In April 2009, with the advent of the Zuma Presidency, rural development
became one of the key priority programmes for the next five years (2009-2014).
The premise of this article is that the Constitution of the Republic of South
Africa, 1996 (hereafter "the Constitution"), provides a binding framework for the
planning, coordination and implementation of development (including rural
development) as one of the key foundations of South Africa as a developmental
state. In addition, South Africa also has international obligations relating to the
implementation of the global objective of sustainable development and the
narrowing of the significant inequalities relating to income1 that characterise the
developing world (as against the developed world) of which South Africa is a
member, due to its pervasive historically race-based domestic disparities.