Par­lia­ment to em­bark on land en­quiry

The New Age (Free State) - - POLITICS - TNA RE­PORTER news@the­newage.co.za

SPEAKER of the National Assem­bly Baleka Mbete said Par­lia­ment will soon em­bark on a national land en­quiry aimed at ac­cel­er­at­ing the slow pace of the land re­form process.

Mbete made the state­ment when she tabled Par­lia­ment’s Bud­get Vote in the National Assem­bly yes­ter­day.

She said out of the 50 de­bates that Par­lia­ment held over the fifth term of Par­lia­ment, the land is­sue has been one of the most im­por­tant top­ics in Par­lia­men­tary cham­bers.

The Depart­ment of Rural Devel­op­ment and Land Re­form said the govern­ment has re­stored nearly 8 mil­lion hectares of land, which is 9.8% of the 82 mil­lion hectares of arable land in South Africa.

“Our peo­ple have long alerted us to their frus­tra­tion on the mat­ter of land re­form and it is time that we lis­ten to their voices. The most press­ing of frus­tra­tions raised by our peo­ple is the slow pace of land re­form and meet­ing tar­gets for land redis­tri­bu­tion,” Mbete said.

She said more needs to be done to en­sure that the coun­try has a law that pro­vides di­rec­tion.

“Cru­cially, we must also re­peal the 1975 law that pro­hibits sub- di­vi­sion of agri­cul­tural land.”

Mbete said Sec­tion 25 (9) of the Con­sti­tu­tion re­quires Par­lia­ment to in­tro­duce a law that se­cures the ten­ure of those whose in­se­cu­rity arises from past racial dis­crim­i­na­tion.

“Pass­ing a law that ad­e­quately de­fends the ten­ure rights of rural peo­ple thus be­comes press­ing,” Mbete said.

Baleka Mbete

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