WANDILE SIHLOBO: Leaders have missed a chance to transform rural economies
There is broad scope for agricultural development in three provinces and the residents are eager to engage
Expanding irrigation infrastructure, commercialising underutilised communal and reformed land (through the provision of tradable land rights), and targeted support to agricultural subsectors and regions with growth potential could all have transformed the rural economy of the Eastern Cape, Limpopo and KwaZulu-Natal.
While this may seem obvious, unfortunately those in leadership have failed to pursue this route. Consequently, economic conditions in the rural areas of these provinces remain poor, and we continue to see migration to the cities. In some cases such migration is more expensive for the government, which has to contend with the provision of houses, education, health and social needs. The case would have been less dire had efforts been made to transform these provinces’ rural agricultural economies...
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