301 research outputs found

    No. 24: South Africa\u27s Two Diasporas: Engagement and Disengagement

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    The African diaspora is increasingly viewed as a key to realizing the development potential of international migration. At the same time, there remains considerable confusion about who exactly constitutes the diaspora and which groups should be targeted for ‚Äúdiaspora engagement.‚ÄĚ For some, the diaspora consists of all migrants of African birth living outside Africa. The African Union‚Äôs definition of the African diaspora, for example, ‚Äúcomprises people of African origin living outside the continent, irrespective of their citizenship and nationality.‚ÄĚ The World Bank goes a step further to distinguish between an involuntary and a voluntary, a historical and a contemporary, component of the diaspora: ‚ÄúOver four million voluntary immigrants of African origin reside in the West. This ‚Äėvoluntary‚Äô Diaspora is distinct from the vastly larger ‚Äėinvoluntary‚Äô Diaspora that populates North America, Europe, the Caribbean, and Brazil. On matters of African development, however, the interests of both groups often intersect.‚ÄĚ Despite differences of emphasis, most definitions of the African diaspora in the migration and development literature agree on two things. First, the African diaspora is located outside the continent, usually in several different countries or regions but primarily in the North. Second, membership of the African diaspora is predicated on an interest or involvement in African development. Former South African President Thabo Mbeki, for example, conveyed both messages when he argued at the 2007 African Ministerial Diaspora Conference that ‚Äúthere is an urgent need for knowledge sharing and economic cooperation between Africa and the Diaspora.‚ÄĚ The African Union similarly notes that members of the Diaspora must be ‚Äúwilling to contribute to the development of the continent and the building of the African Union.‚ÄĚ Clearly, the African Union and African governments have little interest in engaging with those who have turned their backs on Africa for a new life elsewhere. From that standpoint, a definition of the diaspora that demands actual or potential engagement in African development makes perfect sense. What does not make sense is the idea that diaspora individuals and groups are located exclusively outside Africa. Perhaps, as Bakewell notes, this is not surprising for ‚Äúthese tend to be wealthier, better-educated and more organized groups‚ÄĚ with easier access to donor and African government officials and business groups across the globe. This may well be true, but it is also elitist, ignoring the much larger number of ordinary migrants whose ‚Äúhidden‚ÄĚ contributions to development go largely uncelebrated and unrecorded (except perhaps in aggregate remittance statistics). There is no reason why the African diaspora should not include all migrants who maintain links with Africa, and the many migrants from Africa who live and work in other African countries. This paper argues for a spatially inclusive definition of the African diaspora that encompasses all migrants of African origin wherever they live so long as they are outside their country of origin. This would include people of African origin (not just first-generation migrants) resident in the North, in the South and, crucially, in Africa itself. There are, in other words, African diasporas outside Africa and African diasporas within Africa, and the two are often closely connected. Accordingly, this paper: (a) Discusses the development rationale for a revised definition of the African diaspora, which encompasses African migrants living in other countries within the continent (b) Discusses the case of South Africa, which is a major African migrant country of origin and destination (c) Compares the African diaspora in South Africa and the South African diaspora outside South Africa (d) Reflects on the general relevance of the South African case study for our understanding of the role of the diaspora in African development

    Between North and South: The EU-ACP Migration Relationship

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    Before the turn of the century, international migration had an extremely low profile on the global development agenda. The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), for example, make no mention at all of international migration. Although a number of studies have attempted to ‚Äúmainstream‚ÄĚ migration into the MDGs after the fact, it is still largely ignored in official assessments of progress made towards them (Usher, 2005; Crush and Frayne 2007; Skeldon, 2008). According to the United Nations (UN), the silence surrounding migration in the MDGs was because it was too divisive and sensitive an issue between developed and developing countries (United Nations Population Fund [UNFPA], 2005). At the time, cooperation between North and South on the governance of migration more broadly seemed highly unlikely. Nation states in the North increasingly believed that their territorial sovereignty was under threat from irregular migration from the South, and states in the South saw their development prospects undermined by a crippling ‚Äúbrain drain‚ÄĚ to the North. Repeated efforts by the UN to convene an international conference on migration in the late 1990s were unsuccessful. Since 2000, however, international migration has moved to the top of the global governance agenda and a whole range of bilateral and multilateral partnerships have taken shape (Koser, 2010; Newland, 2010; Betts, 2011; Hansen, Koehler and Money, 2011; Koslowski, 2011; Kunz, Lavenex and Pannizon, 2011). This process began with various initiatives within the UN, notably the 2003 Doyle Report to Secretary-General Kofi Annan and his appointment of a special rapporteur on migration and development. Outside the UN, discussions about international migration gathered momentum with the appointment of the Global Commission on International Migration (GCIM) and the first UN High Level Dialogue (HLD) on International Migration and Development in 2006 (GCIM, 2005; UN, 2006). In 2007, the first meeting of the new Global Forum on Migration and Development (GFMD) was convened in Brussels. This was followed by annual meetings in the Philippines in 2008; Greece in 2009; Mexico in 2010; Switzerland in 2011; and Mauritius in 2012. The GFMD is a state‚Äźled, voluntary, non‚Äźbinding consultative process open to all member states and observer states of the UN (Omelianuk, 2008; 2012; Newland, 2012). In 2009, the major UN agencies, plus the International Organization for Migration (IOM), combined to form the Global Migration Group (GMG) with a brief to ‚Äúpromote the wider application of all relevant international and regional instruments and norms relating to migration, and to encourage the adoption of more coherent, comprehensive and better coordinated approaches to the issue of international migration‚ÄĚ (GMG, 2012). In 2010, the GMG issued a handbook for states with recommendations on how to mainstream migration into their development planning and vice-versa (GMG, 2010). Another notable feature of the ‚Äúnew optimism‚ÄĚ around international migration is the growth of cooperation on the issue within and between regional blocs of states. Regional consultative processes (RCPs) on migration, for example, now exist in many parts of the globe (Thouez and Channac, 2006; Hansen, 2010). While the original focus of many RCPs was migration management, issues of migration and development grew increasingly on their agendas. In Southern Africa, for example, the Migration Dialogue for Southern Africa (MIDSA) was founded by IOM and SAMP as a non-binding consultative forum for Southern African Development Community (SADC) states in 2002 and meets on an annual basis. Originally focussed on regional cooperation in managed migration, the MIDSA agenda has been increasingly shaped by migration and development issues. In addition to the RCPs, geographically dispersed blocs of states also moved migration and development higher on their lists of priorities: these include the Commonwealth, the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, the African Union (AU) and the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) Group of States (AU, 2006a; AU, 2006b; ACP, 2010; Gagnon and Khoudour- Cast√©ras, 2011; de Boeck, 2012; Melde, 2012; OECD, 2012; Ramphal Institute, 2012). The most recent trend is the emergence of increased dialogue and cooperation on international migration between blocs of states. The European Union (EU) has been a central player in many of these initiatives. Following the adoption of its Global Approach to Migration (GAM) in 2005, the EU pursued ‚Äúmobility partnerships‚ÄĚ with major migrant-sending regions and countries (Parkes, 2009; Devisscher, 2011; Reslow, 2012). In relation to Africa, the Euro-African Ministerial Conference on Migration and Development, held in Rabat, Morocco in July 2006, was followed by the Joint EU-AU Declaration on Migration and Development in Tripoli, Libya in November that year (see: www.unhcr.org/refworld/docid/47fdfb010.html) One of the outcomes of the declaration is the recent Africa-EU Partnership on Migration, Mobility and Employment (MME). The MME partnership commits the parties to dialogue on a broad range of issues, including diasporas; remittances; brain drain; migrant rights; the social consequences of migration; regular, circular and irregular migration; visa issues; smuggling and trafficking of migrants; readmission and return; refugee protection; the mobility of students; and harmonization processes. The partnership‚Äôs current 12-point action plan includes the establishment of an African Institute for Remittances in Addis Ababa, the implementation of the Ouagadougou Action Plan to Combat Trafficking in Human Beings and the Diaspora Outreach Initiative. In the space of a decade, how and why has migration shifted from being an issue that was of marginal interest on the international development agenda to one that is increasingly at its centre? How has one of the most contentious North-South issues of the 1990s become the focus of so much bilateral and multilateral dialogue and cooperation between them? The first section of this paper provides a possible answer to these questions, which provides a context for understanding the nature of cooperation between the EU and ACP Group of States on international migration governance

    Migration, Urbanization and Food Security in Cities of the Global South: 26‚Äď27 November 2012, Cape Town, South Africa

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    The disjuncture between food security, migration and urbanization must be overcome. It is an institutional as well as a thematic disconnect on a global scale. Food security is primarily about access to food, not agricultural production. In an increasingly urban world, the locus of food and nutrition security will no longer be rural areas and the global perspective needs to shift appropriately. Hunger is a political as well as economic problem and requires state intervention. Increasing demand for food needs to be met in ecologically sustainable ways while ensuring that the poor have adequate access to food. Migration should be considered a normal process rather than a response to livelihood failure in rural areas. More research is needed on the impact of migrants’ remittances on food security. Urbanization is about much more than the rural poor moving to cities in search of work. In fact, urbanization and migration have the potential to reduce poverty and inequality. Policies that address urban food security need to appreciate the complex relationship between household food security and a range of variables such as income, gender and household size. Climate change is causing increased migration, especially to cities, and bringing about a complex shift in food distribution patterns that includes staple foods being sent to remote rural areas

    No. 01: Hungry Cities of the Global South

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    The recent inclusion of an urban Sustainable Development Goal in the Post-2015 UN Development Agenda represents an important acknowledgement of the reality of global urbanization and the many social, economic, infrastructural and political challenges posed by the human transition to a predominantly urban world. However, while the SDG provides goals for housing, transportation, land use, cultural heritage and disaster risk prevention, food is not mentioned at all. This discussion paper aims to correct this unfortunate omission by reviewing the current evidence on the challenges of feeding rapidly-growing cities in the Global South. The paper first documents the magnitude of the urban transition and the variety of indicators that have been deployed to measure the extent of food insecurity amongst urban populations. It then looks at the way in which urban food systems are being transformed by the advent of supermarkets (the so-called ‚Äúsupermarket revolution‚ÄĚ) and the growth of the informal food economy. The final section of the paper examines the relationship between formal and informal food retail and asks whether the one is undermining the other or whether they co-exist in an uneasy, though symbiotic, relationship. Against this backdrop, the secondary purpose of the paper is to lay out a research agenda which will guide the Hungry Cities Partnership as it attempts to give greater global prominence to the critical but neglected issue of urban food systems and food insecurity

    No. 63: Dystopia and Disengagement: Diaspora Attitudes Towards South Africa

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    In 2008, South African Brandon Huntley was given refugee status in Canada by the Canadian Immigration and Refugee Board (IRB). The unprecedented decision, based on Huntley‚Äôs claim that as a white South African he was the victim of racial persecution in South Africa, caused a firestorm. Interest in the case was particularly intense in South Africa itself where the decision was derided in the media and the South African government lodged a formal protest with the Canadian government. Over 140 high-profile South African academics also filed a petition protesting the decision with the Canadian High Commission in Pretoria. Within weeks, the Canadian Minister of Citizenship and Immigration had lodged an appeal against the IRB decision with the Federal Court of Appeal. Some have claimed that the decision of the Canadian Government to seek to overturn the decision of the IRB was motivated by a desire to appease South Africa. This is highly unlikely. Rather, the Canadian government was concerned about the precedent-setting nature of the case and that it could set the stage for a flood of applications from similarly unskilled white South Africans seeking a route into Canada. In late 2010, Justice James Russell of the Federal Court of Appeal issued an extended judgment upholding the Canadian government‚Äôs appeal and sending the Huntley case back to the IRB for reconsideration. The Supreme Court of Canada declined to hear an appeal of this judgment in mid-2012, so the case will be got back to the IRB. Huntley‚Äôs lawyers are confident of a second success at the IRB, indicating that the attention given to his case will make him a marked man if he is returned to South Africa. However, Justice Russell provided a systematic and painstaking demolition of virtually every element of the original IRB decision and it seems highly unlikely that Huntley will ever be able to prove that he qualifies for refugee protection status in Canada. The case may still drag on for several more years, however, as Huntley would be entitled to institute a second round of appeals in the courts if his claim is rejected this time. In constructing a narrative to convince IRB judge William Davis that he qualified for protection under the UN Refugee Convention, Huntley and his lawyers attempted to show that he had been the victim of a series of racially-motivated personal assaults and that the state had failed in its duty to protect. None of these supposed attacks were ever reported to the police which proved rather awkward for his case. However, this was explained away with the circular argument that since the police did nothing when whites were attacked, there was no point in reporting the assaults. Huntley‚Äôs recounting of his experiences make interesting reading but they were not, in fact, central to the Davis decision. Here we focus on what Davis called the ‚Äúlifeline‚ÄĚ of the Huntley decision: that is, the case made by Huntley‚Äôs lawyer, Russell Kaplan and his sister Lara Kaplan, that all whites in South Africa are being systematically targeted because of the colour of their skin. Justice Russell rejected this argument, and the selective evidence presented by the Kaplans, in its entirety. He designated their portrayal of the situation in South Africa the ‚ÄúKaplan view.‚ÄĚ The core elements of the Kaplan view included assertions that all Black South Africans hated white South Africans; that the country was experiencing ‚Äúreverse apartheid; that black South Africans have ‚Äúno regard‚ÄĚ for the lives of white South Africans; that most violent crimes are committed by black against white South Africans; that the police will do nothing about the crimes committed against white South Africans; that white South Africans are undergoing a form of racial genocide; and that there is systematic discrimination against whites in the workplace. Justice Russell concluded that the Kaplan view was rooted in the personal experience of violent crime by the Kaplan family itself in South Africa. This paper argues that to attribute the Kaplan view purely to the negative personal experiences of the Kaplan family in South Africa is to take too narrow an interpretation. The central elements of the Kaplan view are not unique to the Kaplan family but are produced and reproduced by the white South African diaspora in Canada more generally. The evidence for this assertion comes from a survey of 1,485 South African immigrants in Canada conducted by SAMP in 2010, some 80% of whom had left South Africa after 1990. Between 1991 and 2006, just over 19,000 South Africans moved to Canada, a migration that shows few signs of letting up. Most South African immigrants to Canada are white, highly skilled and educated with many professionals in their ranks. They enter Canada as permanent residents in the economic class. South Africans in Canada are high income earners. For example, 26% of the survey respondents earn more than 200,000ayearand43200,000 a year and 43% earn more than 100,000 (compared with only 6% of the overall Canadian population.) The survey respondents reported visiting South Africa relatively often (only 18% had never been back since arriving in Canada) although only 20% return at least once a year. The rest make episodic visits and the vast majority of all visits are connected with family issues and events. Most have family in South Africa to visit. Half of the respondents (54%) have taken out Canadian citizenship and another 30% are permanent residents. South Africans in Canada are neither large nor frequent remitters. Forty-two percent had never remitted funds to South Africa and only 13% do so on a monthly basis. Patterns of asset holding in South Africa show systematic disinvestment over time. Allied to this pattern of disinvestment are low levels of interest in return migration to South Africa. The survey also collected information about the attitudes and perceptions of this group towards their country of origin. The dystopian views advanced by the Kaplan view in the Huntley case fit comfortably within a broader narrative about South Africa by white South Africans in Canada. A considerable number of survey respondents portrayed South Africa as an extremely violent society in which whites live in a constant state of fear and anxiety. Many argued that whites were targeted not because they own a disproportionate share of the wealth in a highly unequal society, but simply because of their colour. The idea that the white population is under siege because of their skin colour extends well beyond personal knowledge of incidents of crime and violence. The theme of racial targeting was driven home by the frequent use of terms such as ‚Äúapartheid in reverse‚ÄĚ and ‚Äúreverse discrimination.‚ÄĚ Attacks on white farmers feature prominently in the narratives and are used as a platform for broader commentary on the supposed brutality of Africa and all Africans. Personal and hearsay stories of violent crime were laced with vituperative accounts of the callous and indifferent response of the police and the government. Another recurrent complaint was how affirmative action discriminated against whites. There is no sympathy for or understanding of the reasons for these policies nor of how they personally might have benefited educationally and economically from the racist policies of the apartheid government. Instead, they represent themselves, and whites in general, as victims. In many cases, the sense of outrage spills over into overtly racist diatribes about Africa and Africans. To rationalise their departure, disengagement and decision never to return to South Africa, this post-apartheid diaspora draws on the same narrative reservoir of images as the lawyers in the Huntley case. It is therefore inadequate to conclude that the Huntley case was simply a rather egregious but exceptional miscarriage of justice. Huntley is, in many ways, emblematic of a more general and troubling discourse about South Africa that circulates amongst white South Africans in Canada

    No. 25: Complex Movements, Confused Responses: Labour Migration in South Africa

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    The end of apartheid undermined the rationale for apartheid-era immigration. Immigration from Europe (which had been declining in the 1980s) dwindled to almost nothing as the new government dissociated itself from the racist immigration policies of the apartheid era. At the same time, downsizing and mine closures in the 1990s led to a dramatic decline in employment opportunities for African migrants in the mining industry. Tens of thousands of local and foreign migrants were retrenched. Although the industry has recovered somewhat, and continues to employ some foreign workers, the overall numbers of temporary migrant workers remain far below the levels of the 1970s and 1980s. The end of apartheid also brought new forms of labour migration to and from South Africa including a marked growth in irregular labour migration from neighbouring countries and the rest of Africa and a major brain drain of skilled professionals, primarily to OECD countries. Since 2000, there have been two further changes. First, the volume of migration from Zimbabwe has grown dramatically as a result of that country\u27s political and economic crisis. Secondly, South Africa adopted a new skills-based labour migration policy. The first section of this paper briefly reviews the post-apartheid decline in permanent immigration and legal temporary labour migration to South Africa. The next section examines some of the new migration trends that have become increasingly important over the last two decades. Finally, the paper examines the current institutional context established by the 2002 Immigration Act. In conclusion, the paper discusses the attractiveness of South Africa for African migrants and the main challenges that face the country in the coming years concerning international migration

    Food Remittances: Migration and Food Security in Africa

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    By drawing attention to the importance of food remittances for urban and rural food security and identifying the current knowledge gaps, this report contributes to the study of the relationship between migration and food security and creates a platform for the design of a new research agenda. Across Africa, there is considerable evidence of a massive informal trade in food, including staples, fresh and processed products. While most cross-border trade in foodstuffs is a result of commercial transactions by small-scale traders who buy in one country and sell in another, an unknown proportion is actually food remittances on their way from migrants to kin in their country of origin. A SAMP survey of 4,765 migrant-sending households in five SADC countries found that goods remitting was a significant component of overall remittance flows within the region. Within countries there is now considerable evidence that urban migrant households rely to varying degrees on an informal supply of food from their rural counterparts to survive in precarious urban environments. The two case studies presented in this report are designed to highlight different facets of food remitting with potentially broader applicability. The Harare study looks at food remittances under conditions of extreme economic and political duress, and the Windhoek research provides an important example of cash remittances for food remittances reciprocity

    Vol. 3, No. 2: Spot the Alien

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    No. 06: The Point of No Return: Evaluating the Amnesty for Mozambican Refugees in South Africa

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    In the 1980s, civil war in Mozambique forced hundreds of thousands of people to flee their homes and seek refuge in neighbouring countries, including South Africa. Formal refugee status was granted only after the civil war ended, with the signing in October 1992 of a Tripartite Agreement between Mozambique, South Africa and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). The majority of these former Mozambican refugees clearly wish to remain in South Africa, as few took advantage of a UNHCR offer of free repatriation to Mozambique in the early 1990s. In 2000, an estimated 200-220 000 former Mozambican refugees remained on South African soil. The South African Cabinet decided in December 1996 that Mozambican refugees who wished to remain in the country should be given permanent residence status. This amnesty was eventually implemented between August 1999 and February 2000 by the Department of Home Affairs (DHA). Unlike earlier amnesties, a number of NGOs participated in the outreach, advocacy and monitoring components of the amnesty’s implementation. This paper presents a detailed examination of the amnesty process, including its planning, the criteria for eligibility, the information campaign, the application procedures, the problems encountered and the lessons learned. Recommendations from this document can be drawn upon to develop appropriate responses to any future refugee influx to South Africa, whether from neighbouring countries or further afield. This report was prepared by Nicola Johnston of the Wits Rural Facility
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