Black farmers need action and support, not government rhetoric
The gap between what the ANC says and what it does is hindering rural communities eager to succeed
Land reform is a highly emotive subject, especially since it is coupled to debates about radical economic transformation in SA. While there is broad agreement that land reform is necessary if we are to see inclusive economic development, there are divergent views about the precise policy tools and pace with which this important programme should be implemented. One thing that is certain is that if this debate is not managed well, land reform in future could be used to stoke populist sentiments in ways that generate catastrophic results similar to what we have seen in many postindependent African states. Those in whose name land reform is driven end up being the casualties, while elites become rich landowners. Progress on land reform is made all the more difficult by the fact that sharp tensions still mark the relationship between large agricultural groups that are predominantly white-owned and the governing party, which has failed to put in place a sensible approach to managing redis...