Land Reform: DA proposals ‘attainable without amending Constitution’
DA leader Mmusi Maimane addressed journalists gathered at Constitutional Hill on Monday to unpack why the party was opposed to expropriation of land without compensation. By PUSELETSO NTHATE.
If the EFF is successful in its call for the state to be the custodian of all land, this would effectively pave the way for the abolition of private property ownership.
“The model pursued by the EFF would strip all property owners of their property, both white and black South African. Homeowners would be stripped of their home, business owners of their businesses, innovators of their intellectual property, and more,” DA leader Mmusi Maimane said on Monday at Constitutional Hill.
A motion calling for a process in Parliament, to begin investigating changing the Constitution to allow for land to be expropriated without compensation, was supported in amended form by the ANC.
“The Constitution also makes it clear that the property does not only refer to the land,” Maimane said.
He said the party supported land restitution and land redistribution and “efforts to undo the terrible legacy of forced land dispossession”.
“The party deeply believe in the promise of the Constitution compact that we can be one nation with one future,” added Maimane.
He said the ANC once believed in the promise of the constitutional construct too, but said it has abandoned that idea altogether.
“Expropriation without compensation is state-sanctioned theft, is inimical to economic growth and development,” Maimane said.
Laying out the DA's land reform policy promises, Maimane said:
- New recipients of state-subsidised housing will receive the full title, as will past recipients of the Reconstruction and Development Programme (RDP);
- The DA will make it cheaper for first-time buyers to purchase homes through lowering of transfer costs;
- The DA will distribute the thousands of government-owned and fallow land, instead of treating emerging farmers as permanent tenants;
- It will give residents tribunal security that is recorded and legally enforceable;
- It will allocate adequate budgets to settle all remaining land restitution claims, and for land reform purposes, on the basis of the constitutional guidelines for compensation; and
- Promises that anyone who wants farm land will receive the support they need to be successful, through the transference of skills and by providing access to the resources and markets they need to sell their goods.
“All this is attainable without amending the Constitution,” Maimane emphasised. DM
Photo: DA Leader Mmusi Maimane speaks at Daily Maverick’s The Gathering, 2018. Photo: Leila Dougan