Contribution of land reform programmes to beneficiaries on Rocky Drift Farm, Muden, KwaZulu-Natal.
This study seeks to examine the contribution of land reform programmes to beneficiaries and focuses on post settlement development for beneficiaries once they have resettled on the farm. The contribution of land reform programmes is examined in this study through the investigation of the Rocky Drift Farm, a rural area in Muden, KwaZulu-Natal Province, This case study has been chosen because it became one of the first Land Reform Pilot Projects transferred in 1997 to a Trust, representing a large number of owners (232 in total), under the government assisted land redistribution programme. It is now 12 years since the residents have returned to Rocky Drift Farm and this period is regarded as sufficiently long enough to enable the critical examination of development progress relating to land reform since 1997. This research has hypothesized that "whilst the Land Reform Programme does generate some benefits for beneficiaries, it has proved to be an inadequate mechanism for improving the quality of life for beneficiaries, and thus needs to be supplemented by a number of other key support programmes in order to fully contribute to the lives of the poor". While this investigation has proven beyond reasonable doubt that the lives of of the beneficiaries have not fully improved as a result of Land Reform Programmes at Rocky Drift, improvement in infrastructure and service provision such as upgrading of 3 roads. construction and upgrading of 5 schools, building of 1 creche and the supply of portable water, has been noticed. Furthermore, benefits such as a sense of belonging, identity, trust, hope and reconciliation, resulting from the implementation of the Rocky Drift Project have also not gone unnoticed. However, despite the benefits mentioned above, it is strongly argued by this dissertation that these benefits are inadequate to boldly conclude that land reform programmes have improved the standard of life for Rock Drift residents after 12 years of resettlement. Therefore, this study recommends, inter-alia, the following supplementary measures as boost for land reform programmes to enable the beneficiaries to fully benefit from these programmes, during post settlement; • improving communication, co-operation and co-ordination among the government departments, • maintaining the continuity of the key stakeholders, • establishment of agri-villages; • link land reform projects with lDPs: • re-establishing the Rocky Drift community structures and the • letting of unused portions of Rocky Drift Farm, to mention a few. Lastly, since the Rocky Drift Project piloted other farms, this study also recommends that a further investigation needs to be conducted. This will draw a comparative analysis and critically examine whether or not the lessons from this project were used to improve other similar projects.