Government committed to responsible land reform

Thursday, November 22, 2018

Government has reaffirmed its commitment to a responsible land reform approach that is in the best interests of everyone.

This follows Parliament’s Joint Constitutional Review Committee adopting its report that is in favour of amending Section 25 of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa of 1996.

“The amendment will make it possible for the State to expropriate land without compensation in the public interest. The committee’s report is expected to be tabled in the National Assembly for debate,” Cabinet said in a statement on Thursday.

A public consultation process saw numerous organisations making submissions and public hearings were held in all nine provinces. The Constitution has so far been amended 17 times through a consultative and inclusive process.

The statement was released on Thursday following a Cabinet meeting that was held on Wednesday at Tuynhuys in Cape Town.

Cabinet has also welcomed the Constitutional Court judgment that ruled that the Minerals and Petroleum Resources Development Act, 2002 (Act 28 of 2002), which governs the awarding of mining rights, must be read concurrently with the Interim Protection of Informal Land Rights Act, 1996 (Act 31 of 1996), which protects vulnerable land rights.

“The victory of the Lesetlheng community in North West signals a start to the recognition of land rights, which South Africa’s historically oppressed people had been deprived for generations. Where mining impacts on settlements, families and communities, people directly affected by mining must consent to any changes affecting their land rights,” Cabinet said.

Safety and security 

Cabinet has appealed to all people in South Africa to continue cooperating with the police in keeping communities safe.

Parents and guardians have been encouraged to be extra vigilant in caring for their children during the upcoming festive season.  

Cabinet pledged its support to the National Safer Festive Season Campaign, which was earlier this month launched by Police Minister Bheki Cele under the theme ‘Operation Quiet Storm’. 

The campaign is aimed at making South Africa a safer place as we approach the year-end holiday season.

“The South African Police Service will conduct nationwide operations in every town, village and township until the end of January 2019. They will focus on visible policing, whilst conducting special crime awareness and prevention operations,” Cabinet said.

Cabinet also pledges its support to the 2018 Festive Season Road Safety campaign that was launched by the Minister of Transport, Dr Blade Nzimande, in Limpopo at the weekend.

“It is in the best interests of our well-being that we all play a part in ensuring a safer festive season by driving responsibly and obeying the rules of the road,” Cabinet said. –