In his budget vote speech, Nkwinti said that the allocated budget for the 2017/2018 financial year was R10,18 billion, of which more than R5,7 billion was allocated to restitution and land reform.
In his speech, Nkwinti highlighted some of the land reform challenges facing the department.
“In terms of our Land Audit, it became clear that we still needed to conduct an audit in terms of land ownership by race, gender and nationality. The latter has already been concluded, but there are still huge challenges because of gaps as a result of the absence of information in respect of institutions, such as trusts, private and public organisations and companies, as well as sectional holdings,” said Nkwinti.
Nkwinti added that he hoped that the department would soon be able to present the second phase of the land audit to Cabinet.
During the budget debate, Dr Pieter Groenewald, parliamentary leader for the Freedom Front Plus, accused the ANC of deliberately “dragging its feet” with the land reform process and playing a “political game for political gain.” Groenewald added that he had been asking for a land ownership audit since 2004.
Groenewald added that he had been asking for a land ownership audit since 2004.
“By 2015, the ANC said in its own policy documents that the second phase of the audit would be available by September 2015. Now we are already in 2017. Why has it not been announced yet?”
Groenewald also said that it suited the ANC not to relinquish land title deeds to beneficiaries.
“So far, only one out of ten title deeds of land transferred by land reform has been handed over to the new owners. That means that 90% of the title deeds are with the government. [Therefore], the state owns the land.”