Municipal commonage policy and livestock owners: Findings from the Eastern Cape, South Africa

Davenport, N. A. and Gambiza, J. (2009) Municipal commonage policy and livestock owners: Findings from the Eastern Cape, South Africa. Land use policy, 26 (3). pp. 513-520. ISSN 0264-8377

[img]
Preview
Text
Municipal_commonage.pdf

275Kb

Abstract

The new African National Congress government announced after 1994 that municipal commonage would be a pillar of their land reform programme. The Department of Land Affairs spearheaded this by acquiring new land to complement the existing ‘old’ commonages. The aim of old commonage was to supplement the income of poor urban residents through the subsistence user system whereas new commonage was intended as a ‘stepping stone’ for emergent farmers. We investigated the differences between old and new commonage farmers as well as how they perceived the Makana local municipality's capacity to manage the commonage. The results showed that local institutions were weak. Only 46% of the old commonage farmers were members of a local livestock association whereas 74% of the new commonage farmers were members. Most old commonage farmers (59%) were dissatisfied with local government's management of the commonage. In contrast, only 37% of the new commonage farmers were dissatisfied with the management of the commonage. There were no differences between old and new commonage farmers in terms of livestock owners’ characteristics and mean annual net direct-use value of livestock. There were also no differences in the age of the two types of commonage farmers. Furthermore, there was no association between the type of commonage and level of education. The mean annual net direct-use value of livestock on old commonage was R6308 compared with R9707 on new commonage. Although the income from livestock for new commonage farmers varied slightly from that of old commonage farmers, the annual productive output per farmer on old commonage was R473 ha−1, three times higher than that of new commonage farmers which was R134 ha−1. We suggest that new land policy legislation is needed in which poverty as well as the legal arrangements between all stakeholders is clearly defined. Furthermore, national departments need to be more involved with local municipalities to increase local management capacity.

Item Type:Article
Uncontrolled Keywords:Direct-use value of livestock; Livelihoods; Local government; Municipal commonage; South Africa; Eastern Cape; common land; income; land reform; landownership; livestock farming; local government; productivity; rural economy; stakeholder; subsistence agriculture
Subjects:G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GE Environmental Sciences
Divisions:Faculty > Faculty of Science > Environmental Science
ID Code:2419
Deposited By: Prof Charlie Shackleton
Deposited On:20 Mar 2012 14:53
Last Modified:20 Mar 2012 14:53
8 full-text download(s) since 20 Mar 2012 14:53
8 full-text download(s) in the past 12 months
More statistics...

Repository Staff Only: item control page