Tag Archives: Land Reform

Why South Africa needs fresh ideas to make land reform a reality

Ben Cousins, University of the Western Cape What is going wrong in South Africa’s land reform programme, and how can its failings be addressed? In 22 years land reform has barely altered the agrarian structure of South Africa, and has had only minor effects on rural livelihoods. Partly unintentionally, partly by design, land reform has…

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It is too soon to forget about apartheid

I recently watched the movie Woman in Gold. It is based on a true story about Maria Altmann’s journey in getting the Austrian government to return to her a Klimt painting that was stolen from her family during the Nazi occupation of Austria during World War II. This women’s journey towards justice is a long…

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Land reform, is it that simple?

Every now and again there are vehement political calls from various quarters and “politically conscious” observers for land that was stolen through apartheid colonialism to be given back to its rightful owners. Typically this involves urging, pressuring, and sometimes even heckling the ruling party to somehow effect this land reform at best “immediately” or at…

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You have no right to own land if you’re black and rural

Powerful lobby groups regularly sound alarm bells when the torpid rate of land reform fleetingly raises the possibility of land expropriation and, with it, the spectre of the violation of white farmers’ property rights. In reality, it is black, rural, poor South Africans who are already being deprived of the right to own property, even…

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Some thoughts on land reform…without ice

It has been said that every generation hates its fathers and makes friends with its grandfathers. In my case, my 70-plus father-in-law (though he is actually less than 20 years my senior) may be a case in point. I have always liked my in-laws. I like my mother-in-law because we share the same hairstyle and…

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What should we make of the state of land reform?

By Rudolph Jansen Land reform received a fair amount of attention in President Jacob Zuma’s 2013 State of the Nation Address. Sceptics will say “we’ve heard it all before, now show us that something will happen” and the pessimists will say “there is no virtue in admitting failure and government still doesn’t understand the fundamental…

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The link between the environment, poverty and development in South Africa

A 2011 World Bank study estimates that environmental wealth accounts for 26 percent of the total wealth of low-income countries. This is contrasted with 13 percent of wealth in middle-income countries and only 2 percent of wealth in OECD countries. Therefore, investing in sound and equitable environmental management makes good economic sense and is essential to…

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Let’s talk: White fears and black aspirations

South Africa has always had a history of bad race relations, but after 1994 we all held high hopes of improved race relations and tolerance. How wrong we were. The issue is simply that South Africans are selfish. All race groups are! We simply refuse to step into one another’s shoes and try to understand…

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Whose land is it anyway?

By Kgomotso Mamello Motshidi When I think of the land debate, I wonder how far back in history we are willing to go in order to resolve this thorny issue. Sparks have been flying subsequent to Deputy Minister Pieter Mulder’s presentation in Parliament regarding his version of history. The Khoisan group recently made a request…

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Economic freedom without education and big business?

It was interesting to note at a recent seminar on ‘Economic Freedom in Our Lifetime’ organised by the Xubera Institute for Research and Development, that out of all the panellists, only one mentioned the importance of education in attaining economic freedom. The panellists included an economist, an academic, a journalist/political analyst and a Provincial MEC….

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