Urban Land Workshop

On 21st November 2018 the Housing Development Agency convened a Human Settlements Urban Land Dialogue.

Government officials from the HDA, Rural Development and COGTA attended. A range of non government stakeholders participated as well including LandNNES the Socio Economics Rights Institute (SERI), the Legal Resources Centre (LRC), the National Social Housing Organisation (Nasho), Ndifuna Ukwazi, the Development Action Group (DAG) and Slum Dwellers International (SDI).

The purpose was to hold a space in which government and civil society could dialogue on the urban land question, given the significance of the land question in the current period, with a specific focus on land for human settlements. The idea was to inform the national Department of Human Settlements’ policy and legal review process.

The first half of the event was devoted to government inputs, and discussion, while the second half was an opportunity for NGOs to present their perspectives on the issue. The HDA, SALGA, COGTA and the South African Cities Network gave presentations in the morning session, while SERI, Nasho, DAG and Ndifuna Ukwazi presented in the afternoon session, with SDI wrapping up the civil society panel.

Lauren Royston presented for SERI focusing on a framework for urban land reform, motivating the need for a reform agenda using the three legs of land reform derived from Section 25 of the Constitution namely, restitution, redistribution and tenure reform. She drew on the work of LandNNES in motivating for a fourth element – land administration, defining it and suggesting the importance of having a cross rural/urban programme to address the current gap.  

LandNNES was invited to the workshop as well and the discussions were enriched by the efforts of the administration work group of the network to date, which has been led by Siyabu Manona and Rosalie Kingwill.

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