SO-CALLED stolen land, withheld tips and typical white tears can instantly provoke a social media frenzy. Unfortunately, the controversy ignited by Rhodes Must Fall activist Ntokoza Qwabe is unlikely to lead to sensible engagement on the land question, or how South Africans can extract greater benefit from our nation’s 122-million hectares.Land is an emotive issue, but it shouldn’t be a mindless one. Some sound minds made a promising start when they framed our constitution. Its preamble says the land of SA "belongs to all who live in it, united in our diversity".The highest law in the land repudiates the apartheid government’s attempt to allocate to whites all the land outside the former homelands and the land in the latter to blacks. So the land has already been returned.So far so good. Now to engage with some practical difficulties. How do we distribute ownership of 122-million hectares among our 56-million people? Simple division won’t work. One person’s 2.2ha in the middle of Sa...

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