Zuma: Less land for foreign hands

2011-01-08 19:24
Johannesburg - President Jacob Zuma on Saturday said land owned by foreigners might be restricted in a bid to revive lagging reforms to transfer land to the black majority.

Zuma was speaking at the ANC's 99th anniversary in Polokwane in an address that also stressed economic transformation and more jobs ahead of local elections later this year.

"In order to have more land available for land reform and restitution, government is looking at three forms of land holding," he said.

"These are state land that can only be held through leasehold, freehold with limited extent on private land, and foreigners will be allowed to lease land but ownership will revert to South Africans."

South Africa plans to overhaul its underperforming reforms, that once aimed to transfer 30% of land held by whites during apartheid to blacks by 2014, but new legislation has been repeatedly delayed.

"Restoration of the land to the people has always been an integral part of the struggle for freedom," Zuma told delegates at the conference.

"Land reform will now be based on the de-racialisation of the rural economy."

More promises

Zuma, whose party faces pressures over rampant joblessness and service delivery, said economic transformation was key for the benefits of democracy to be shared and for job creation.

"Political emancipation without economic transformation is meaningless," he said, saying the wealth of the country should be shared by all.

Tasked with fighting an official jobless rate of 25.2%, which unofficial figures put at above 40%, Zuma said black South Africans were most affected by widening poverty and inequality, he said.

"2011 will be the year of job creation through meaningful economic transformation," he said in the party's annual statement.

"We still have unacceptable high levels of poverty and inequality."

Zuma also unveiled new education financing for needy students in their final year of university which will convert to a full bursary if they graduate.

Read more on:    anc  |  jacob zuma  |  land  |  economy

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