Land Reform in South Africa: A Status Report 2008
"This Status Report looks at the state of land reform over the period 2005 to early 2008, with a particular focus on land redistribution. This is appropriate for a number of reasons. First, in the context of extreme inequality in landholding, particularly in a country with a relatively high rural population, the redistribution of land assets must be seen as a central element of a land reform programme and a key indicator of success. Redistribution of land is, not surprisingly, central to the redistribution sub-programme, but is also a critical component of the restitution sub-programme and plays a minor role within tenure reform.For the purposes of this report, land restored under the restitution programme is considered as a form of redistribution, and one that is making a significant contribution to the performance of the land reform programme as a whole. Second, the number of hectares to be redistributed is one of the few concrete targets set by the state and on which it reports with any degree of detail and frequency; therefore,it lends itself to a detailed analysis. Third, the other core element within the land reform programme – tenure reform, on commercial farms and in communal areas – has received relatively little attention from policy-makers or implementers during the period under review and receives only passing mention in official reports.Finally, redistribution, while always central to South Africa’s land reform, appears to have reached a critical juncture, in terms of changes within the redistribution programme itself, the attention now being given within restitution to the restoration of high-value agricultural land, the setting of ambitious new targets and talk of greater use of expropriation."