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WEBINAR: Urban struggles for equitable access to land

THURSDAY 5 AUGUST 2021 from 13:00 – 14:00 SAST/CAT

PLAAS invites you to a webinar titled ‘Urban struggles for equitable access to land’.

The speakers include:

The webinar will be chaired by Katlego Ramantsima, a researcher, from the Institute for Poverty, Land and Agrarian Studies (PLAAS) at the University of the Western Cape.

Urban land struggles have been a feature of the democratic South Africa. These struggles are conducted by ordinary South Africans in their quest to access to land not only for residence but also for economic and social purposes. The constitution of South Africa directs the states to take measures within its available resources to ensure that access to land is extended in an equitable manner to all citizens of the country. Despite this, access to land and housing in the urban areas remains a preserve of those with economic means. The land reform programme has been identified not to properly respond to the land needs for those in the urban areas.

The Presidential Advisory Panel on Land Reform and Agriculture bemoans that despite most South Africans living in town and cities, urban land reform has not featured on the policy agenda, but land reform has been equated to rural and agricultural land. Various reports have also indicated the persistence of spatial inequalities in the post-apartheid cities, and raise the fact that the poor tend to reside in places that are far away from employment opportunities, transport hubs, health and education facilities despite the constitutional requirements for a just and inclusive society. The failure of the state to ensure equitable access to land in the urban areas has resulted in intense struggles by the poor to assert their rights to land and this is manifest in the rise in urban land occupations.

Most of these urban land occupations are driven by local grassroots organisations and social movements which have become an important vehicle in the struggles for a democratic and equitable land reform for the urban poor in post-apartheid South Africa. Land occupation social movements have developed collective ways of accessing and administering land. The response of the state to these occupations has mostly been violence and different measures that have not addressed the glaring lack of equitable access to land, housing, widespread poverty, and growing inequalities in post-apartheid cities.

This webinar will discuss the nature and character of the ongoing urban land occupations, and will explore the questions below:

  1. Is the state doing enough to ensure equitable access to land in the urban areas?
  2. What can we learn from the struggles for equitable access to land in post apartheid cities?
  3. What should be the appropriate responses by the state to the growing demand for land in urban areas?
  4. How can we ensure that access to land is extended to a vast number of people in the urban areas?
  5. What role does land reform have to ensure equitable access to land in the urban areas and how must it be implemented?

Tune in on Thursday 5 August 2021 at:

  • 13:00 South African Standard Time (SAST)/Central African Time (CAT)
  • 12:00 West African Time (WAT)
  • 11:00 Greenwich Meridian Time (GMT) (Ghana)
  • 14:00 East African Time (EAT) (Tanzania)

Watch the webinar here: Or scroll down to view it.