"The interest in food and its impact on, and relationship with, overall development only came in the late 1990s with the World Food Summit in Rome in 1996. It was only in this period that "food insecurity" was pinpointed as the root cause of underdevelopment-related problems. The causes for "food insecurity" themselves were identified and lack of food as such was not among the first problems: discrimination, misconceived policies and many others were. Even then food security issues were linked with poverty reduction and development as a whole, making food mainly a development issue and thus considering that dealing with one meant dealing with the other. This led to the adoption of what we now call Poverty Reducation Strategy Papers, ideas that first were initiated in the late 1990s. The adoption of Poverty Reduction Strategy Papers came about as a result of the growing need for a concise, target-oriented and country-specific policy for development. They have as a key objective to "develop and implement more effective strategies to fight poverty". Still, these PRSPs are a result of long studies on "effective strategies" that stretch along many years. The what, why and when of PRSPs will be seen in detail in the following sections of this paper. One of the major areas in which most of the PRSPs focus upon, is the reduction of food insecurity. The objective of this paper is to assess just how effective these papers have been in doing so and what is the future, immediate and long term, of these papers. Is it enough to address food security issues along with poverty reduction strategies when the effectiveness of the strategies themselves is still in doubt? The paper seeks to answer this question. To this effect, the history of the right to food in the United Nations human rights system, as well as the African human right system, is outlined in greater datail. The right to food as it stands now and the current understanding of "right to food" is then set out. In order to show the relationship between food, poverty and poverty reduction strategy papers, the reasons and events preceding the creation of PRSPs will be summarized. The next step is to analyze whether PRSPs properly integrates the "current understanding" of food, food insecurity and right to food (why/why not?). In particular two examples of approaches to the right to food will be examined: the Ethiopian and the South African examples, in order to provide a comparison of two different approaches towards the implementation of the right to food: the PRSP approach as is the case in the Ethiopian example, and the monitoring, justiciability and human rights approach as in South Africa." -- Introduction.
Thesis (LLM (Human Rights and Democratisation in Africa)) -- University of Pretoria, 2003.