It was December and the school grounds were empty. Students and staff of Langata Road Primary School in Nairobi were home for the holidays, enjoying the break from lessons during the hot, sticky days.

At first no one noticed when builders moved onto the property with bricks and cement. Within two days they had built an impenetrable wall around the playground, cutting off the school buildings from the large grassy spot where students once played on the swings.

Fifteen bright young minds from Malawi, Namibia, South Africa, Zambia and Zimbabwe came together recently to brainstorm innovative solutions to combat land corruption affecting their communities.

Participants were brought to South Africa for an intensive three-day workshop, where they were mentored by leading social entrepreneurs and encouraged to develop solutions to boost integrity in the land sector, with an emphasis on cross-border collaboration. The four best projects to come out of this initiative will win seed grants to so they can be developed further. 

By Mary Jane Ncube, Farai Shone Mutondoro and Manase Chiweshe

As political parties gear up for the 2018 national elections in Zimbabwe, urban land appears to be emerging as an important campaigning tool for ruling party Zanu PF. 

Amid recent mass public protests against corruption, economic decline and an import ban on basic commodities, young people who showed loyalty to the party werepromised land.