Cabinet welcomes motion to amend Constitution

Thursday, March 15, 2018

Cabinet has welcomed the adopted motion to amend the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa of 1996, to allow for the expropriation of land without compensation.

Government has since 1994 worked hard to reverse the legacy of land dispossession under colonialism and apartheid.

Working within the law, government has done much to ensure the continued productivity of the land, while speeding up the process of redress for those affected by land dispossessions.

Briefing the media following a Cabinet meeting on Wednesday, Communications Minister Nomvula Mokonyane said the matter has been referred to the Constitutional Review Committee, which must report back to Parliament by 30 August 2018.

“The recommendations to the National Assembly will be informed by a series of public hearings followed by committee meetings. Cabinet calls on all stakeholders to make their input during this process of engagement, which will guide the solutions to take our country forward. As a caring and people-centred government, all stakeholders will be engaged during this process,” Minister Mokonyane said on Thursday. 

Cabinet further urged communities to desist from illegal land invasions, adding that South Africa is a law-abiding and peace-loving country with adequate mechanisms of dealing with issues, including the land issue.

“South Africa remains open for business, and investments in agriculture and farming are welcome. It is in South Africa's interests to have commercial farmers, and this process can ensure we have even greater numbers of successful commercial farmers,” Minister Mokonyane said.

Wildlife Economy Project 

Meanwhile, Cabinet has welcomed the launch of the Nofingxana community’s Double Drift Wildlife Economy Project by Minister of Environmental Affairs, Dr Edna Molewa.

Launched last Wednesday at Double Drift Nature Reserve in the Eastern Cape, the initiative enables access to start-up game or wild animals, which in itself fosters the ownership of game in the hands of communities, particularly the previously disadvantaged.

It further advances the interface between communities and protected areas, which in turn contributes to promoting sustainable livelihoods through ecotourism, job creation and protection of natural and cultural heritage.

The launch also included the handing over of the title deed to the Likhaya Lethu Communal Property Association (CPA) on behalf of Rural Development and Land Reform Minister, Maite Nkoana-Mashabane.

The Double Drift Community were dispossessed of their residential and grazing rights by the 1913 Land Act.  In 1994, the community lodged a land claim which was settled in 2012, resulting in Likhaya Lethu CPA being established.

The Likhaya Lethu CPA consist of 1 500 Double Drift Community members, who received R6 million from the Department of Environmental Affairs to develop a Wildlife Economic business venture in the farm Naudeshoek (1400 hectares). The transaction was processed through the Department of Rural Development and Land Reform. –

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