Gender, HIV-AIDS, land restitution and survival strategies in the Capricorn district of South Africa
Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to look at aspects of gender issues in HIV/AIDS (non)affection on land restitution and survival strategies in the Capricorn district of Limpopo province of South Africa. Design/methodology/approach – The study administered questionnaires to purposively selected AIDS-affected households. For comparison, other randomly selected household categories that have lost members to other causes of death and those who have not experienced any deaths were included in the sample with a view to determining whether the disease could potentially affect households' ability to make potential claims to land, their access to, use of and retention of land, all of which engender a spread of survival strategies as the household's food and livelihood security is threatened. Findings – In the study area, land is still largely held under traditional customs. Households having land to reclaim as a proportion of those interviewed are low. There are more aged heads among land-claiming AIDS-affected households. There is a significant presence of women heads among the land-claiming households. Accepting cash compensation for land restitution is not popular in the study area. AIDS-affected households are completely food insecure. As a coping strategy, households borrow money or food. AIDS-affected households, defined as households that have lost members to AIDS-related illnesses, sell their livestock because they are no longer able to manage the herd and they sell their crops to meet contingencies. Among them, it is the female-headed households that are significantly not coping well. Gender is not significantly associated with receipt of social grants in any of the household categories. It is also not significantly associated with the adoption of the maintaining strategy of receiving food parcels or borrowing money or food nor in the adoption of reductive strategy of starving for one or two days. The sale of land is not a coping strategy in the study area. Originality/value – There are few studies that link the HIV/AIDS pandemic to the land restitution process in South Africa. The findings could assist in understanding the coping/survival strategies of affected households and in designing suitable policies to assist them.
Acquired immune deficiency syndrome, Gender, HIV, Land, South Africa
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