New book: Securing land rights in Namibia

CRC associate member Romie Vonkie Nghitevelekwa of projects C05, ‘Framing Futures’ and A04, ‘Future Conservation’, has published her book, Securing land rights with UNAM press. The book’s publication co-financed by the CRC takes up themes at the center of socio-political debates throughout the African continent. These relate to national struggles over access to land, land distribution, land rights, and security of tenure.

Land in much of rural Africa is communally held, a system that provides security of livelihood and a social safety net but is not immune to appropriation by government or injustices such as the eviction of women from the land on the death of their husbands.

Under the title, Securing land rights: Communal land reform in Namibia, the book contextualizes Namibia within these debates, highlighting the country’s stance in relation to communal land tenure reforms with a focus on the realities of people’s lives in north-central Namibia. Leading questions center on competing ways of ascribing value to land; mechanisms and monetization of access to land; commercialization of land use, de-agrarianization and ongoing transformation underpinned by economic and territorial restructuring.

These processes have direct impacts on equity in access to land and land distribution and engender competing visions of land rights. Communal land reform is an uneasy compromise between different processes and interests.

About the author

Romie Vonkie Nghitevelekwa is a lecturer in sociology at the University of Namibia. She obtained her Ph.D. in Social Anthropology from the Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg (Germany). The book can be purchased here.

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