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We Want What’s Ours: Learning from South Africa’s Land Restitution Process

Winter 2015

Researching Law, Vol. 26, No. 1

On her first trip to South Africa in 2002, former ABF Research Professor Bernadette Atuahene learned some troubling statistics concerning the country’s political and economic geography. When the apartheid system came to an end in the early 1990s, white South Africans, who comprised less than ten percent of the population, owned about 87 percent of the land. When the African National Congress and other liberation parties negotiated the end of the apartheid system with the ruling white National Party, a robust program of land reform was one of their key demands. Yet almost ten years later, when Atuahene arrived in South Africa to begin a
clerkship at the Constitutional Court, little had changed.

This edition of Researching Law presents Atuahene’s book, We Want What’s Ours: Learning from South Africa’s Land Restoration Program, which draws on the experiences of South Africans who went through the land restitution process.