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Norwegian University of Life Sciences, Ås (2019)

The politics of land acquisition in Sudan : the case of El-Gerief East, Khartoum

Abdel Rahman, Yousif Badawi

Titre : The politics of land acquisition in Sudan : the case of El-Gerief East, Khartoum

Auteur : Abdel Rahman, Yousif Badawi

Université de soutenance : Norwegian University of Life Sciences, Ås

Grade : Master 2019

This study examines the politics of land acquisition in Sudan, exploring the subject empirically through an ethnographical case study of the land acquisition of El-Gerief East in Greater Khartoum. The main goal of the study is to contribute to the theoretical and empirical understanding of the land acquisition process in Sudan in its local, regional and global dynamics. Theoretically, the thesis has utilized a broad political economy approach and, in particular, the analysis of the power of exclusion by Hall, Hirsch and Li. The case illustrated that assemblages of powers were used to exclude the residents and land owners of El-Gerief East from their land. Those powers are chiefly regulation, legitimation, the market and force. Furthermore, political and administrative corruption were powerful tools of exclusion. The case illustrated that private registered land can be acquired and expropriated in the same way as customary land. A process of "licenced inclusion" however, reflected in the case in form of the State allocating land to favoured social and politically affiliated groups. The case illustrated that land acquisition is land grabbing in some of its aspects ; land grabbing in the case and in Sudan in general, is identified as being driven by political elites. The counter resistance social movement represented in El-Gerief East Community Sit in is a mature social movement that fulfilled the definition of a social movement and is characterized by a flexible structure, as well as being task oriented and consensus based. It is the means by which a marginalized community has shown that they have a powerful voice, especially as their activities have been conducted in defiance of a lack of consent from the State. The sit-in has set a historical precedent in Sudan, as this is the first movement to create an ongoing and long-standing series of resistance activities which embody an emancipated social, political and cultural awareness. The study ascertained that through structural exclusions (political, socio-economic and legal) produced by the political elite at the macro level of Sudan, land acquisition in El-Gerief East has been affected. The connections between land grabbing, crisis and vulnerable urbanization as an outcome in the case of Greater Khartoum, raises the need for more research to link the combination of crisis, vulnerable urbanization, and land grabbing.


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