A Review on Land Restitution for improved rural livelihoods of farm beneficiaries

Malose M Tjale, Marizvikuru Mwale, Beata M Kilonzo


Land restitution is one of the three sub-programmes of land reform implemented by governments to deal with challenges that include unemployment, poverty, lack of sustainable livelihoods, and food insecurity within households particularly of rural communities. Land restitution is the provision of land equivalent or financial compensation to individuals or communities that have been dispossessed of their land. In South Africa land of some people or communities was dispossessed by the Natives Land Act of 1913 which employed racial discriminatory laws or practices. Several land reform policies of countries such as Ukraine, the then Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR), China, India, and Brazil, including countries in Africa such as Namibia, Burundi, Mozambique, Zimbabwe and South Africa were implemented but their goals were not sufficiently realized. Like in many other countries, land reform, in particular land restitution has been a dismal failure in South Africa. Several challenges have been encountered compared to successes. Little/no transformation has been made to lives of the restituted farm beneficiaries. Thus, the review intends to understand the question like; why farm beneficiaries are not benefiting from the restituted farms in South Africa? Land restitution strategies that the government put in place to ensure that livelihoods of farm beneficiaries are improved were reviewed. Possible intervention strategies that could be implemented for improving livelihoods of land restituted farm beneficiaries or ways of revamping the existing strategies were discussed. One of these ways is to strengthen and provide continuous capacity building to the farm beneficiaries and agricultural extension advisors to enable them to assist the restituted farm beneficiaries with much needed essential agricultural skills to run their farms effectively and efficiently.


Farm benefits, intervention strategies, land reform, land restitution

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