the Problem of Asymmetry in Land Conflicts – the Powerful vs. the Poor


Land conflicts are a widespread phenomenon, and can occur at any time or place. Both need and greed can equally lead to them, and scarcity and increases in land value can make things worse.
A land conflict can be defined as a social fact, in which at least two parties are involved, the roots of which are different interests over the property rights to land. This can be understood as a misuse, restriction or dispute over property rights to land[1]
Scope of land problem:

Land conflicts occur in many forms. There are conflicts between single parties (as for instance boundary conflicts between neighbours), inheritance conflicts between siblings and disputes over the use of a given piece of land. These conflicts are comparably easy to solve. Those that include several parties though – such as group invasions or evictions of entire settlements – are more difficult to deal with. But by far the most complex land conflicts are those that include corrupt land administration and state capture.

There is a problem of asymmetry in land conflicts – the powerful vs. the poor. “Whatever the land law says, the ill-educated poor are usually defeated by the well-connected rich in any legal battle. There are quite a number of orphaned children turned to a relative after their parents died, only to find the relative apparently more interested in their property than in taking care of them

By Ms. Sarah Bireete
Deputy Executive Director (CCG)

Website Editor


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