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Land reform focus 'blinkered'

Academic Lesiba Teffo says there's no need to amend Section 25 of the Constitution.
Land Academic Lesiba Teffo says there's no need to amend Section 25 of the Constitution.
Image: Adrian de Kock

Esteemed academic professor Lesiba Teffo believes the constitution does not need to be amended to make room for land expropriation without compensation.

Teffo, an academic at the University of South Africa who has been writing research papers on land reform for more than 20 years, asserted that the country and the ANC would not be having the land debate had it not been for the EFF.

But he warned that if the ANC rushes to deal with the land question, it could find itself taking reckless decisions that were similar to those in Zimbabwe that resulted in land grabs and the economy plummeting.

Teffo, who formed part of a panel of experts who spoke at the Unisa-Sowetan Dialogues in Midrand last night, said it was strange that those spearheading the current land reform were not talking about redistribution efforts that have failed in the past 25 years and asked why most of the beneficiaries were politically connected.

Teffo asserted that he was totally against land being taken without compensation from white people, arguing that the land that belongs to absent landlords or the state should instead be targeted.

Bulelwa Mabasa, a prominent lawyer and partner at Weksmans, said it was wrong for land reform critics to assume that black people wanted land just for farming.

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