Serving production, welfare or neither? An analysis of the group resettlement projects in the Namibian land reform
AbstractSince independence in 1990 the SWAPO-led Government has implemented a land reform policy in Namibia aimed at addressing the imbalances in land ownership by redistributing white commercial farmlands among black farmers. As part of this policy, communities have been settled on group resettlement farms. Although these settlements are only a minor part of the land reform process, they involve more than half of the total beneficiaries. This article attempts to provide an overview of these group resettlements and to find out if they are achieving the objectives – in terms of production and social welfare – set out by the government. I seek to contribute to the ongoing debate over land reform in Namibia and to highlight some of the shortcomings in its implementation. I also consider the possibility of combining and/or prioritizing the raising of production levels with/and the improvement of the social welfare of communities through land reforms.
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