Eric Naki
Political Editor
2 minute read
1 Mar 2019
6:42 am

Land reform still some time away, business summit told

Eric Naki

It is important that any amendment must reflect the views, not only of the public, but other stakeholders, such as traditional leaders.

Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development Minister Thoko Didiza. Picture: Twitter/@ANCParliament

The controversial amendment to the constitution to enable land expropriation without compensation is not going to happen any time soon, a business summit heard yesterday.

Thoko Didiza, chairperson of the parliamentary ad hoc committee on the amendment of Section 25 of the constitution, was briefing the media on the sidelines of a two-day Black Business Council summit in Midrand.

Didiza said a further consultation process needed to be undertaken before the section was amended. This process is a constitutional requirement.

She said the committee would meet again soon with experts who would express their views on the pending amendment. The committee would discuss the aspects that needed to be amended and how those amendments should be done.

“We must consider the steps that must be taken… There has still got to be a 30-day public hearings,” she said.

It was important that any amendment must reflect the views, not only of the public, but other stakeholders, such as traditional leaders.

“We have to develop a policy framework that will guide the amendment,” Didiza said.

Didiza said the law that governed traditional land must be amended to be in line with the new constitution. Such land was not codified and therefore insecure.

Also, the law was based on an old tenure system that failed to consider people’s individual rights, such as the rights of women to inherit land.

“A law must deal with inheritance rights. We need to ask why it disadvantaged the woman based on gender?” she said.

ANC land reform chief Ronald Lamola said the parliamentary constitutional amendment processes are not a hindrance to land reform and expropriation.

“The constitutional amendment does not stop the government from doing its job.

“Land reform must go on while parliament follows its processes,” he said.

The land reform programme was multifaceted and therefore if one side delayed, other aspects should still continue.

“All government departments must do their jobs,” he said.

ericn@citizen.co.za

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