FRW news in brief

    | July 21, 2014

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    1-South Africa: Is urban agriculture the way of the future?

    A 2011 World Health Organization report states that South Africa is a food secure nation.

    But the report also says that, while the prevalence of food insecurity dropped by half between 1998 and 2008, the proportion of people at risk of food insecurity did not change during that period. Furthermore, a study performed by the African Food Security Network in 2008 found that 70 per cent of urban South African households reported facing “significant” or “severe” food insecurity.

    Urbanization is said to be the cause, with rural people moving to urban areas at a furious pace. Many end up in what researchers term “poor localities.” South African urban planners and policy-makers are now focusing on how urban agriculture should be integrated into urban planning.

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    2-Cameroon: A haven for refugees from the Central African Republic?

    The Democratic Republic of Congo, the Republic of Congo, Chad and Cameroon have taken in 226,000 Central African Republic refugees fleeing violence between anti-balaka and ex-Seleka groups since December 2013.

    Eighty thousand refugees have crossed into Cameroon this year. Local officials are blaming insecurity in Cameroonian towns and cities on the refugees. Undocumented workers are being exposed to detention and exploitation.

    The UN’s refugee agency, UNHCR, is struggling to identify the undocumented workers arrested by authorities.

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    3-Zimbabwe: Mugabe says remaining white farmers must go

    Zimbabwe’s President Robert Mugabe said recently that white farmers would no longer be allowed to own land in the country.

    Announcing a new land tenure system, Mr. Mugabe indicated that the government will also encourage the financial services sector to allow farmers access to funding.

    Controversies over land ownership in Zimbabwe led to the destruction of a once-thriving agricultural sector, while economic sanctions triggered a decade-long recession that led millions to emigrate.

    President Mugabe argues that he is correcting colonial land imbalances which are skewed in favour of a few thousand white farmers.

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