Ramaphosa appoints Mabuza to lead committee to accelerate land reform

2018-07-06 17:15
President Cyril Ramaphosa. (Leon Sadiki, City Press)

President Cyril Ramaphosa. (Leon Sadiki, City Press)

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President Cyril Ramaphosa has appointed an inter-ministerial committee on land reform to expedite land redistribution.

The IMC will be lead by Deputy President David Mabuza and includes nine other senior ministers. 

In a statement released on Friday, the presidency said the IMC will co-ordinate and implement measures to accelerate the redistribution of land, the extension of security of tenure, provision of agricultural support and the redress of spatial inequality. 

"The appointment of the IMC is in line with his commitment, made during the State of the Nation Address, to accelerate land redistribution programme not only to redress a grave historical injustice, but also to bring more producers into the agricultural sector and to make more land available for cultivation towards security, rural development, poverty reduction and strengthening the economy," the Presidency said. 

The ANC government has faced criticism for failing to meet its own set targets on land redistribution. After gaining power in 1994, it set itself a target of handing 30% of all agricultural land to the black majority by 2014. 

Land is expected to dominate campaigns ahead of the 2019 elections. Parliament is currently holding public hearings country-wide on whether Section 25 of the Constitution, dealing with property rights must be amended to allow expropriation of land without compensation.

On Wednesday, King Goodwill Zwelithini made a thinly veiled threat of violence and secession if the Ingonyama Trust, that oversees large portions of land in Kwa-Zulu Natal, is disbanded. Zwelithini is the Trust's sole trustee, after the Ingonyama act was enacted just days before the country's first democratic elections in 1994. 

READ: KZN traditional leaders to head to court over 'Zulu land'

Former president Kgalema Motlanthe's high-level review panel commissioned by Parliament recommended that the Ingonyama Trust Act be repealed or amended and that the trust itself be dissolved. 

READ: Traditional leaders act like village tin-pot dictators - Motlanthe

Ramaphosa was quoted on Friday morning declaring that land under traditional leaders would not be touched. He said he planned to meet with the Zulu monarch over the matter to dispel any fears the Zulu nation might have. 

"Its not government's intention to go and grab land from rural communities, land that is under the control of traditional leaders," he said during a breakfast with business people.

Other ministers who are part of the IMC are:

Minister for Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation in the Presidency, Nkosazana 
Dlamini Zuma
Minister of Rural Development and Land Reform, Maite Nkoana-Mashabane
Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, Senzeni Zokwana
Minister of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs, Zweli Mkhize
Minister of Finance, Nhlanhla Nene
Minister of Human Settlements, Nomaindia Mfeketo
Minister of Justice and Correctional Services, Michael Masutha
Minister of Public Enterprises, Pravin Gordhan
Minister of Public Works, Thulas Nxesi

Ramaphosa said he would appoint a panel of experts to provide technical support to the IMC soon "as it carries out its important task of expediting land reform through all available measures, including expropriation without compensation".


Read more on:    cyril ramaphosa  |  land  |  land expropriation

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