A narrative policy analysis of the challenges of land tenure reform in South Africa between 1996 and 2009 : a case study of the Labour Tenants (Labour Tenant Act No. 3 of 1996) in KwaZulu-Natal.
This study is centred on the challenges of land tenure reforms in South Africa taking a case study of the labour tenants in KwaZulu-Natal between 1996 and 2009. The study uses narrative policy analysis as a framework for understanding these challenges. Of course, the challenges around the tenure reforms cannot be discussed in isolation from the land owners and the government. Voices of the labour tenants, farmers, government and civil society are heard in this study. This study shows how policy change comes about and how instrumental stories are in bringing about change. It also specifically looked at the factors that lead to policy change. The measures put in place to bring about the needed policy change and finally the procedures and condition advanced to secure this new change in policy were examined. The study focuses on a redistributive policy, as it looks at policy transition from one regime, in which a certain group of people was disadvantaged in terms of ownership, to the next, where the previously disadvantaged are being uplifted. Stories in this study are used to show how and why change occurs in policy arenas. The study used qualitative methodology to obtain the information that was needed to answer the research question. Documents were used to source this information, which was in the form of workshop minutes, reported complaints, government legislation and policy documents such as the Labour Tenant Act No.3 of 1996, the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, the Green Paper and the White Paper on South African Land Policy. Other documents included a report on independent research done on the relationships between farmers and labour tenants on farms in KwaZulu-Natal and the various land and agrarian reports. This study unearths the challenges of land tenure reforms in South Africa, through a narrative policy analysis technique. The study used the narratives to gain a better understanding of the policy; the story of the government in the form of the legislation enacted relating to land and the story of the people as recipients of the policy. The Labour Tenant Act No.3 of 1996 is used as the main document of reference and Association for Rural Advancement (AFRA) as the voice of civil society, not only as a source of information. In this study the voices of AFRA, labour tenants and farmers are collectively referred to as the people‟s voice. KwaZulu-Natal was used as a case study due to the high rate of labour tenants in the province as well as its history of the land conflict. The study in its final chapter refers to the difficulty of managing redistributive policies such as land reform. Despite the challenges of the redistributive policies, the study shows how narrative policy analysis helps understand complex policies, as well as help understand difficult problems.