Landmark land claim ruling made

2010-02-24 08:04

Pretoria - In a watershed finding, a land claim has been rejected because the community which laid claim to the land does not have the skills to maintain the current production.

On Friday the Land Claims Court in Johannesburg refused the Bahiring community's claim to the farms of eight landowners outside Koster in the North West.

It was found that, among other reasons, relocating the community is not feasible because the land has high agricultural potential and the farms are intensively cultivated.

Furthermore, E I Moosa, acting on behalf of the Department of Land Affairs, conceded in his closing argument that it is not within the government's financial means to successfully relocate the community.

Huge relocation costs

It would have cost the State more than R70m to buy the farms from the landowners.

It would have cost a further estimated R210m to relocate the Bahiring community's 400 families and provide equipment and other resources for them to continue cultivating the land.

The court was told that it is pointless handing cash over to communities to develop the land on which they are relocated, since the communities don't have the skills to ensure that the money is used for that purpose.

An official of the local land claims commissioner testified that none of the 330 relocation projects he currently manages in the North-West is successful.

Some of the greatest obstacles these communities face are a lack of funding and skills to maintain the agricultural operations.

Transfer of the land would have a negative impact on the "food production and economic activities" of the highly productive farms.

Current annual production


Furthermore, there is no national budget available specifically for the relocation of the community in the North-West. Each of the 400 families would only receive R6 595 from the government for relocation.

The current annual production on these farms is 1 800 calves, 5 900 tons of mielies, 400 tons of beans, 470 tons of sunflower seed and 1 080 000 litres of milk.

It was also taken into consideration that the community was compensated when they were relocated 80km away from the farms in the 1960s. At the time the farms were not commercially developed.

Peet Grobbelaar, the farm owners' legal representative, said on Tuesday that the verdict would have a major impact on other pending land claims, because this is the first time that a court has found that the relocation involved in the claim is not feasible due to the land's current use and production.

"The verdict has created a precedent because the current use and production of the land will have to be taken into account in future when it is decided whether relocation is feasible."

According to Grobbelaar, the finding also points to the total failure of government to effectively support relocation programmes.

"In short, the entire land claims plan is a failure, especially in the North-West," said Grobbelaar.


Read more on:    land claims
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Read News24’s Comments Policy

 

Inside News24

 
 

ANCYL: Not voting would be blasphemy

Not voting in the forthcoming elections would be blasphemy, the ANCYL says in a statement commemorating the 50th anniversary of struggle icon Nelson Mandela's Rivonia trial speech.

 
 

Latest elections multimedia

Why Jack Parow wants you to vote on 7 May
The ad the SABC doesn't want to air
Elections 2014 in one cartoon
This year's election posters
 
Traffic
Lottery
 
  • Thursday Sir Lowry's Pass - 05:35 AM
    Road name: Old Sir Lowrys Pass Road
    TRAFFIC LIGHTS not working at Bezweni Road
  • Thursday Cape Town - 05:35 AM
    Road name: Buitengracht Street
    TRAFFIC LIGHTS not working at Waterkant Street
 
More traffic reports...
 

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Escape winter, head to Mauritius

Escape winter by spending 7 nights in Mauritius' tropical bliss from R13 215 per person sharing. Includes return flights, airport transfers and accommodation. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Get many eggs in one basket!

Gaming bundles: 2 Super Hits games for R99, 3 Disney games for R99 and more + exclusive accessory bundles only available on kalahari.com. While stocks last. Shop now!

25% off bestselling books!

The Real Meal Revolution by Tim Noakes, Jeffrey Archer’s Be Careful What You Wish for, Man’s Search for Meaning by Victor E. Frank and many more titles. Shop now!

Up to 25% off electronics

Buy top electronics and save up to 25%. Such as kalahari.com’s 1# selling product the gobii eReader, Patriot X Porter flash drive, Asus Nexus 7” 3G tablet, Samsung Galaxy SIII, Lenovo G580 Notebook and many more. Shop now!

DStv HD PVR Decoder now R949

The DStv HD PVR Decoder has further revolutionised the television experience with lifelike viewing, sharper images, more vibrant colours and precision picture quality. Now R949, save R550. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 30% off appliances & homeware

Save up to 30% on appliances and homeware this Easter! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now.

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Apple iPad 2 White 16GB 9.7" Tablet With WiFi & 3G

Two cameras for FaceTime and HD video recording. The dual-core...

From R5727.00

I'm shopping for:

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

There may be a break through, either through quiet contemplative time to connect to your deep side or forced on you by...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.