Gwanya reveals new land acquisition plans

Expropriation, a ceiling on the number of farms
owned by individuals and land taxes are some
of the instruments which will be used by
government to acquire commercial
farms as cheaply as possible for restitution
purposes.

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Expropriation, a ceiling on the
number of farms owned by
individuals and land taxes are
some of the instruments which
will be used by government to
acquire commercial farms as
cheaply as possible for restitution
purposes. new plans on how
high-potential properties are to
be bought are contained in a
memorandum drawn up by,
among others, chief land claims
commissioner tozi gwanya. the
memorandum will soon be handed
over to land and agriculture
minister lulama xingwana. the
plans were revealed during a
presentation on 22 august to
parliament’s agriculture and
land affairs portfolio committee.
the presentation was made by
gwanya, land affairs’ chief
director on policy and legislative
development, dr Sipho Sibanda,
and KZn land affairs director mdu
Shabane.from the presentation
it’s clear that the decision has
already been taken on how to
move away from the willing buyer,
willing seller principle, even though
the issue is still being discussed
by the post-land summit committee
in which all role players – including
cosatu and commercial agricultural
unions – are involved. all that
remains to be discussed is the
implementation of the new
policy. in their presentation to
the portfolio committee,
gwanya and his colleagues
argued that the government’s
land redistribution for agricultural
development (lrad) programme
has proven the most successful
way of obtaining land cheaply on
average, lrad land is acquired
at 33% below market value they
argued that this example should
be followed in acquiring high
potential land for redistribution
purposes to meet the
government’s target of
having 30% of land in black
hands by 2014. Sibanda said
a moratorium on the expulsion
of farmworkers could not be
implemented without the
necessary legislation. –

Chris Louw

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