The Economic Evolution of a Former Homeland Capital: The Case of Siyabuswa, KwaNdebele

Mahlangu, Gladys
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg
Homelands, also known as Bantustans, played a significant role during apartheid to foster the vision of separate development set out by the apartheid government. As a result homeland small towns have inherited a legacy of spatial inequality in terms of being located far from social and economic opportunities. The study seeks to understand the current status of a former homeland capital, particularly investigating how it has economically evolved and survived over time in spite of its past condition. The study was conducted in Siyabuswa, Mpumalanga Province, a former homeland capital of KwaNdebele. In investigating how the former homeland capital has evolved the study interviewed 21 households that currently live in Siyabuswa, together with the LED manager and property managers of the township. It can be concluded that such places are experiencing declining populations and struggling to diversify their economic base. However the investment by government has significantly contributed to the survival of these places in addition to the social capital that exist in such places hence there are still people who reside there. It is important that homeland small towns are understood in their current context in order to implement appropriate policies that will assist in the development of former homeland towns. Recommendations have been provided indicating alternatives for which how such places can be better assisted in improving their status- quo.
Planning Honours Report 2015, Wits University
Homelands, apartheid, spatial inequality, economic evolution, LED, government, Mpumalanga
Mahlangu, G (2015). The Economic Evolution of a Former Homeland Capital: The Case of Siyabuswa, KwaNdebele, Johannesburg