President Cyril Ramaphosa has eased concerns that expropriation of land without compensation would result in placing one race over another.
He was responding to a follow-up question by DA leader Mmusi Maimane who had sought details of the assurances his newly appointed special envoys will give potential foreign investors to ensure that the National Development Plan’s growth targets are met, despite the plan to expropriate land without compensation.
Ramaphosa said the process will clearly lead to an outcome which all South Africans will be part of, such as submissions being accepted from the public on the review of section 25 of the constitution. This would pave the way for the government to expropriate land without compensation.
The president said the governing party is clear that land reform needs to go ahead.
Ramaphosa said the land is an economic resource which must be restored to the hands of the people it was forcibly taken away from, so as to improve the lives of those people.
“We want that land to be shared among our people,” Ramaphosa said.
The president said the call for land to be shared is a reasonable demand, assuring citizens that no one will be excluded from the process.
Ramaphosa said urban land would also be expropriated so that low-cost housing can be built for citizens who do not have houses.
“Those who do not have houses must have houses, those who do not have land must have land,” the president said.
He said the land issue will not be swept under the carpet but will be addressed.
Ramaphosa called on organisations and groups such as AfriForum, who are mobilising the international community against the country’s land issue, to return to the country to take part in discussions seeking solutions.
Afrikaans rights lobby group AfriForum went abroad last week to fight “racist theft” – or what everyone else refers to as land expropriation without compensation.
The lobby group are on a campaign to warn investors against land expropriation.