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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Waterlaws, prior rights and government apportionment of water in Swaziland, Southern Africa
Author:Heilbronn, S.G.
Periodical:Journal of African Law
Geographic term:Swaziland - Eswatini
Subject:water management
Abstract:The countries of Southern Africa are facing growing demands for water, mainly required by agriculture and industry. A trend towards increased government control over water rights is discernable. In the case of Swaziland, a series of broadly riparian water laws, and a primarily irrigated estate-based system of agriculture have led to a markedly unequal distribution of surface-water rights. The scattered areas known collectively as Swazi Nation Land have doubled in total size in the last 74 years; yet only recently have irrigated estates been established on this land. It is suggested that the historical interaction of legal and economic forces, followed by government apportionment practices, has led to the entrenchment of prior rights. This has concentrated the control over surface water resources in the hands of irrigate-estate owners in general, mainly located on Title Deed Land. Water concentration exists not only between the two land law regimes, but within them. The government is being forced to re-evaluate the nature and quantity of the prior rights that have protected, with a view to using the water law in the promotion of development. Notes.