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Group one: Farm dwellers

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Group one: Farm dwellers

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  1. Group one: Farm dwellers Group members: Annelize Crosby; Matodzi Michelle Mulondo, Aluwani Matsila, Hans Binswanger, Thandisizwe Diko, Reason Baloyi

  2. Farm dwellers (Definition) • People residing in commercial farms as permitted by the farmers, their families • Labour tenants and their families • Any person designated by the above to take over the rights and obligations

  3. The extent of the problem • There is significant problem with tenure security of farm dwellers resulting in evictions (both legal and illegal) • Consensus on the extent of the problem is still to be established • Consensus with regard to the urgent need for independent verification of the numbers in the Nkuzi Study

  4. Problems of infrastructure • It has been decades of farm dwellers being disadvantaged • Some farmers in the olden days tended to provide infrastructures for the farm dwellers who were working in the farms • Farmers do not provide infrastructures to farm workers • Legislations do not enforce the farmers to provide basic services and local service providers find it not cost effective to provide such services (this is an issue that remains unresolved)

  5. Adequacy of Legislative measures • Legislation is in place (ESTA, LRAD, LTA etc) • Legislation has the potential to protect farm dwellers • Legislation gives substantial procedural rights, • Disagreement on the extent of provision for substantive rights • Some adjustment needed in the legislation

  6. Implementation • Consensus that implementation is inadequate • DLA gives low priority and has low capacity to deal with farm dwellers • Provincial offices are not being monitored on the implementation ESTA and LTA • Monitoring often focuses on hectares transferred under redistribution and restitutions • When they do deal with farm dwellers they prefer to use LRAD and SLAG awards rather than the remedies under ESTA and LTA

  7. Identified weaknesses • The state functions in disjuncture (Ministries, local government, etc) • Lack of cooperation between the designated Government Departments at national, provincial and local levels • Need to recognize that the problem is a long standing one • Lack of alignment of budgets with the needs of the farm dwellers • DLA must take the initiative for better coordination and better budget alignment immediately

  8. Solution to claims 1. Accurately comprehend the overall situation • Solutions strategies should focus on the overall empowerment of the farm dwellers and should provide a range of options, appropriate to particular situations • strengthen the rights of farm dwellers where they are, in particular for labor tenants; • By providing other land for cultivation, grazing and/or housing • The solutions should be worked out using a participatory appraisal process, with facilitation • ESTA gives good focus on housing for farm dwellers no more interested in farming • LRAD gives good focus on those who want to farm • Former farm dwellers would make good LRAD beneficiaries because they have farming experience

  9. How to improve the use of LRAD Grants: • As part of overhaul of LRAD program, incorporate housing and other elements into the LRAD grants (total cost of land redistribution), • By providing an additional ESTA or LTA grant which compensates the former farm dwellers for the rights they leave behind, and to which they are entitled • They could then use the ESTA or LTA grant as their equity contribution for LRAD, and therefore get a larger LRAD grant

  10. Different scenarios for housing grants • Where ESTA workout result in ownership of the plot on which the dweller lives: They should be able to benefit from a housing grant to upgrade their house • Where land continues to belong to the farmer, but a worker continues to reside there: Farmer should have to provide minimum standard of housing • Where the farmer dweller no longer works on the farm but wants to leave: ESTA or LTA should provide some cash compensation for rights foregone, and the farm dweller can apply for a housing grant elsewhere • The size of any cash grant would have to depend on the length of the stay on the farm, and other considerations • Needs to be worked out as part of the participatory process, arbitration, or dispute resolution

  11. Required facilitation and legal aid • Farm dwellers lack legal aid and finance required for facilitation, arbitration and court cases • Ministry of Finance and Department of Land Affairs should provide finance for these processes, starting immediately • Provide information on access to legal aid and the role of the Legal Aid Board • The state should mobilize finance and identify the different roles that other stakeholders should play