Minister of Communications Nomvula Mokonyane announced today during a briefing after a meeting that Cabinet welcomed the adoption of the motion of land expropriation without compensation.
She said Cabinet called on all stakeholders to take part in the consultative process regarding the amendment of the Constitution to pave the way for the implementation of the motion.
This process will be carried out by the parliamentary review committee, which will report back to the House in August.
“As a caring and people-centred government, all stakeholders will be engaged during this process, and we also commit to making sure that we will appreciate any feedback that can enhance the approach towards land utilisation, both for agriculture as well as property ownership, particularly in the urban areas, without antagonising one another,” Mokonyane said.
The minister said Cabinet urged communities to desist from partaking in illegal land invasions.
She said the country remained open to business and investment into the agricultural sector as well as growing the number of commercial farmers, which, she said, could be achieved through land expropriation without compensation, and that the government wished for the realisation of transformed ownership patterns.
Mokonyane said Cabinet was satisfied that, with regards to the land issue, a lot of work had been done within the confines of the law and the Constitution.
She said if the need were to arise, then the amendment of the Constitution would be dealt with accordingly.
“Because the expropriation of land and the ownership of land goes beyond just issues of agriculture, but it also deals with issues of urban land, property ownership and water use rights for those who have access to land, including access to markets and financial support. Therefore, we will, of course, appreciate the consultations that would actually unfold,” she said.
Since the adoption of the parliamentary motion of land expropriation without compensation, the issue of racial polarisation in South Africa has once again come to the fore.
Mokonyane said all South Africans understood that historically, the racial divide in the country was too deep and that the remnants of this divide still played themselves out to this day, not only around the land issue, but also through issues such as access to schools and housing development.
She added to this by saying it would be incorrect to conclude that the white community in its totality opposed the expropriation of land without compensation.
“But it is a particular group within, precisely because of a highly politicised society we live in. There are extremes on both sides, there are extremes who just want to invade land, and there will be those that are saying you are not going to tamper with what I have and demonstrate supremacy, but both extremes do not represent the South Africa we live in, including the South Africa we are aspiring to have,” Mokonyane said.
She said Cabinet was pleased that organised formations such as AgriSA were active in the process of land reform by providing solutions and making proposals.
Mokonyane said the Cabinet was, however, concerned about the groups that approach the international community in pursuit of protecting white supremacy.
She said the government would never do anything that undermines a very strategic sector of the economy, agriculture.
“We do believe that if we have to deal with an inclusive society, we can’t have black people living behind a mine dump in Meadowlands and have white people living in the leafy suburbs, and have a city that is called a city with a self-made forest, Johannesburg, we all have to be inclusive, the freeway can’t divide Alex and Sandton forever, therefore, the land that can integrate Alex and Sandton and the neighbouring communities must help to build this new nation,” she said.
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