Nkwinti clarifies land distribution target

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Pretoria - Rural Development and Land Reform Minister Gugile Nkwinti has clarified government's commitment to distribute 30% of the country's agricultural land by 2014.

Nkwinti told Members of Parliament during his budget vote in Parliament on Tuesday that in 1994, when South Africa had approximately 82 million hectares of white-owned agricultural land, government set itself a target to redistribute 30% of the land to the previously disadvantaged by 2014.

"This constitutes approximately 24.5 million hectares of the said agricultural land. Up to the end of the third term of this democratic state, the government had acquired 6.7 million hectares of that land, which equals approximately 26% of that 24.5 million ha target.

"This figure does not include hectares of land for which the government paid financial compensation, either because people so chose or because land could not be restored," the minister explained.

He said, therefore, land which has been restored, from 1994/95 to May 2009, amounts to 6.7 million ha plus 882 238 ha (land redistribution: 2009 to-date) and a further 368 483 ha (restitution: 2009 to-date), totaling 7.950 721m ha.

"That is about 30% of the 24.5 million ha targeted by 2014," he said.

Nkwinti added that his department was working on translating the amounts paid for financial compensation into hectares.