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Native Lands in South Africa: A “New Deal”

Nature volume 140, pages 458459 (11 September 1937) | Download Citation

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Abstract

CONSIDERABLE progress has been made in the provision of additional reserves for the native population of South Africa since the passing of the Native Lands Act, which was promulgated in August, 1936. Up to July last, according to a dispatch from the Cape Town correspondent of The Times, which appears in the issue of September 3, £800,000 has already been spent on the purchase of farms from Europeans. The farms which have been bought up to the present are mostly situated in the Transvaal, where the need for native land is greatest, as this is the principal area of native location on European farms, a practice which will not be permitted in future. The land is being allotted to the natives and settlement will proceed as the present European holders vacate. They have been permitted to remain in possession until after their harvest, and land is being provided for them elsewhere. Under the provisions of the Native Trust and Land Act, 1936, the South African Native Trust, representing the Government, is authorized to acquire 7,250,000 morgen (about 15,000,000 acres) of lands for native use. It is anticipated that the work of settling the native on these lands, which will now go on steadily, will occupy a period of several years. It is clear, however, that if the situation is not taken in hand drastically, and the conditions which prevail on native lands, not only in South Africa, but also in territories to the north, are allowed to continue unchecked, a situation similar to that for which the present measures are intended to be a remedy will again arise before many years have passed, and probably then be more difficult to meet.

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https://doi.org/10.1038/140458b0

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