Print version ISSN 1727-3781
PER vol.14 no.3 Potchefstroom 2011
The seminar hosted Potchefstroom in April 2010, entitled 'Good Governance in Land Tenure', followed in the tradition of cooperation between the Faculty of Law of the North West University and Konrad Adenauer Stiftung in South Africa.
We started our cooperation fourteen years ago with a joint series of seminars under the title 'Constitution and Law'. In 2008 we started our joint project on good governance in Southern Africa with the focus on the impact of globalisation on good governance in Southern Africa, and in 2009 we discussed the topic 'good governance as a mechanism to promote sustainable development in Southern Africa'.
Over the past eight years the Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung has made substantial resources available to facilitate research and discussion in the area of land reform. We have researched some successful land reform case studies, but the urgent need for post-settlement support is clear. Although the three land reform programmes have been introduced with some success, it is hampered by amongst others, financial restraints, impractical measures and a lack of capacity and coordination of the departments involved.
Through governance, society is managed and competing priorities and interests of different groups are reconciled. Governance refers to the actions of government, and also to the actions of the many other institutions of society in which authority and power are vested. Weak governance in land administration has adverse consequences for the society as a whole.
Good governance in land administration helps economic development and reduces poverty. Achieving good governance in land administration requires a strong commitment of the people involved. A well-communicated land policy with clear objectives for legal and institutional reforms helps to establish the ownership of such people in the change process.
Promoting democracy and the rule of law has always been the main objective of the Konrad Adenauer Stiftung - not only in South Africa but also all over the world.
As the Konrad Adenauer Stiftung we are committed to the rule of law, strong institutional checks and balances, the devolution of power, and political pluralism.
I would also like to extend our gratitude to Professors Francois Venter, Gerrit Pienaar, Mrs Rieëtte Venter and the dedicated staff of the Faculty of Law for our excellent cooperation and for the preparation of this conference.
Dr Werner Böhler
Konrad Adenauer Stiftung