Land Act should be challenged - NLCF

2012-10-23 17:41
 (Duncan Alfreds, News24)

(Duncan Alfreds, News24)

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Pretoria - The Restitution of Land Rights Act should be amended, the National Land Claims Forum (NLCF) said on Tuesday.

"We believe that the act can be challenged," president Mosupye Tshwene said during a meeting in Atteridgeville on the re-opening of the land claims process.

If the act was amended, it would allow claimants who did not make the December 1998 deadline to lodge their claims.
Tshwene said these people were also entitled to their pot of gold after they or their families were displaced during apartheid.

The meeting on Tuesday was a follow-up on discussions with the office of Rural Development and Land Reform Minister Gugile Nkwinti on affidavits delivered to the department over a year ago.

Considered

The department said the reopening of land claims, which was mentioned by Tshwene, was currently being considered by an inter-ministerial committee appointed by Cabinet.

"Once the... committee has finalised its task, it shall report to Cabinet, which shall take a decision on the matter," the department said.

The NLCF expected deputy land claims commissioner Thami Mdontswa, or a representative from his office, to attend Tuesday's meeting.

However, on Tuesday morning Mdontswa denied that he had been invited to the meeting.

"Neither the department of rural development and land reform nor... Mdontswa were invited to attend or address a meeting of the NLCF," the department said in a statement.

"The deputy... commissioner held a meeting with the NLCF on 8 August and has exchanged correspondence with the forum subsequent to that meeting. None of that correspondence was an invitation to the meeting [on Tuesday]."

Tshwene said he had expected the deputy commissioner or a representative to attend because the department had enough manpower to send someone.

"It is unfortunate that they could not come."

He said the NLCF would have another meeting on 24 November to continue discussions.

- SAPA
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