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Elite Capture in South Africa’s Land Redistribution – The Convergence of Policy Bias, Corrupt Practices and Class Dynamics


Year published: 2023
Categories: Journal Article
URL Link: https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/03057070.2023.2187969

Author / Authors:

  • Farai Mtero,
  • Nkanyiso Gumede,
  • Katlego Ramantsima


Land reform projects can address unequal access to land in society. In South Africa, the historical racial inequality in land ownership is a big problem that needs to be addressed. However, when land reform processes happen, new forms of inequality can emerge where wealthy people end up benefiting more. This article talks about how this happens in South Africa's state land lease and disposal policy.

The article presents evidence from 62 farms in five provinces of South Africa where land reform projects took place. The evidence shows that policies tend to favour wealthy people, who are seen as better at running large farms. This leads to uneven outcomes in agriculture. Some wealthy people take advantage of land reforms to accumulate more wealth, and there is often corruption involved.


  • Journal Article