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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Mutual gains from hostile confrontations: land boards, their clients and 'self-allocation' in Botswana
Author:Onoma, Ato KwamenaISNI
Year:2009
Periodical:Africa Development: A Quarterly Journal of CODESRIA (ISSN 0850-3907)
Volume:34
Issue:1
Pages:103-124
Language:English
Geographic term:Botswana
Subjects:land registration
land tenure
State-society relationship
Abstract:This article argues that hostile confrontations between State and societal actors pursuing divergent goals can sometimes end up empowering both. In Botswana, successful efforts by less powerful clients to reclaim the power to allocate land from land boards through various stratagems ended up also strengthening the land boards as well as the State. By tricking land boards into legitimizing plots on which they had squatted, clients brought their land interests to the awareness of the land board and contributed to bettering land board records. The better records enable land boards to allocate land and resolve disputes in more informed ways. Better records also provide State officials with valuable information that State agencies can use to tax, police, plan and implement various social projects better. In presenting this argument, the article contributes to the State-in-society discourse by showing that the possibility of positive sum gains need not be limited to situations where State and societal actors collaborate to achieve mutual goals. Bibliogr., sum. in English and French. [Journal abstract]
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