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.
Government officials from the HDA, Department of Land Reform and Rural Development and the Department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (COGTA) attended. A range of non government stakeholders participated as well including LandNNEs, the Socio-Economic 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 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.
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.
SERI, together with other key stakeholders, has subsequently made presentations and participated in discussion with the Presidency’s Advisory Panel on Land Reform.