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Kwanalu

The voice of agriculture . Die stem van landbou . Izwe lezokulima

Gevaarlike wending in debat oor wysiging van artikel 25 | Dangerous twist in debate on amendment of section 25

English to follow:

31 Mei 2021

Die ad hoc-komitee wat getaak is met die wysiging van artikel 25 van die Grondwet se sperdatum vir die afhandeling van hul werk was vandag, 31 Mei. Op die laaste nippertjie het die ANC verdere wysigings aan artikel 25 voorgestel.

Dit volg op bilaterale gesprekke tussen die ANC en EFF. Die wysigings behels die uitskryf van die howe se rol in die voorgestelde artikel 25(3)-wysiging. Die EFF se voorstel is dat die hele subartikel 3, wat voorsiening maak vir vergoeding by onteiening, geskrap moet word.

Die ANC het verder tydens die vergadering van die ad hoc-komitee onverwags aangedui dat hulle ’n wysiging van die bewoording van artikel 25(5) ondersteun, wat bepaal dat die staat redelike wetgewende en ander maatreëls moet daarstel om die bevordering van die staatsvoogdyskap van grond te bevorder. Die EFF staan lank reeds die staat se voogdyskap oor alle natuurlike hulpbronne voor. Die EFF is ook ten gunste van die skrap van die 1913-datum vir restitusie-eise in artikel 25(7).

Die ad hoc-komitee het besluit om die parlement te vra vir ’n verdere 30 dae om hul werk af te handel. Hierdie sal die derde uitstel van die sperdatum vir die afhandeling van hul werk wees.

Die parlement se regsadviseurs het aangedui dat die nuwe wysigings waarskynlik buite die mandaat van die komitee val en het voorgestel dat die komitee die parlement ook vra vir ’n uitbreiding van hul mandaat en weer openbare konsultasie oor die nuwe klousules sal moet toelaat. Van die lede was egter van mening dat dit nie nodig is nie en dat al die voorgestelde wysigings binne die mandaat val om uitdruklik te stel wat stilswyend in die Grondwet is.

Agri SA het die vergaderings van die ad hoc-komitee deurentyd gemonitor.

Willem de Chavonnes Vrugt, voorsitter van Agri SA se Grond- Sentrum van Uitnemendheid, het die jongste verwikkelinge as uiters kommerwekkend bestempel. Agri SA is heeltemal gekant daarteen dat die rol van die howe in onteieningsdispute afgeskaal word, soveel te meer wanneer daar sprake is van onteiening sonder vergoeding. “Die voorstel oor staatsvoogdyskap oor grond is absoluut skrikwekkend,” het hy gesê. “Dit sal ’n skokgolf deur die landbousektor stuur.”

Agri SA is reeds besig om regsadvies oor die jongste voorstelle in te win. Voogdyskap van grond sal alle private grondeienaars ontneem van hul eiendomsreg sonder vergoeding en beheer oor alle privaatgrond aan die staat gee. Dit is ’n resep vir ’n ekonomiese en humanitêre ramp en ’n uitnodiging vir grootskaalse korrupsie, het Chavonnes Vrugt gesê.

Volgens hom is die staat se baanrekord ten opsigte van die bestuur van grond uiters swak. “Agri SA sal die voorstelle met alles in ons vermoë teenstaan,” het Vrugt gesê. Agri SA bly egter verbind tot volhoubare grondhervorming en die uitbreiding van volle eienaarskap na nuwe boere.

Navrae:

Annelize Crosby

Hoof: Grond en Regsake

Willem de Chavonnes Vrugt

Voorsitter van Agri SA se Sentrum van Uitnemendheid: Grondsake

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31 May 2021

 

Today, 31 May 2021, is the deadline for the Ad Hoc committee tasked with the amendment of section 25 of the Constitution to complete their work. The ANC had at the last minute, proposed further amendments to section 25.

This followed bilateral discussions between the ANC and the EFF. The EFF’s proposal entails the deletion of the reference to the courts’ role in the proposed amendment of section 25(3). The EFF proposes that the entire sub-section 3, which makes provision for compensation for expropriation, be scrapped.

Furthermore, the ANC, during the meeting of the Ad Hoc committee, had suddenly and unexpectedly indicated that they would support an amendment to the wording of section 25(5) which stipulates that the state must introduce reasonable legislative and other measures to promote state custodianship of land. The EFF has long promoted state custodianship over all natural resources. The EFF is also in favour of scrapping the 1913 date for restitution claims in section 25(7).

The Ad Hoc committee decided to ask Parliament for a further 30 days to complete their work, which would be the third postponement of the deadline.

Parliament’s legal advisors indicated that the new amendments probably fall outside the committee’s mandate and proposed that the committee also request Parliament for an extension of their mandate and to allow for further public consultation on the new clauses. Some members, however, were of the opinion, that this was not necessary and that all the proposed amendments fall within the committee’s mandate to state explicitly what was presently implied in the Constitution.

Agri SA has monitored the Ad Hoc committee meetings throughout.

Willem de Chavonnes Vrugt, chair of Agri SA’s Centre of Excellence: Land, described the latest developments as ‘extremely concerning’. Agri SA is strongly opposed to the scaling down of the courts’ role in expropriation disputes, and even more so when it comes to expropriation without compensation. The proposal regarding state custodianship is absolutely frightening, he said. It will send a shock wave through the agricultural sector.

Agri SA is in the process of seeking legal advice on the latest proposals. Custodianship of land will deprive all private landowners of their property rights without receiving compensation, giving control over all private land to the state. This is a recipe for an economic and humanitarian disaster, and an invitation for large-scale corruption, said De Chavonnes Vrugt.

He added that the state’s track record in terms of management of land was extremely poor. “Agri SA will oppose these proposals with everything in its power,” said De Chavonnes Vrugt. However, Agri SA remains committed to sustainable land reform and the extension of full ownership to new farmers.”

Enquiries:

Annelize Crosby

Head: Land and Legal Affairs

Willem de Chavonnes Vrugt

Chair of Agri SA’s Centre of Excellence: Land Affairs