Land reform is urgent in SA, President Ramaphosa says

Ruling party agreed constitution must allow land seizures.
Picture: Shutterstock

South Africa’s government will ensure land reform takes place as a matter of urgency without harming agricultural production, but it won’t allow people to forcibly take over farms, President Cyril Ramaphosa said.

“The return of land to who those work it is fundamental to the transformation of our society and is critical if we are to improve the lives of poor people in our country,” Ramaphosa told lawmakers in Cape Town on Wednesday. “We must work with urgency. This matter has been placed firmly on the national agenda.”

Ramaphosa’s comments come almost two months after the ruling African National Congress agreed to change the constitution to allow for the expropriation of land without compensation, a move the main opposition Democratic Alliance and farmers’ groups say will deter investment. On Feb. 27, lawmakers agreed to the principle of land seizures and told parliament’s Constitutional Review Committee to propose legal changes needed to facilitate the process.

Under the rule of European colonists, South Africa’s Natives Land Act of 1913 stripped most black people of their right to own property, a policy reinforced decades later by the National Party and its system of apartheid.

A land audit released by the government in February showed that farms and agricultural holdings comprise 97% of the 121.9 million hectares (301 million acres) of the nation’s area. Whites own 72% of the 37 million hectares held by individuals, more than two decades after the end of apartheid.

The government will make changes in land policy in a responsible manner after consultation and will follow the law, while land invasions won’t be tolerated “because that is anarchy,” Ramaphosa said.

© 2018 Bloomberg


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Australia can’t wait to snatch our farmers and put them to good use.

Many countries will invite SA farmers, including other African countries who learn’t from the same mistake

…and then future opportunity for S’Africans to go into the food importation business, sourced from Australia 😉

What would the ZAR/AUD be in say 50 yrs’ time? A bag of maize is going to cost a pretty penny…

I wonder how many would actually now consider going to farm in Zim, now that they have changed the laws to be more friendly to white farmers. This after learning the very hard way, i.e. inflation of 500 000 000 000% etc…
A lesson the anc and eff appear to be willfully ignoring.

I would actually think, that before they go ahead with all of this hoo-haa, maybe it would be a good idea to poll the citizens, especially the people who the anc thinks would benefit from this, if they actually have a.) the desire, b.) the knowledge and skills, (not just in farming, but how to run a big business, how to trade futures to hedge your crops, how to deal with workers, how to work out taxes etc…) and c.) the financial backing to continue running a commercial agribusiness?

I would think that the answer would be much lower than what anyone suspects.
I have family that are farmers, and it is damn hard work, with lots of risk, i.e. climate, disease, fluctuating commodity prices to name a few. In general, people that expect things for free are not hard workers.
Most people, including myself would not be inclined to start farming, even if i got one that was for “free”.

“In general, people that expect things for free are not hard workers.” Indeed, Carl Marx, the father of Communism was himself was a bum that sponged on his brother most of his life.

Yup, land reform is urgent….as 2019 is drawing closer to prop up ANC-votes (and the aim to amend the Constitution).

Hmmm….nice article….I’ll be forwarding this to MOODY’S Investor Services. 23 March is even closer.

People who are defending land expropriation without compensation are whites in most cases…


An accurate observation, yes.

…forget “land” , and also INCLUDE OTHER ASSETS like residential real estate, commercial & industrial property, vehicles, investments.

I have a suspicion you own a nice residence 🙂 I DEMAND to have MY name registered on YOUR property deed with a 30% share!! Or 51% share. We’ll see what Govt allows me in the end. Not interested in a piece of veld….I would like to own part of your residence. (You’ll still be responsible to carry on with rates & bond payment for us)

Does it change the picture a bit?

I am talking about the land here… not sure where you get other things to gooi in my statement

Dont put words in my mouth

It seems to be a cultural thing. White protestants have figured out that private property rights and working the land efficiently is one of the keys to a prosperous and well fed society. You don’t need many farmers, but the ones that do farm need to be very good at it. After all, farming is hard work and most people would rather sit in an air-conditioned office than work the land. Only a small percentage of whites actually own “land” in the form of farmland. In black culture it seems to be different. The chief claims all the land (and doesn’t farm it so well) and the people are not so well fed, check out Zimbabwe for an example.

The richest most well fed people on the planet use the private property + free market system, whist the poorest and most hungry people use the chief + peasants system. Which system do you think we should use?

Huh? Where do you get that from my money?

So there are 121.9 million hectares of “farms and agricultural holdings”, the ownership of which is:

22% white individuals (72% of 37 million hectares)
8% non-white individuals (28% of 37 million hectares)
70% non-individuals

I get that the 22% / 8% is not representative of the population and realise that this debate is around that, but what’s up with 70% of our farms and agricultural holdings? Who owns them? Anyone have a link to the mentioned land audit?

It is not about the actual farm land. It is about people wanting free stuff and politicians wanting votes.

Mmmm …… Sipho taking your land is anarchy, but Cyril taking your land is not ….. at least according to Cyril.

“EWC” is Cyril’s crude attempt to de-fang the EFF and his bait to EFF voters to get them back onside and it may backfire. The few reports of land invasions seemingly orchestrated by the EFF relate to land for housing (for which there is massive pent up demand); not as Cyril slyly implies about EWC, for white owned farmland. So it will be an arm wrestle, land invasions, probably onto land for housing, based on EWC, versus CR’s spineless EWC policy of “no disruption”. From Cyril’s reportedly trying to coax Malema back to the ANC, the EFF is putting up a reasonable challenge and Cyril is trying to sweeten the bait.

All interesting; er, pity it could lead to destruction of the SA economy.

There has been a few articles in the media that has shown that land is not an issue that is front of mind for most people. Jobs, education, housing etc is a much greater issue.

But I do believe that there is an unsated need for retribution amongst especially the educated, urban, middle class, black youth. Land is seen as the means to exact revenge and it feeds into the myth of Africa being a land of milk and honey before colonialism. That is why expropriation without compensation is so important. It is no punishment to buy somebody’s farm. To black people I can only say that resentment and the need for revenge is like drinking poison yourself and waiting for your enemy to die. If the 1990 settlement seems like an empty victory to you, this will not complete it. After you have the land the very same problems of a poorly educated workforce, the lack of any real competitive advantage for SA and a moribund economy will remain – probably only get worse.

On the other hand the racist undertone of most comments here “they cannot farm” ; “it is a culturual issue” essentially feeding the myth that black people by nature are inferior to whites is really not helping at all and it just confirms the reacist stereotype that white South African are viewed by our black countrymen and most of the West, apart from the odd right wing crackpot. Really makes me ashamed of being a white Afrikaans male. Hate identity politics – which makes it so frustrating when people act so stereotypically.

End of comments.



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