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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:The contribution of Archie Mafeje to the debate on land reform in Africa
Author:Mpofu, BusaniISNI
Periodical:International Journal of African Renaissance Studies (ISSN 1753-7274)
Geographic term:Africa
Subjects:land reform
land tenure
About person:Archibald Monwabisi Mafeje (1937-2007)ISNI
External link:https://doi.org/10.1080/18186874.2014.916878
Abstract:Archie Mafeje raised pertinent issues that are still hampering land reform and agrarian development efforts in Sub Saharan Africa (SSA). He rightly argued that land reform in Africa was wrongly premised on European, instead of African jurisprudence, that most countries are concerned with the modification of tenure, instead of executing a proper land reform, in the practical sense of land redistribution and the introduction of new forms of land tenure, even in former white settler states with serious misdistribution of land between races; and that the communal nature of land tenure in Africa was misunderstood to mean that any and every individual can lay claim on any piece of land or be granted access at will. Actually, Mafeje wisely pointed out, as this article shows, that traditional African forms of tenure offered considerable opportunity, as well as security, to peasant land users, often making implementation of individual tenure not only unnecessary, but potentially counter-productive. This is sometimes aggravated by conflicts arising from misunderstandings owing to the co-existence of both customary and national government political authorities in the allocation of land. This faulty land reform process is therefore responsible for the agricultural and food crises that are still being experienced in the region. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum. [Journal abstract]