Land expropriation a bitter pill for farmers
Farming associations have slammed the ANC’s announcement that it intends to amend the constitution to allow for land expropriation without compensation.
Transvaal Agricultural Union (Tau SA) president Louis Meintjes said in a statement that the ANC’s announcement “makes a mockery” of parliament’s public consultation process.
“The constitution is supposed to be the foundation of a country where the rule of law takes precedence to protect society against racial domination and exploitation whilst ensuring that the supremacy of the law reigns. To expropriate property without compensation remains theft in any language and as such it is the opposite of what constitutes responsible government‚” he said.
“The ease with which economic growth is used to promote the amendment of the constitution is nothing but rubbing salt in the wounds. No clear boundaries in terms of the aim‚ scope or time constraints exist and that is untenable. It also makes a mockery of the entire consultation process. If ever there were short-sighted and deplorable policy decisions‚ then we are experiencing it under the current government.”
In a late-night announcement on Tuesday‚ President Cyril Ramaphosa said the ANC will‚ through a parliamentary process‚ finalise a proposed amendment to the constitution that outlines more clearly the conditions under which land expropriation without compensation can be effected.
Agri SA president Dan Kriek said in a statement that land expropriation without compensation may make good for electioneering‚ but will not create more opportunities for black farmers.
“We are currently in a consultation process where South Africans are participating in a process of review – we have actually taken the time to participate in this process – and this announcement‚ by the governing party‚ serves only to undermine the process underway‚” he said.
“SA needs more black farmers and black farms. Constitutional amendments – and even worst-case expropriation without compensation – may make for good electioneering‚ but it doesn’t make more black farmers‚” said Kriek.