Trends and challenges of food security policy implementation: a case study of uMgungundlovu District Municipality.
Mbatha, Nokubonga Sindiswa Cynthia.
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South Africa faces many food security policy challenges. The main aim of this study is to investigate the governance arrangements for food security policy. This study answers the question, “what are the trends and challenges faced by food security/poverty alleviation policy implementers within uMgungundlovu District Municipality”. The objective was to analyse the current food security policy implementation challenges. This is part of a larger investigation into food security governance in KwaZulu Natal. The theory of good governance was used as the basis of the examination, with the conceptual framework presented by the World Bank and its keys elements, being used as the lens for analysis. The empirical study was undertaken by conducting interviews with respondents responsible for overseeing food security policy implementation in the Kwa-Zulu Natal Department of Agriculture and Environmental Affairs (KZN DAEA), and the District Manager in uMgungundlovu District Municipality. The data was analysed using content thematic analysis, with the themes deriving from the key elements of good governance. It was found that whilst food security policy implementers are well skilled, their knowledge of policy is limited, with some unable to understand or recognise the interaction between the legislative frameworks within which the operate. There were several key recommendations from the investigation: It is recommended that the Department of Agriculture and Environmental Affairs along with uMgungundlovu District Municipality cooperate in their efforts towards food security programmes. Secondly, the Department of Agriculture and Environmental Affairs should offer workshops to uMgungundlovu municipality experts so that they have a shared understanding on strategies to support farmers. Thirdly Government bodies should be offered programmes and courses that are more relevant for the implementation of public policies. Fourthly, it calls for the implementation of a comprehensive more universal and all-inclusive assessment of poverty and food insecurity as the achievement of food security can no longer be an agricultural issue only. This also seeks to broaden understanding of policy implementation and its challenges through a case study of food security policy.