Land reform in the Limpopo Province : a case study of the Elias Motsoaledi Local Municipality
Phaahla, Harry Mantaneng
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My interest in this research was to interview leaders and members of the three communities within the Elias Motsoaledi Local Municipality as well as officials of the Regional Land Claims Commission (RLCC). The purpose of the discussions was to find out how the communities involved Government when lodging land claims. The three communities are, Bakwena Ba- Kopa, Bakgaga Ba-Kopa and Masakaneng. The research yielded the following findings: 1. All the three communities followed the correct procedures regarding the relevant legislation and policies when they lodged their land claims. 2. Government played its role through the RLCC by assisting the communities in their endeavor to have their land restored. 3. In the interaction between Government and the communities challenges were encountered that at times led to the delay of the settlements. 4. When the communities keep patient during the land claim processes and Government officials are dedicated to assist the communities, the chance of positive outcomes is maximised. There is evidence that Government made progress to ensure that the affected communities have the dispossessed land restored. However, there is still a lot to be done in addressing the outstanding issues. To handle these matters, as indicated below, co-ordination and interaction between Government and the communities is crucial. One can point out these obstacles by focusing on the three affected communities respectively. Masakaneng: There is a need to tackle the challenge of the concerned group that led to the emergence of another committee in the process. This delays the formal negotiations with the municipality to help facilitate the delivery of the necessary services. Bakwena Ba-Kopa: The role-players missed the time-frames that were targeted for settlement. Government will have to speed up the matter and finalise the settlement, seeing that the beneficiaries have been waiting for many years. Bakgaga Ba-Kopa: Only portion one of RietKloof was restored to the community. The community is eagerly awaiting Government to help facilitate the restoration of the remaining portion. This community also needs to play its part in ensuring that the other sections of the land are restored. It is important that they go back to the drawing board as beneficiaries and tackle the prevailing differences so that they end up with a unanimous stand on this matter. To conclude: It is quite evident that the democratic government post-1994 is committed and prepared to restore the dignity of the black people who were forcibly removed from land they and their ancestors occupied. Government is assisting in this matter by providing all the necessary resources to ensure that land restoration is a success. For Government to succeed, the affected communities must also play their role within the parameters of the relevant legislation. This is what the land Acts expect of all the beneficiaries.
- Humanities