'n Ondersoek na die potensiële impak van die herverdeling van grond op die sosio-ekonomiese toestande in die Somerset-Oos en Cradock distrikte van die Oos-Kaap

Nieuwoudt, Deborah (2004-03)

Thesis (MPA)--Stellenbosch University, 2004.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: Land is a precious resource that forms the basis of our security, pride and history. The ownership and use of land have always played an important role in the shaping of all political, economic and social processes in South Africa. Therefore it is a very sensitive issue for all South Africans. Colonialism and the Apartheid policy deprived the majority of South Africans of the right to own land or took away their land, and this contributed to the large degree of prevailing poverty, especially of the rural black population. One of the primary purposes of the first democratic government, elected in 1994, was to introduce land reform that would return 30% of all agricultural land to the previously deprived population. The purpose of this study is to research the government policy, and prevailing theories, on land reform, and the impact of this policy on the socio-economic development of the Cradock and Somerset East districts of the Eastern Cape. The current power behind the new land policy is the land reform programme, which consists of redistribution, security of tenure and land restitution. Land reform means, among other things, the redistribution of land with the main objectives of achieving socio-economic development and reducing poverty. From the research it transpired that land reform is a complex issue with widely divergent opinions. The Government itself changed its policy since 1994, and the World Bank has also change its policy. Of the burning issues are: must land reform mainly deal with land restitution, or rather with socio-economic development; is commercial farming on large farms better for land restitution, or small scale farming on small farms; is the capitalistic viewpoint driven by the market mechanism the best, or a more socialistic approach; is communal ownership of land better than individual ownership; should only applicants with farming experience be considered or also people with no experience? All these issues have proponents, mostly it seams as if compromises between these viewpoints would yield the best results. From the case studies, as well as the literature and interviews, it transpired that support services for emerging farmers are of prime importance. Mentors that assist emerging farmers could make a positive contribution. Existing commercial farmers should also be involved as advisers. It also seemed as if it was very difficult for large groups of unrelated beneficiaries to successfully work on one farm. The success of the policy does not only depend on the mere access to land, as the quality of life and potential job opportunities can only be increased by the provision of support services, infrastructure and other development programmes, which result from land reform. This requires a cooperative partnership between national, provincial and local governments. The socio-economic analysis revealed that there are large scale poverty and unemployment in the districts of Cradock and Somerset East. Although the rural population is on the decline, there still are large rural black and coloured populations that may benefit from land restitution. However, because of the dry climate and poor soil quality, it is unlikely that many of these households could be helped by means of land restitution to escape from poverty. Opinions of experts on the degree to which land reform contributed towards socio-economic development, are divided. It seems that projects where upcoming farmers are assisted by a mentor, or where a small number of beneficiaries, related to each other, are farming together, have a greater chance of succeeding. However, for the land reform programme to meet its objectives, it is important to formulate an adequate land policy to ensure peace, reconciliation and national stability. Without these aspects, economic growth and secure livelihoods cannot be ensured. Effective land programmes can contribute directly to increased production and the reduction of poverty, but only if implemented correctly. Land forms the corner stone of development, but cannot be used or maintained as the only way to decrease or eliminate poverty.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Grond is 'n kosbare hulpbron wat nie net die basis van welvaart vorm nie, maar ook van sekuriteit, trots en geskiedenis. Die eienaarskap en gebruik van grond het nog altyd 'n belangrike rol gespeel in die politieke, ekonomiese en sosiale prosesse van 'n land. Gevolglik is dit ook 'n sensitiewe kwessie vir alle Suid-Afrikaners. Kolonisasie en die Apartheidsbeleid het die meerderheid Suid-Afrikaners ontneem van die reg om grond te besit of hul grond afgeneem, wat bygedra het tot die grootskaalse armoede van veral die landelike swart bevolking. Een van die belangrike doeleindes van die eerste demokratiese regering wat in 1994 verkies is, was om grondhervorming in te stel wat 30% van alle landbougrond weer aan die voorheen benadeelde sektor van die bevolking sou teruggee. Die doel van die werkstuk is om die beleid van die regering, en die teorieë, oor grondhervorming na te gaan en om die potensiële impak van dié beleid op sosio-ekonomiese ontwikkeling van die Cradock en Somerset-Oos distrikte van die Oos-Kaap te bepaal. Die dryfkrag agter die nuwe grondbeleid is die grondhervormingsprogram, wat bestaan uit herverdeling, sekerheid van eienaarskap en restitusie van grond. Grondhervorming behels onder andere die herverspreiding van grond met die hoofdoel om sosio-ekonomiese ontwikkeling te bevorder en armoede te verminder. Uit die navorsing het dit geblyk dat grondhervorming 'n ingewikkelde kwessie is waaroor verskeie sterk uiteenlopend standpunte gehuldig word. Selfs die Regering het sy beleid verander sedert 1994, en die Wêreldbank het ook sy beleid verander. Van die brandpunte is: moet grondhervorming hoofsaaklik gaan oor die herverdeling van grond of oor sosioekonomiese opheffing; is kommersiële boerdery op groot plase die beste vir herverdeling of kleinskaal boerdery op klein plase; is die kapitalistiese siening met die markmeganisme as dryfveer die beste, of moet 'n meer sosialistiese benadering gevolg word; is kommunale besit van grond die beste of individuele eienaarskap; moet slegs aansoekers met ondervinding in landbou van grond voorsien word, of ook mense met geen ondervinding nie? Al dié standpunte het voor- en teenstanders, en heelwaarskynlik sal 'n middeweg meestal die beste resultate lewer. Uit die drie gevallestudies, sowel as die literatuur en onderhoude, het dit geblyk dat ondersteuningsdienste vir opkomende boere van kardinale belang is. Mentors, wat hulp aan opkomende boere verleen en hulle help met besigheidsplanne kan 'n positiewe bydrae maak. Hierin behoort bestaande kommersiële boere ook 'n rol speel. Dit het ook geblyk dat dit moeilik is vir groot groepe onverwante begunstigdes om suksesvol op een plaas saam te werk. Die sukses van hierdie elemente van grondhervorming is afhanklik van meer as blote toegang tot grond - die kwaliteit van lewe en moontlikheid van werksgeleenthede kan slegs verbeter word deur die lewering van ondersteuningsdienste, infrastruktuur en ander ontwikkelingsprogramme, wat voortspruit uit grondhervorming. Dit vereis 'n opbouende vennootskap tussen nasionale-, provinsiale- en plaaslike regerings. Volgens die sosio-ekonomiese analises blyk dit dat daar groot armoede en werkloosheid in die Somerset-Oos en Cradock distrikte is. Alhoewel die landelike bevolking daal, is daar nog steeds 'n groot swart en bruin landelike bevolking wat kan baat by grondhervorming. Weens die droë klimaat en swak grondgehalte van dié gebied is dit onwaarskynlik dat baie van dié gesinne met grond herverdeling gehelp sal kan word om uit armoede te ontsnap. Daar was verdeelde opinie by betrokkenes oor die mate waartoe grondhervorming reeds bygedra het tot die bevordering van sosio-ekonomiese ontwikkeling. Dit blyk dat projekte waar 'n mentor opkomende boere bystaan, of waar daar 'n klein aantal lede is wat verwant is aan mekaar, 'n groter kans op sukses het. Effektiewe grondprogramme kan moontlik direk bydra tot verhoging in produksie en die uitwissing van armoede - mits dit korrek toegepas word. Grond vorm die hoeksteen tot ontwikkeling, maar kan nie die enigste manier wees om armoede te probeer verlig nie.

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