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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Botswana: A Country in Need of Land Policy Reform
Author:Mazonde, Isaac N.
Periodical:Botswana Notes and Records (ISSN 0525-5090)
Notes:biblio. refs., maps
Geographic terms:Botswana
Southern Africa
Subjects:land reform
agricultural policy
Agriculture, Natural Resources and the Environment
Development and Technology
Politics and Government
Agriculture, Agronomy, Forestry
Agriculture and state
External link:https://www.jstor.org/stable/40980144
Abstract:Botswana's ruling class, most of whom are also cattle barons, enact land policies which are likely ultimately to alienate the commons at the expense of the small-scale livestock farmers who are in the vast majority in a country that is essentially livestock-producing. Land Boards are experiencing increasing difficulty in discharging their mandate to provide land for grazing and arable production to new households in the face of the growing shortage of land and competition for its use. A case study of the Kgatleng District in the hardveld of eastern Botswana illustrates the acuteness of the problem. Against this background the Botswana government has developed the Agricultural Policy, which allows cattle owners, where feasible, to fence communal livestock pasture, ostensibly in the interests of ecological conservation and economic rationalization of the livestock industry. However, the policy is likely to have profound and unintended consequences. Amongst others, it will greatly reduce the amount of grazing available to livestock which utilize communal water points. Clearly the Agricultural Policy, along with the entire tendency to privatize land, will not solve Botswana's growing problem of agricultural land shortage. There is an urgent need to reinstate the logic of the commons as a fresh basis for reformed grazing land policies. Bibliogr., sum.