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No land invasions in SA - Zuma

2010-04-29 14:13

Johannesburg - There will be no Zimbabwe-style land invasions in South Africa, President Jacob Zuma said on Thursday.

"There will be no similar kinds of land invasions in this country, because we do things within the law," Zuma said at a constitutional symposium in Johannesburg.

Zuma did not mention Zimbabwe specifically, but fears that South Africa would go the Zimbabwe route in terms of land invasions had been raised by civil society groups and opposition political parties.

Land redistribution


Zuma said the current land redistribution method must however be revisited.

"Significant changes will need to be made to the 'willing buyer, willing seller' model.

"Government is investigating less costly ways of land redistribution."

He said the government was working on a much more "pragmatic" formula.

"The general view is that the 'willing buyer, willing seller' model has not worked appropriately or adequately thus far.

"It is very important, however, that it's done within the ambits of the law," he said.

In a wide-ranging address, Zuma spoke about transformation, the independence of the judiciary, defending the Constitution and respect for cultural diversity in South Africa.

Diversity


He said he would be opening a debate very soon to challenge South Africans to be "in dialogue about ourselves, about who we are".

"We have never as a nation tried to unpack this diversity."

He said the Constitution tells us to respect each other's cultures, however "some give themselves the authority to judge others".

It was important for the soul of the nation to talk about diversity.

"We are united in our diversity... we need to reach a point where we all agree. Let us respect each other's cultures."

He said this dialogue would not be driven politically or by government.

"It would give a chance for every South African to say who we are, what we are, and how must we handle ourselves as a nation," he said.

The constitutional symposium, organised by the Black Management Forum, was looking at unintended consequences of certain sections of the Constitution.