Malema and the Section 25 land debate: Full transcript

EFF leader says it can’t be correct that less than 10% of the population owns almost more than 75% of the land (28 Feb 2017)

Debate in the National Assembly on possibly amending Section 25 of the constitution, Tuesday, 28 February 2017


(Draft Resolution (Mr N F Shivambu))

Mr J S MALEMA: Hon Speaker and the leadership of the EFF, this is a motion that seeks to unite black people in South Africa and ordinarily - if leadership was provided, we shouldn’t be having this debate because the land should have been returned into the hands of the rightful owners.

We all know that the Dutch gangsters arrived here and took our land by force and the struggle has since been about the return of the land into the hands of rightful owners. Yet those who went to negotiate on behalf of our people during the negotiations sold out this fundamental principle which constituted the struggle against colonialism.

So, those who claim to be radical enough and who want radical change today should actually be in the forefront of agreeing that this Constitution must be changed to make it possible for our people to own the land.

It can’t be correct that less than 10% of the population owns almost more than 75% of the land and those people who own the land happen to be - in an acceptable language, ‘private people like individuals, trusts and companies,’ but when you search deep as to who are these people, they are white people who are still owning our land.

We remain a conquered nation even when we claim to have democracy. We remain a conquered nation because white monopoly capital still owns the means of production and the centre of that is the land question.

The dominance of white people cannot go away, particularly white supremacy for as long as land is not returned into the hands of the people.

We are the only country where we say revolution has taken place yet those who were oppressing us have not lost anything after the revolution.

We remain as we were even before 1994. So we are saying that black of people - all of us, need to unite and amend the Constitution so that we can expropriate land without compensation. [Interjections.]

There is no white person who will understand that clarion call because they don’t know the pain of being landless. Only those who have gone through a passage of being landless will appreciate where we come from on the issue of the land.

The issue of the land cannot be a campaigning issue. The issue of the land cannot be a rhetorical question. The issue of the land should be the issue of commitment.

Hon members, we have taken an oath here and when we take an oath, we are simply saying we are loyal to the land. But how can we be loyal to the land which is in the hands of private individuals. We must be loyal to the land that belongs to us.

The majority of our people say South Africa belongs to them, yet they do not have proof to show that indeed South Africa belongs to them because many of them do not even know how a title deed looks like.

Many generations died without even knowing how a title deed looks like. It is only through the expropriation of land without compensation that our people will be the rightful owners of this country. We cannot keep on saying that South Africa belongs to all who live in it, yet we have nothing to show.

Today the ANC should come with the EFF - there is 6% available, we give it to you with no condition to amend the Constitution and take the land. If you don’t agree with us today, it means you are disagreeing with hon Ayanda Dlodlo.

If you don’t agree with us today it means you don’t agree with your outgoing President on the issue of expropriation of land without compensation. Even to the Minister of Rural Development and Land Reform, I say this is a matter that can unite black people.

This is a matter that all of us should stand together for and isolate white monopoly capital. This is a matter that indicates to us that this is a genuine call which we as black people can identify with. The ANC ...

Sepedi 15:05

 ... re re 6% ke ye yona; re le fa yona. A re tšeeng lefase re lemeng. A re tšeeng lefase re ageng difeme. A re tšeeng lefase re le fe batho ba rena ba be le magae; ba be le ...


 ... a place to call home. Hon Nzimande have already started taking the land. If you vote against this, it is a waste of time. We are already giving our people the land and we are not ashamed of that. People of South Africa, where you see a beautiful land, take it, it belongs to you. [Interjections.]

Ms P C NGWENYA-MABILA: Hon Speaker and hon members, we know the history of the land dispossession. We also know how we are going to address that. We are not going to be told what to do. We are not in alliance with anyone else. We are a ruling government. 

We agree as the ANC that the land reform process is slow that is why various programmes have been initiated to address the land question. But we disagree with the motion tabled by hon Shivambu. We totally reject that we amend section 25 (2) of the Constitution.

Expropriation of land should be done for public purpose and public interests, not for the EFF purpose and the EFF interests. Secondly, expropriation without compensation is unconstitutional. We need to respect and uphold the Constitution as citizens of this country and moreover as members of this House.

Expropriation must be subject to just and equitable compensation as indicated in section 25(2)(b) of the Constitution, the amount of which and the time and manner of payment of which have been agreed to by those affected or decided or approved by a court.

We still believe that if there is a dispute between parties our courts will play a role in mediating. Expropriation with compensation takes into account the current use of the land; the history of acquisition; the market value of property; the extent of the state investment and subsidy in the acquisition; and beneficial capital improvement of property.

We don’t agree with the establishment of the ad hoc committee in terms of Rule 253(1)(a) and (3), to address the loopholes of the Constitution.

We believe that the Constitution is the supreme law of the country therefore it cannot be reviewed by the ad hoc committee.

As you have mentioned Hon Shivambu that Parliament has a Constitutional Review Committee, it is therefore the responsibility of that committee to review the Constitution, not the ad hoc committee. The Constitution will be reviewed when it’s necessary. Therefore, the issue of the ad hoc committee falls of.

The issue of intensive public consultation is a constitutional matter, no question about it, as section 59 of the Constitution clearly indicates that

Parliament must involve the public in all the legislative processes. That is why we respect the decisions of the courts if they decide that no sufficient public participation was done such as in the Expropriation Amendment Bill and the Restitution of Land Rights Amendment Bill to mention the few. Therefore, it is our responsibility to restart the process and ensure that there is an intense public participation.

The ANC’s Ready to Govern document has four pillars. One of them is to overcome the legacy of inequality and injustice created by colonialism and apartheid in a swift progressive and principled way. That is what the ANC government is doing guided by its policies, not by the EFF.

The 53rd national conference of the ANC in 2012, confirmed the resolution taken in the 52nd conference of 2007 on rural development, agrarian change and land reform. Furthermore, the 53rd national conference of the ANC adopted the National Development Plan, NDP, which sets out the country’s vision for the period up to 2030.

To address the land issue and the land ownership, the following legislations were enacted: the Upgrading of Land Tenure Rights Act, Act 112 of 1991, the Provision of Land and Assistance Act, Act 125 of 1993, the Communal Property Association Act, Act 28 of 1996 and the Labour Tenants Act, Act 3 of 1996. We agree that the implementation of these Acts is very slow. We need to do more.

The Restitution of Land Rights Act, Act 22 of 1994, was passed and it makes provision for the restitution of the rights of land to persons or communities disposed of such rights after 19 June 1913 as a result of the past racially discrimination laws or practices. To administer this Act, the Commission on the Restitution of Land Rights and the Land Claims Court were established. This Act indicates that the Minister is authorised to purchase, acquire in any other manner or expropriate land or rights in land for the purpose of restitution.

Restitution process is slow due to many reasons such as high prices of land, conflicts amongst beneficiaries, court cases taking long to be concluded and some

beneficiaries opt for financial compensation instead of land which undermines the land question. We acknowledge that the land reform is very slow, but it must be done within the prescripts of the law.

The willing-seller, willing-buyer principle resulted in the state paying inflated prices for land which contributed to the delay of the land reform process. Even if that was the case, we need to address this matter soberly.

The commission has settled 79 208 land claims as at 31 January 2017, for one million beneficiaries and 408 000 households which accounts to 3,3 million hectares. From 1994, restitution has spent more than R36,5 billion of which R11 billion was for financial compensation.

There are 6 988 claims outstanding which were lodged by December 1998, but there are plans in place to deal with this and fast-track the restitution process. 

The high prices charged by sellers will be addressed by the Office of the Valuer-General which has been established in terms of the Property Valuation Act, Act 17 of 2014, to ensure that government pays just and equitable compensation. Let’s give the Valuer–General time to do his work and we will see the difference with regard to the land price.

The department is currently busy with consultations with regard to exceptional policy which will address those people whose land has been taken before 19 June 1913, which will include the Khoi and the San, the heritage sites and the historical land marks as decided by the 53rd conference of the ANC that there be exceptions to the 1913 cut off date.

The strengthening of the relative rights of the people working the land was proclaimed by the Minister in 2014. It’s also one way of addressing skewed land ownership. It has started and it will be extended to other areas. The department is busy drafting policy on the regulations of land holdings to ensure that South Africans own land and foreigners must be leased the land.

In Polokwane the ANC reaffirmed that the comprehensive land audit be done and phase 1 was completed. The department is in the process of finalising phase 2 of the land audit to ensure that equitable land allocation and use across race, gender and class is realised.

The establishment of the institutions such as the Land Right Management committees and Land Rights Management Board will assist in involving the local people in the regulation of the land use and distribution when the Extension of Security of Tenure Amendment Bill has been passed.

The department has been able to scale up Recapitalisation and Development Programme, Recap, and comprehensive agricultural supports by providing farming implements, seeds, livestock and irrigaion infrastructure. The Recap has improved the economic condition of other beneficiaries such as the Ravela beneficiaries, Marinda and others. Currently, 1 496 farms are under Recap since 2009, which constitute 421 846 million hectares amounting to R4 billion. Some projects are productive and others are still experiencing challenges.

As South Africans we have to respect and uphold the Constitution. It is therefore amazing when other Members of Parliament who are lawmakers influence people to grab land instead of educating and advising them. We are hon members and let’s behave as such, not as horrible members. Expropriation without compensation is unconstitutional.

As ANC we agreed that the land reform process is slow, it needs to be accelerated. We don’t support this motion. We still believe that just and equitable compensation is a solution like in any other African countries such as Lesotho, Zambia, Malawi and Namibia. Therefore, #Themotionmustfall. I thank you

Afrikaans: (15:15)

Dr A LOTRIET: Speaker, die Handves van Menseregte is die hoeksteen van demokrasie in Suid-Afrika wat die regte van almal verseker en wat die demokratiese waardes van menswaardigheid, gelykheid, en vryheid bevestig. Geen wysiging van enige artikel van die Grondwet mag hierdie basiese waardes skend nie.

Die Grondwet het ook ’n dubbele rol deur, aan die een kant, hierdie waardes te beskerm en, aan die ander kant, te verseker dat onregte van die verlede aangespreek word, veral grondonteiening wat tot onmeetbare sosiale en ekonomiese verwoesting gelei het.

Die vraag voor ons vandag is of artikel 25 in die weg staan van grondhervorming. Sal grondhervorming inderdaad versnel word deur vir onteiening sonder vergoeding voorsiening te maak? Wat sal die gevolg wees as vergoeding verwyder word?


Let us look specifically at what section 25 allows. It is important to note that section 25 does not guarantee property rights but merely protects it from arbitrary state interference. Deprivation that is not arbitrary is permissible.

Contrary to popular belief, the property clause does not carry the phrase “willing-buyer, willing-seller”. This is often quoted as the reason for the lack of land reform, but the Constitution does not lay down that standard. It includes market value as only one factor amongst five that must be taken into consideration. The property clause allows for the court to determine the compensation, and the only requirement is that it must be just and equitable – in line with the guiding principles of the Constitution.

The Constitutional Court judgment in the Haffejee case made it clear that the state may expropriate property even when the seller is refusing to accept a reasonable offer or even before compensation has been determined. Thus compensation remains a requirement for expropriation but not a prerequisite. Therefore, it cannot be seen as the stumbling block.

The dispossession of land where people lost their ownership has caused tremendous pain and a loss of dignity. Security of property ownership, however, provides the opportunity of living a life of dignity beyond mere existence. It protects the poor against a predatory state. Expropriation without compensation, as a constitutional principle, will create insecurity and uncertainty of property ownership for decades to come. It can indeed again make the kind of dispossession experienced during apartheid a possibility.

It is clear that it is not section 25 that stands in the way of land reform; it is, in fact, enabling it, ordering it. What stands in the way is government’s implementation of it.


Wanneer daar ’n oproep is om onteiening sonder vergoeding wat teen die basiese waardes en regte, spesifiek eiendomsregte van die Grondwet gaan, moet ons besin oor of ons inderdaad gehoor en uitvoering sal gee aan die tipe samelewing soos voorsien in die Grondwet.

Die DA is ten gunste van eiendomsregte vir die armstes in ons samelewing. Om vergoeding uit te haal, druis lynreg in teen die DA se visie van ’n regverdige oopgeleentheidsamelewing vir almal van ons. [Applous.]


Ms N V MENTE: Speaker, last Friday, Mr Zuma, the outgoing President of South Africa, spoke in Pretoria and said the following:

“How are we going to achieve all the goals mentioned in the state of the nation address and all the laws and policies that we are busy amending to enable faster land reform, including land expropriation without compensation as provided for in the Constitution?”

Today, you distort that.

Whilst debating the state of the nation address, Mr Gugile Nkwinti seated here said there is a need to have a law that makes it possible for the state to expropriate the land without compensating illegitimate landowners. Then, the Deputy Minister, Ms Ayanda Dlodlo, emphasised that we must take back the stolen land without paying those whose claim to it is an outcome of historical injustices.

The ruling party has been speaking about radical economic transformation, and the EFF stands here to proclaim that radical economic transformation without expropriation of land without compensation is hot air.

We are here to suggest a practical proposal to cogently address the more than 350-year historical injustice of land theft and alienation perpetrated by a minority of white settlers against African people in the country and dispel the notion by the Premier of the Western Cape, Helen Zille, that 45% by now belongs to black people. That is not true. It is a mere 30%. Only 8% of land has been bought for billions of rand so far, and it will take 100 years to buy at least 30% of the land.

Central to the post-1994 land reform agenda is section 25 of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, which provides for the three-tier land reform programme. However, in the same Constitution is the controversial property clause, section 25(1), which reads as follows:

“No one may be deprived of property except in terms of law of general application, and no law may permit arbitrary deprivation of property.”

Section 25(2) of the Constitution does provide for the expropriation of land for both public purpose and in the public interest, but it states clearly that such expropriation must be subject to compensation. Section 25(3) enjoins the state to pay what it calls “just and equitable” compensation, taking into account a number of factors, including the history of how the land was acquired and the market value of the land.

Therefore, section 25 of the Constitution provides two irreconcilable imperatives. Firstly, it provides for redress for historical injustices through land reform.

Secondly, it also entrenches the principle of protection of private property rights, which is inimical to comprehensive land reform. Comprehensive land reform would be impossible to attain within the current constitutional framework that protects intergenerational dispossession and imposes a framework of the protection of private property rights acquired through a long process of plunder.

The resolution of this question is directly linked to the decolonisation of our country and overcoming the colonial tribal divisions, apartheid artificial identities, and an end to white supremacy. The resolution of the land question is basically about creating a new society based on values, equality, and democracy for all.

Therefore, that is why, today, we are offering you our 6% so that we can deal with section 25 of the Constitution. Thank you. [Applause.] [Time expired.]

Prof C T MSIMANG: House Chair, the IFP strongly supports the call for government to accelerate the allocation of land to the millions of landless Africans. The IFP goes further to emphasise that government should prioritise such redistribution to those who need the land most – the homeless people in our towns and cities.

In 1994, government was rightly applauded when it repealed all legislation constraining African people’s movement to urban areas. The repeal ushered in an unprecedented influx of Africans to our towns and cities. This has made South Africa the most urbanised country in Africa, with 62% of South Africans becoming urbanised. Government must have anticipated this and developed strategies to accommodate this influx, yet nothing had been done.

Many of these nationals have formed homeless people’s organisations to bring their plight to the attention of authorities but to no avail. Many still have to resort to land grabbing where they build their squatter camps. We are advised against using the term “squatter camps” in favour of more glorious terms such as “informal settlements”, yet there is nothing glorious about squatter camps. You call them by any other name – they remain squatter camps.

Government encouraged these people to venture to city life but has failed to generate jobs for them. In the squatter camps, the cities cannot even offer them basic services. They are regarded as temporary sojourners, yet there is no development in rural areas to stem the tide of urbanisation or attract them to return to the rural areas.

We talk here about people who live in squalid conditions. Many of them are not only homeless but also poor and unemployed. They live in areas that are not fit for human habitation. They live on sinkholes where their shacks can collapse at any moment. We are talking about people who build on river banks, such as the Jukskei in Johannesburg which, when in flood, washes away their homes, taking all their property and even taking lives. Ironically, residential land in our cities is state owned. Municipalities do not need to negotiate with willing sellers to access it.

Turning now to the 30% farming land that was promised to the black people, the IFP agrees that progress has been very slow and, therefore, supports appropriation with the payment of fair compensation. I thank you. [Time expired.]

Mr A M SHAIK-EMAM: Hon House Chair, hon members in the House and distinguished guests in the gallery, once again we are called upon to deliberate on the challenges faced by the people in our country who were removed from and dispossessed of their land in the most inhumane manner. This pain and suffering was endured by our people under the apartheid regime, and let me reiterate - the apartheid regime was not only made up of white South Africans. There were many others of different races who colluded with the apartheid regime and who conducted their affairs under a divide-and-rule policy. [Interjections.]

What is very clear, and what we must agree on is that the principle of willing-buyer, willing-seller has failed. What we must agree on is that the pace with which we are addressing the challenges of the restitution of land is not good enough.

What we must admit is that those who are holding onto the land which, we all know, is a very small percentage of people owning more than approximately 70% of the land, cannot be allowed and tolerated any longer.

Another very important point is this. When this land was taken away from our people – and we must not forget that prime land was taken away from our people – they were sent away to go and live in the rural areas and outskirts, where there were no amenities or facilities, whatsoever. So, when we are now going to provide land to these people, we must take that into consideration.

No amount of financial contribution or compensation is good enough. What we need to do and must do is to provide each and every South African family in South Africa with land which is their right and which belongs to them. The land belongs to everyone who lives in it. That is why, with the statement that we want radical economic transformation, the very first step in the country would be to ensure that every South African has their dignity and identity, which must start from that land.

We do agree with the expropriation, since the willing-buyer, willing-seller principle has failed. As for compensation, yes, again, one needs to address what they took, where that land existed, its value at that stage, and what they are going to get paid. So, compensation must now not necessarily be based on prime land that they might own right now.

Dispossession continues. Take the area, right now in Woodstock, where people are being removed. Yet we are doing nothing about it. Judge Essa Moosa, who died on Sunday, was one of the victims who was moved and removed from District Six. So, let us expedite and accelerate this process of restitution. Thank you. [Time expired.]

Mr M L W FILTANE: Chair, I shall not trumpet it, I will trump it! The UDM supports the motion.

The ruthless exploitation of the black people in their country, the seizure of their land and the enforced harnessing of their labour leaves the indigenous citizens with only voting power but nothing to effect fundamental change in their daily lives.

They are dehumanised, with no security and no social or economic worth in their motherland. Food and shelter are no longer freely shared amongst the people because they don’t own land to build shelter and produce food on.

The whole point of the freedom struggle was the repossession by African people of all its properties from the hands of the colonisers who had captured it through the barrel of a gun. Early freedom songs were about the land, such as ...


Thina sizwe esimnyama,

Sikhalela izwe lethu

Elathathwa ngabamhlophe

Mabawuyeke umhlaba wethu.


Chief Maqoma once told a colonial soldier, Col Wade, that:

“... we are to have the land again. It was bequeathed to us by our ancestors; to hold, nurture and make it productive for their progeny ... You came out of the sea to our land. Like a serpent you emerged from the water ... Besides, you had no tongue or speech for us. We waited to hear why you had come. Instead, we heard you were settling and taking possession of our land.”

He continued:

“But this is our land. ... You made us vanish, not exist. Our land is us, we are our land. ... From the sea you had no cattle. Now you have many cows and sheep ... War you made to dispossess. ... Blood you spilled to take even more. ... We cannot give up, we cannot rest. Without land, we cannot be.”

[Interjections.] At the heart of the land question in South Africa is how to reverse the dire effects of the diabolical Natives Land Act which was intended to legalise land robbery, starting with the settler colonisation. It is about the large-scale redistribution of land to contribute to the transformation of the economy and the eradication of poverty, both in rural and urban areas.

The current provisions of section 25(7) of the Constitution confine the period of dispossession to after 19 June 1913. As illustrated above, the dispossession of Africans was already moving towards its third century at the time of the 1913 Natives Land Act, and many wars of resistance were fought.

To the ANC, I say that the current owners of the land inflate prices such that government intentions to acquire it are impossible to achieve. I was speaking to people only yesterday and they say there are no sales of farms going on anymore because they keep on shooting up the prices.

Our Constitution does allow for the amendment of itself. So, to the ANC I say it is not unconstitutional to push for this. Don’t mislead people – not deliberately. In this regard, our Constitution must provide for the return of land, and if needs be, compensate only for the improvements made on the land and do not buy back our own land. This means that the programme for the return of land to the tillers must be swift, radical and must uproot the interests of the minority landowners. I thank you. [Applause.]


Dr P J GROENEWALD: Agb Voorsitter, hierdie debat is ’n baie belangrike debat. Die mense en die grondeienaars van Suid-Afrika moet mooi luister.

Daar is ’n gedagte dat as daar gepraat word van grond en grondonteiening, verwys dit net na boere en landbougrond. As dit gaan oor onteiening, gaan dit oor elke eienaar van grond. Of jy nou ’n huis besit in ’n dorp of in ’n stad, of ’n plaas, raak dit jou. As daar gesê word dat daar onteiening sonder vergoeding moet wees, moet jy weet dat jou huis in die dorp of in die stad, of jou plaas is dan ter sprake.


Hon Chair, it is really a pity that the white people are always made the scapegoats when it comes to land reform. [Interjections.] Let me put it quite clearly. The rightful owners of property and land in South Africa are those people who paid, worked hard, who paid for the land and who have a title deed at the Deeds Office. [Interjections.] Those are the rightful owners of land and you will not be able to just come and take it. That is not possible.

South Africa is a constitutional democracy. [Interjections.]

The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr C T Frolick): Order, hon members!

Dr P J GROENEWALD: Any land will have to go through a constitutional process if you want to expropriate it.

Please, stop blaming the white people for everything that goes wrong. [Interjections.] It is the incompetency of the governing party that cannot ensure that there is enough land expropriation or land reform in South Africa.

More than 5% of all land ends up in the open market, annually.

The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr C T Frolick): Order, hon members!

Dr P J GROENEWALD: Some of those properties, especially some farms, are priced below market value because of the drought. So, the government is in such a good position that they can obtain thousands and millions of hectares of land below market price. Why don’t you do that? Why do you use the rhetoric that it is because of the white people?

Now, I am very worried that the hon Zuma said that they will expropriate without paying compensation. It seems that the hon members of the ANC in Parliament, at least, differ from him.

I say it again. The owners of the land are the people who worked for it. They paid for it and they do not apologise for that. [Interjections.]

The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr C T Frolick): Order, hon members! Order! [Interjections.]

Mr M G P LEKOTA: House Chairperson, my dear friends and colleagues, I think it’s important that we must remind each other today in this debate that a lot of research and thought went into the drafting of the constitutional clause that is there.

Let’s remind each other that before 1913, there exist no records of a large scale dispossession of the crude nature that General Hertzog introduced in June 1913. With the arrival of various people in this part of the world that we call South Africa today, some from Europe, others from the Philippines as slaves, others from Malaysia as slaves, others from England, Germany and France as fugitives from religious wars, arrived here between 1652 and 1913. All of those people ... [Interjections.]

No, you need to think! You must think!

In this country, people congregated and joined with each other, and there was no title before they came. Title became part of the process of settlement. In the course of all of that, people of our country mixed and a large number of a population called coloureds emerged. I don’t know who coloured who. Nevertheless, even those people ... [Interjections.]

No, you must think and confront history.

People acquired title all over ... by the way, here in the Cape, under the British and KwaZulu-Natal, under the British, there was what was called qualified franchise. Many of you always think there was always apartheid. Apartheid was introduced in 1948.

Throughout, all of our people were entitled to buy and possess land and that’s how title became the order of the day in South Africa. It was only in 1913, after the National Party had won the elections when General Hertzog introduced the 1913 Land Act and passed a law that said, black South Africans can only be entitled to live on eight point something per cent of the land of South Africa.

That was followed by what Sol Plaatje deals with systematically in native life in South Africa – on how Africans were dispossessed. And that they tried to ameliorate in the Land and Trust Act, 1936, by trying to increase the 8% to 13%. That is why when we were negotiating at the Convention for a Democratic South Africa, Codesa, in fact, over the years; even in prison on Robben Island we studied this question to understand how we could get our country out of the depth of the danger of usual slaughter for no reason.

We concluded that the Land Act, 1913, represented a major point at which we must say, people that owned land and still had titles – some still have and others didn’t have because they had lost them, that those people must forward with those titles and that land must be returned to them.

That is the first point. I want to make that point. This subject is fraught with dangers if we don’t think what we are doing. I thank you House Chair, we need more discussion on this question, and otherwise we are putting our country in danger. [Time exipred.] [Applause.]

Rev K R J MESHOE: House Chair, the ACDP recognises that South Africa has a unique history of dispossession of land from black people by colonialists, and that because government’s current land reform programme has been fraught with difficulties since its inception, land reform has been far too slow.

However, we disagree with the sentiment that at the centre of the present crisis regarding the resolution of the land question is the property clause in section 25(1) of the Constitution, which protects private property rights.

The property clause was debated at great length and the drafters of our Constitution then concluded that it had to be included in the Constitution to protect all citizens against state abuse.

The protections in the Constitution are not there for a select few, but for all in South Africa, who own or aspire to own property. We should not pass legislation because we trust ourselves to do the right thing but we should pass legislation that will ensure that any government to come will be constrained and held accountable to do the right thing.

We are concerned that the land issue is being used as a political football by the EFF to garner support, and the ANC, to detract from more pressing issues, such as widespread corruption and lack of service delivery.

We also need to be mindful of what the Constitutional Court said regarding illegal land invasions. It said, to allow such would be a recipe for anarchy. We would caution therefore, that to consider expropriating land without any form of compensation would similarly be a recipe for anarchy in the country.

The ACDP believes that we need to jointly find solutions to the land issue — partnerships with existing experienced and emerging farmers with the state playing a facilitating role, is one possibility. We are in favour of finding solutions, but believe the amendment of the property rights clause is not that answer.

Recent calls by President Zuma and the Minister of Rural Development and Land Reform, Gugile Nkwinti, that government should start land expropriation without compensation is not helpful in this regard. The disastrous consequences of such actions will be a breakdown of reconciliation and national unity in our country, and all that the late President Mandela, fought and stood for, and would open the floodgates for land invasions and confrontation that will unfortunately lead to injuries, loss of life and property.

The ACDP does not support this draft resolution - we support expropriation where necessary with compensation as stipulated in our Constitution.

The ACDP does not want to see chaotic land invasions in our country as a result of this expropriation that many are talking about. We know that vast tracts of land have been left idle, reflecting a lack of resources, skills and capacity on the part of the new owners of land. Commercial farmers and formal agricultural structures have been destroyed and what used to be profitable land has been rendered unproductive.

That is why we believe, that coming together to rationally resolve this problem of land redistribution would be the best way to go. Thank you.

Mr L M NTSHAYISA: House Chairperson, land has long been a critical and very important issue. The founding fathers and mothers of our constitutional democracy were alive to the prevailing anomalies of land deprivation in South Africa, following the aftermath of the Land Act, 1913, which reserved only 13% of the land to our people.

Franz Fanon has written on the land issue. He stated:

“For a colonized people, the most essential value, because it is the most concrete, is first and foremost the land - the land, which will bring them bread above all, dignity.”

According to President Zuma, only 8 million hectares of arable land have been transferred to black people, out of 82 million hectares of the land in South Africa. It is not very much easy, therefore, to preach transformation, interdependence, social cohesion and reconciliation when the land is controlled by a fringe minority.

The former Deputy Chief Justice, Dikgang Moseneke, stated and I quote:

“In 20 years our Court has not resolved even one case of land expropriation under the property clause by government for a public purpose. Similarly, at the same time the courts have never been called upon to give meaning to the property clause in the context of land expropriation or to decide on what is a just and equitable compensation.”

The AIC believes that land expropriation can still be achieved through the Constitution. We should take leaf from Dikgang Moseneke, the former Deputy Chief Justice.

Land is one of the sources of wealth and it can contribute to the growth of our economy. We, therefore, agree with the fact that this section 25 of the Constitution should be revisited for the purpose of benefiting many and not for the purpose of punishing any person because we realise that land is in the hands of the few, which is not good. Land is a source of wealth and it is said that the people shall share.

Without compensation does not mean that we are punishing anyone or perhaps the people that have the land but we are trying to bring about what is referred to as the radical transformation. It is therefore, through the land that people should benefit. If most of the people are having land, they will be in a position to contribute to our economy.

It is for this reason that we would be in a position to support that this land should be returned to the people. Thank you very much. [Time expired.]

Ms T M MBABAMA: House Chair, fellow South Africans, to the majority of our people the ownership of land is seen as an inherent right that was violated by the apartheid Natives Land Act of 1913. Land Tenure is inextricably linked to an individual’s identity, dignity and a sense of belonging.

Millions of our people do not feel the sense of belonging as land reform post 1994 has been an unmitigated disaster. Land reform was supposed to address dispossession and injustice to create more equitable distribution of land; to reduce poverty and stimulate economic growth and to provide security of tenure; all of which the ANC government has failed to achieve.

Despite the availability of a litany of legislation and grant programmes; land reform has fallen victim to political manipulation by the ruling ANC elites; compounded by its own hubris and its insularity. [Applause.] The ANC government now seeks to use the Constitution as an excuse presenting it as a barrier to effective land reform and thus deflecting the responsibility for their failures.

Fellow South Africans, let us not be hoodwinks into accepting these red herring. Small-scale farmers, labour tenants, farmworkers, communal area residents, women and our youth - the lost generation are the intended beneficiaries who have been most affected by the government’s abysmal failure in the delivery of land reform.

Twenty three years into this democracy, the land tenure rights of the rural poor are still not addressed. Security of tenure, preferably in the form of legal ownership, unlocks access to economic development and real jobs for the lost generation, especially in agriculture. Bill Clinton said:

“Work is about more than making a living, as vital as that is. It’s fundamental to human dignity, to a sense of self-worth, as useful, independent, free people.”

With youth unemployment so high in South Africa; do we not then owe it to this lost generation to unlock the immense potential in successful land reform?

Instead of tampering with an excellent Constitution a DA-led government will enact legislation, secure the property rights of those who live on state land, state-owned land reform projects and former homelands. The DA wants our poor to own their own property. [Applause.]

They will rezone communal land areas as municipalities so that our rural poor get the same service delivery and support as the urban areas.

Will also provide an ongoing package of extension services, financial support networks, technical and managerial assistance as well as invest in supportive infrastructure, as seen in the Western Cape.

We will also remove the vestiges of apartheid and colonial planning and the embedded semi-feudal systems it engendered in the former homelands; nowhere should paternalism obstruct progress! We will ensure that land reform is an opportunity around which South Africans can unite rather than a source of anxiety. Land reform can attract massive investments to those who were marginalised.

Fellow South Africans, section 25 of the Constitution is not a constraint to land reform, but the very backbone of successful land reform. The motion by the EFF to review and amend the property clause is not supported by the DA because we care about property rights for the poor. Thank you. [Applause.]  

IsiXhosa: (15:52:26)

Mnu P J MNGUNI: Sihlalo weNdlu, mandikhahlele kubaPhathiswa abakhoyo, ooSekela baPhathiswa nakumalungu ale Ndlu yoWiso-mthetho. Ohloniphekileyo uMbabama osuka apha uthetha eziphikisa. Uyandiva.


She understands vernacular very well.

IsiXhosa: (15:52:47)

Uthetha eziphikisa kuba kuqala uthi esi siphakamiso sese-ANC aphinde ekugqibeleni athi yeye-EFF. Kuza kufuneka ukuba athethe into ibenye ayeke ukuthetha emva naphambili. [Uwelewele.] Obeme apha, okaMalema, ngexesha ebendulula esi siphakamiso, uthi ...

... those who were involved in the negotiation sold out! You really have to get close to some of the veterans and leader who are still alive; and hear exactly what the consultations were, the balance of forces were and what were the discussions in the movement then. You really have to get it clear. I remember that the burning cry at that time was that you cannot win in the table which you have not won in the battlefield.

All negotiations are subject to the balance of forces in the battlefield not as wishes some 23 years later; they reflect that reality. One of our alliance components sat in Cuba in its Eighth Congress in 1988 – I don’t know if you were there – and in characterising the South African revolution, it was said that conditions were right for mass insurrection, sithathe ilizwe ngezigalo [take the land with guns.]

That was only a moment when Operation Vula was about to be unleashed. In fact, all the infrastructures have been established inside the country and at that point in time, the regime gave in. It was in this or at the Old Assembly that F W de Klerk announced the unbanning of the ANC and all other formations, the release of Nelson Mandela and so forth.

That defines, in the list, the context on which negotiations actually took place. Yes, the Ultra-right was busy bulldozing at World Trade Centre and doing all sort of things, but the ANC led even at that moment. Hence this dispensation in which we are right now.

I want to dedicate my input to the memory of a fallen white compatriot; because in tabling this motion, hon Malema said; “no white person can understand” a visionary, a selfless revolutionary, an armed combatant, and a communist to the end; that is none either than the leader, Comrade Joe Slovo. [Interjections.]

Comrade Joe Slovo throughout the struggle epoch he marked a unique calibre of white intelligentsia and white revolutionaries. He was the Commander in Chief of Umkhonto weSizwe. He played a pivotal role in liberating us into this day. So, yes, among white people we have white patriots. In fact, in 1990-91 at the talks about talks, the white minority regime complained that the ANC delegation may not include Joe Slovo. So, he was public enemy number one in the system. I dedicate this contribution to him.

Once again, a number of parties come here and debate but they miss a fundamental point that the South African colonial question – the South African land question is directly related to the colonial question. In fact, just to teach everyone it would be nice to quote from a judge in a recent judgement on 28 July last year. In this judgement it states that:

“To those who personally experienced forced removal, and those who instead of inheriting the illegitimately wrestled land, inherited the pain of loss of homes and property. The dispossessions are not merely colonial and apartheid era memories they continue to be post apartheid realities which are more so in the case of those who are yet to enjoy the fruits of restitution or equitable redress.”

Thus said Judge Madlanga supported by the entire bench at the Constitutional Court. You should just mark, EFF ‘equitable redress.’ Because clearly you always parade as though you support the judiciary, the judge has spoken, the Constitutional Court has spoken and the date was 28 July last year, when they talked about ‘equitable redress’.

You want to introduce your own thing. May be it is a smoke screen for all the court cases you are appearing in for the crime that you say people must invade land and now you want to make it to be like a political call, it is reactionary to the core.

Chair, we have always said that the character of the South African society must be looked at against its own characterisation through colonialism. We have said here before that racism was a myth just to cover imperialism and capitalism.

We repeat the point and we challenge the reactionary intelligentsia. Simon van der Stel would not pass a pure race test. Simon van der Stel who on the one side was a descendant of an Indian slave – so to speak let’s go to history and dispute that.

So, racism was always a myth right from the onset. Parties must look at themselves – one party has got to look at itself and now and again it has to assure the public that it is not racists.

All the time from among the mist of the rank and file of that party racism always show its ugly head all the time. So, we must uncover racism to the racist who are flying with a smoke screen that in fact, underlying, it is a class and even the gender question. [Interjections.] Exactly, land takes place in South Africa in a racialised context. There can be nothing better than that.

We also want to refer to gender and male domination society and chauvinism which led to the triple operation of the African working women.

In fact, we hold - because everyone who talks gender we think that we are talking about the same thing - ours is a notion of revolutionary feminism and not liberal feminism ... [Interjections.]

In fact, race, class and gender must be looked at in balance otherwise we risk landing into workerism, we risk landing into narrow-nationalism; we risk landing into liberalism, we risk landing into feminism, and all sorts of distortions.

The 1994 breakthrough is not what you want; it is what we want because you have a farfetched motion that will never see the light of day. That breakthrough sought to tilt and reverse the colonial ethos of 1652, the Union of South Africa of 1910; the Land Act of 1913 and the Group Areas Act of 1948.

No one alludes to the Group Areas Act, and thank you to hon Shaik, because he is right, he is referring even to the current existing dispossession taking place in Woodstock and elsewhere. [Interjections.]

IsiXhosa: (16:00:46)

Yimani siza nani kakuhle ngomgca ngoku.


For some reasons – listen carefully to this – why the EFF’s motion does not resonate and may not resonate with the ANC; you refer to the 8% of the land – now the 8% that you refer to as having been transferred thus far. You do not indicate whether you are referring to redistribution or to tenure reform or to restitution, but you are just howling and shooting into a hill! Be clear as to what 8% you are talking to. On restitution, how would EFF account for those people who have opted for financial compensation? How would you count them into the 8%?

Now, the various redistributive programme like the Recapitalization and Development Programme, RADP, the Proactive Land Acquisition Strategy, PLUS, and so on, which are programmes in the redistribution of land; do you include them in the 8% or you don’t?

Parliament has a clear mechanism as has been outlined by committee Chair, Comrade Ngwenya-Mabila, clear mechanism of a Constitution Review Committee. You abruptly jumped and asked to give ANC 6%, is the ANC needing your 6% so desperately? What for?

When there is Parliamentary constitution review committee why your amendments can’t be looked at there? In fact, I can paraphrase for you what you want. That 25(1) of the Constitution says:

“No one may be deprived of property except in terms of law of general application, and no law may permit arbitrary deprivation of property.”

All you want is that everyone must be deprived only through that law. That law is forthcoming in actual fact. We reject the EFF in its call for land invasion. The ANC rejects the EFF’s motion. [Applause.] Thank you.   

Mr M A PLOUAMMA: Hon Chair, hon members, cowardice can be an illness; you must heal it before it becomes chronic. The ruling elite of today will not support this motion because they are cowards who are seduced by big houses and big cars. They chair at the table of those who benefitted from apartheid and colonialism.

Chief Sekhukhune, legendary Bhambatha and King of the Xhosa and warriors are smiling wherever they are. Their descendants now smell the coffee. Almost all wars fought in South Africa were all about the land and mineral resources.

The imperial British still benefit through international co-operation. The Anglo-Boer War was all about independent and land annexation. The negotiations that led to the union of South Africa paved the way which the Afrikaners benefited culminating to them reaching political power in 1948.

When D F Malan and his predecessors gave monopoly of land to Afrikaners, they never thought once about black people. We were treated like children worse than animals. Now, fast-forward, we came to 1994, our leaders for the sake of peace settled for scrums on the table.

They were absorbed and assimilated to the civilisation of Western Europe. In a nutshell, they were anglicised and quickly forgot the blood and murder of kings who stood the ground, how Chief Sekhukhune wrote the letter to the then Transvaal under the president Burger and British representative to stop their aggression. They never listened because land is everything, if you take it from the people they are left naked, homeless and disorientated.

Our Constitution obliged us under section 25 to treat fairly even those who inherited land from Paul Kruger, D F Malan and Verwoerd’s ideology. It compels us to choose not to go the Robert Mugabe road but to be fair and just in our approach.

However, the reason why Agang SA supports this motion it is because in 23 years since we have been having this democracy, black people are suffering even worse than during the time of apartheid. [Interjections.]

I want to warn seriously those who think things are normal when black people are still dispossessed to go to the nearest river to baptise themselves. There is nothing normal; we do not have our country; our country is still in the hands of the descendants of those who came from Netherland and above all those who came from Britain.

This country cannot be stable and cannot have a true democracy until black people, Africa, in particular, are able  ...  We support this motion. [Time expired.] [Applause.]

Mr L R MBINDA: Hon Chair, Baba uNkwinti, I am very disappointed with your comrades, more especially the lady who is chairing our committee in Land Reforms. I don’t know what Tata - ngubani lo mfo [who is this man] - Mnguni was saying here.


Ebesenza le nto kuthiwa kubhanka.


He was not even addressing this important issue of land question. So, I think you must just fire both of them. [Interjections.] I don’t think they are representing the marginalised people of this country.

Our current Constitution does not address the land issue in favour of the indigenous people - the African people. I think what we should have done in the Constitution when everybody was rushing for negotiation - because Tata Makwethu was very clear all the time, more especially about the land issue.

My proposal is that we must firstly change the preamble of the Constitution as follows: We, people of South Africa, declare that our land and its mineral resources were stolen or robbed from the indigenous people by the white monopoly capital; it must therefore be returned to its rightful owners - the indigenous Africans. That is what we should have been doing. This issue would not have been a problem.

As the PAC, we are appealing to all members of the House from various political organisations at least to support the repeal of section 25 of our Constitution. We all know that our African people do not have money to pay for the stolen land because our wealth is still within the hands of the white monopoly capital.

All the social ills that our people are suffering for are as a result of us being landless. With the land in our control, we will be able to change the lives of our people for the better for ever.

So, I must say I am disappointed because we all know that this land that we are talking about, the ocean as well as oxygen is a gift that was given to the citizen, the indigenous people of this country by God. That is why we are saying as PAC, land cannot be sold; land cannot be bought; and it should not be treated as a commodity; it must just be taken from those who have stolen it from the African people.


Ndiyabhena ndicela kananjalo ukuba iphele le ngxaki sinayo yokuba sithi xa singcwaba izihlobob zethu kufuneka sihlawule ama-R3000 kuMasipala OMbaxa iBaffalo City. Ukanti xa umntu efuna ukungcwaba eCambridge kumhlaba ophucukileyo, apho kuhlala khona abantu abamhlophe, kufuneka ahlawule ama-R9000. Lihlazo elo kungenjalo ama-Afrika aza kuzithathela wona lo umhlaba ukuba niyalibazisa kuba aba babini ...


 ... they are busy contradicting their own provinces. [Time expired.] [Applause.]


Musani ukudlalisa ngathi apha.

Mr N T GODI: Hon House Chair, comrades and hon members, the APC will support any measure, resolution or programme that seek to enhance and fast-rack access to land by the dispossessed African majority.

The message must be sent strongly and consistently that whites cannot continue to own land in excess to their population figures. The fact that white people, as a social class, talk about reconciliation whilst tenaciously clinging to wealth and land accumulated through the criminal oppression and exploitation of the majority indigenous Africans, means the majority is being taken for a ride.

The fight against racism, poverty, inequality and the restoration of the dignity and humanity of the Africans, find their concrete resolution in restoring land to our people.

Our people continue to live like refugees in their own country; treated as sub-humans in the farms, evicted, the graves of their forefathers desecrated, etc.

The APC supports this motion, for no more a reason than that the issue of land must be at the centre of our transformation programmes and freedom. The land question is a genuine call. The APC supports it. All Africans and freedom-loving people of South Africa must unite to ensure that the national grievance is addressed. I thank you. [Applause.]

 Mr T C R WALTERS: Hon Chair, I am at the moment surprised, I think historical event took place and that is member Godi disagreeing with the ANC.

The DA welcomes this opportunity like, the hon Lekota, to kick off a genuine debate as to the causes, problems and solutions of land reform. Most of you today are actually celebrating and welcoming this opportunity to display our pride in a Constitution that rather than prevents us from achieving justice and redress land reforms is in fact our most powerful tool to do exactly that.

While we do not associate with the implied solution in this motion Constitutional change to the challenges of land reform, we do agree that a genuine foundational debate about this matter has long been overdue, in this House, amongst us as politicians and also in society at large.

The absence of meaningful debates since 1994 provided this ANC-led government with a choice no government should ever have had.

On the other hand it could choose to use clause 25 of our Constitution that specifically provides the framework for the rapid expansion of property ownership for those excluded from it in the past, and in the process unlock suppressed talents and abilities of black South African, particularly the lost generation of South Africans left behind.

It could have made that choice. It could choose to make South Africa an economic success story where economic growth is matched with a reduction of inequality through the use of property ownership and a stake in that economic growth.

Yet, there was another choice. It was a choice that gave organisational elite imbedded in the liberation movement, the opportunity to insulate it from ideas and initiatives, close itself to accountability and create a crony system of government where delivery is not about the people, but self-enrichment.

It was an alternative choice to use its power to attract the highest bidder, to use every tender, very land deal and every development to build the foundations of probably the greatest criminal enterprise in the world today.

Fellow South Africans, the ANC made that choice. Now, as its domination is rapidly waning and the shock of loss of power is being felt, the government party is doing account for replacing the people with personal profit.

Out of ideas for the people, it has only one card to hold on to its privileges, and that is to set up lightening conductors to draw energy away from their historic failure. Unfortunately, this motion is helping to set up such a lightening conductor.

It is not clause 25 that reduces the supposed beneficiary of Land Reform projects to unpaid workers without property rights on taxpayer’s subsidised state farms. Farms that are milked dry by cronies of the ANC.

It is in fact our Constitution that will protect their right to ownership of such land once a government dedicated to fairness provides it to them. It is not clause 25 that leaves the rural poor in former homelands, without title deed on the land they have farmed for generations. Rural poor deliberately kept in poverty to lock them into voting for the ANC.

It is in fact our Constitution that will protect the right to ownership of such land once the government believe in freedom provides it to them. It is not clause 25 that prevented the purchase of land, readily available on the market as any survey will show, at reasonable prices.

It would have assisted a transforming agricultural sector’s stability concurrently providing much needed jobs in a sector currently shedding jobs. It is in fact our Constitution that will protect transformation in a flourishing agricultural sector once a caring government believing in opportunity makes land reform successful.

It is not clause 25 that allowed extension services, the Agricultural Research Council, suitable financing for farmers, investment opportunities, drought, relief, agricultural colleges, land claims and purchases of land to fail.

It is not clause 25 that fails to take workable proposals from organises agriculture, Communal Property Association and land reform beneficiaries on board. It is not clause 25 that is to blame for state capture, division in the ANC and failure at the ballot box.

Fellow South Africans the Constitution is the very institution that guarantees the economic freedom of those marginalised and dispossessed that is now being blamed for a lack of progress. For us do so, as politicians, is like a craftsman blaming his tools. By blaming the Constitution ...


... en ek kan byvoeg ons legitieme beleggers in landbou, ons boere ... [... and, may I add, our legimate investors in agriculture, our farmers ...]


... for the failures of this government, we are not only playing by the rules of survival of an emerging, gangsters state, but also risking the future of every single South African who came into property for the first time. The DA is the only party that genuinely wants the poor to own property; [Interjections.] We do not want the poor to remain poor.

The DA shows that transversal government, incorporating all levels of government that bring all stakeholders together can successfully empower the poor through ...  The DA stands with the Constitution. [Applause.] [Time expired.]

The DEPUTY MINISTER OF PUBLIC WORKS: House Chair, colleagues and comrades. Let’s begin by agreeing with some of what is contained in the introductory paragraphs of the draft resolution which is being submitted by the hon Shivambu in the name of the EFF. It is absolutely true that South Africans have a history of brutal dispossession of land by colonial and white minority regimes.

The draft resolution says “a unique history”; I would suggest that we remove the word unique. Let’s be internationalists; because after all genocidial, colonial projects have occurred throughout North and South America, Australasia, Africa, and as we speak today, in Palestine, so, let’s be internationalists and not narrowly be exclusivists about being South African.

It is true, as the draft resolution says that this colonial and apartheid past has left a deep mark, although it says an indelible mark; no, no, this mark must be delible, it must be erasable, we need to erase it radically through radical economic transformation.

It’s also true, as other speakers have said from the ANC, that the current land reform programme has been fought with difficulties and the pace has been frustratingly slow.

Where the draft resolution, hon Shivambu, starts to go off the rails, is in its fifth paragraph where it tells us that “at the centre of the present crisis regarding the land question is section 25(1) of the Constitution.” I’m not sure, hon Shivambu, why you singled out clause 1 of section 25, which reads “no one may be deprived of property except in terms of law of general application and no law may permit arbitrary depravation of property.”

The reason why this is the very first clause inserted by those of us who were involved in the negotiations at Convention for a Democratic South Africa, CODESA, in section 25 of the property clause is precisely because of the brutal colonial and apartheid era arbitrary depravation of land, property and livelihoods; never again shall we allow arbitrary depravation in this country, it must never be allowed again. [Applause.]

However, what clause 25 of the Constitution is not saying is that existing property relations are sacrosanct and must be left untouched, on the contrary.

Firstly, section 25 calls for security of tenure of ownership in cases where the apartheid past has left millions of South Africans with insecure tenure or no tenure. Women in areas of land tenure, for instance, with insecure property rights, that’s very important.

Secondly, section 25 empowers expropriation in the public interest and it defines public interest as including the nation’s commitment to land reform and to reforms to bring about equitable access to all, all, South Africa’s natural resources: water, minerals, etc, and it adds, property is not just limited to the land, unlike what the DA has tried to change the Constitution into meaning.

Under sub-clause 5 of the property clause, the Constitution says the state must - not may, should consider, should think about – the must take reasonable legislative and other measures to foster conditions which enable citizens to gain access to land on an equitable basis.

And under sub-clause 8 of the property clause, the Constitution declares: no provision of this section may impede the state from taking legislative and other measures to achieve land, water and related reform in order to redress the results of past racial discrimination.

In short, it is absolutely misguided to treat the property clause in the Constitution as an albatross around our necks. As a best and necessary concession that was made in a difficult balance of forces during the negotiated settlement in the 1990s.

I agree, therefore, with former Deputy Chief Justice Dikgang Moseneke, that clause 25 is in fact radical in both spirit and in its letter. And I further concur with the Judge that it is misguided to blame clause 25 for the weaknesses in land reform.

As Judge Moseneke has said, government has so far failed to test the radical transformational reach of the idea of compensation for expropriation being based on the just and equitable principle; not based primarily or exclusively on the basis of market value.

Let’s remind ourselves, section 25 says explicitly that the determination of just and equitable must reflect an equitable balance between the public interest and those affected by expropriation, having regard to all relevant circumstances including the current use of the property, is he an absentee landlord, that should certainly affect how we appropriate; if we expropriate, how we reflect on compensation.

The history of the acquisition and use of the property. As a result of group areas removals, that should surely impact upon whatever compensation is made; the market value, yes it’s there but it’s not prime among equals and the extent of direct state investment etc.

Where expropriation of poor communities occurs, perhaps to build a dam, the just and equitable principle which surely suggests compensation far in excess of market value; contrary wise, there will be cases where the history of acquisition of the property, for instance, or its current use, will require compensation considerably below market value.

Indeed, there’s no reason why compensation might be just symbolic to rand in order to meet the requirements and let the courts decide if that is just, fair and equitable.

The EFF radically misreads the Constitution and thus falls into the trap that is historically been laid by the DA and its hangers-on. Now, I’m very pleased to see that there’s a recalibration of the DA’s stance because I think they are realising there opposition to the Expropriation Bill in this House has created the conditions for opportunism.

There have been enough dispossessions in our country, let’s not allow the DA and its hangers-on to dispossess us of the spirit and literal meaning of the hard-won 1996 Constitution.

I’ve heard the DA leader, not currently and I’m pleased to hear the hon Lotriet and others being more sensible; but a DA leader, Leader of the Opposition in this House, not so long ago stood up and said – not the current one – the willing seller willing buyer approach is entrenched in the Constitution, utter poppycock.

Premier Helen Zille said that the DA’s strategy was to split the ANC into the constitutionalists, who believe in the rule of law, and the radicals, who support national democratic revolution. We are radicals, we support national democratic revolution and we are constitutionalists and we believe in the rule of law. [Applause.] The Constitution is not a 19th century liberal document.

In introducing this draft resolution, the hon Shivambu is making an innocent but I would like to believe misguided assumption. Let’s pretend for a moment, let’s assume that we amend the Constitution to allow expropriation without compensation, who is it that will then drive land expropriation without compensation?

Perhaps the EFF will be the ruling party, let’s pretend that might happen; and perhaps a Thomas Sankara or Che Guevara will emerge from their ranks; an honourable politician, perhaps that might happen; perhaps they will be ruling in coalition with other partners and perhaps those coalition partners will support the Thomas Sankara of the future in the EFF to lead the process of land reform without compensation.

But we need ... there’s many perhaps’ and many ifs and buts in that, we need to make laws and we need to defend the Constitution not based on perhaps or if, but what will work for all seasons.

What if instead of a Thomas Sankara, we get a parasitic emerging elite linked to a future government pursuing private accumulation?

Imagine how in the name of public interest piles of expropriation without restraint and compensation will be exploited? And we know exactly what will happen, because we just need to look across the Limpopo to see who are the main victims when this happens the same black majority who have been oppressed in the past: farm workers, the urban and rural poor, with chronic food shortages and skyrocketing food prices as a small connected elite seize land in the name of the public interest. So, be careful what you wish for, I say to my colleagues across there on the EFF.

Much of this debate but not all of it because I’m pleased to hear that some of the speakers have also recognised that when we talk about the land question, we are not talking only about rural and farming issues; yes, critically we’re talking about those; nor are we talking about a magical return to pre 1652 or even pre 1913.

What do we mean when we say let’s return the land to the indigenous people? What message are we sending to the millions of South Africans who are descendants of those who came not as white colonialists in this country but came as slaves or indentured labourers?

We must be very careful of having a narrow Africanism; of course the exploitation and brutal expropriation of the African majority and indigenous majority is something very important but let’s broaden the horizon.

Well over 60% of South Africans are now urbanised; the land issue is now predominantly an urban question and nor should we imagine that systematic mass scale dispossession occurred only in the distant colonial and the relatively apartheid past.

As we speak now, massive dispossession of poor black communities is actively happening, driven by the market, property speculators, corrupt court officials and estate agents, and by the crisis of indebtedness of the working poor and lower middle classes. The scale of home repossessions by the banks, some are 100 000 every year, is approaching apartheid era group area removal proportions.

As we speak now, as one former speaker mentioned, “down the road in Woodstock or up in the Bo-Kaap, communities are being disposed in the name of development” by speculative property market activities aided and bettered by the city officials and city politicians. [Applause.]

On the Cape Flats, in Phillipi, small farmers have temporarily won a reprieve from being dispossessed so that a shopping mall and a privately-run prison can be developed, driven by the Mayor of City of Cape Town, regardless of the environmental considerations and regardless of sustainable livelihoods for [inaudible.]; so much for defending property rights of the poor, DA.

The democratic state needs expropriating powers, it needs to be able to drive rural and land reform, mixed income, medium density, human settlements, all of this is captured admirably in the Constitution and especially within section 25. [Time expired.]

We don’t need to change the Constitution, we need to implement it. [Applause.]

Mr J S MALEMA: Chair, the EFF has succeeded in exposing the hypocrisy of the ANC to the South African population ... [Interjections.] ... but you are not honourable enough to stick to your own ways.

Your president spoke about expropriation; you came here and contradicted him. Some of your colleagues spoke about expropriation; you came here and contradicted them. When the last speaker spoke here, one of the Ministers was actually encouraging me to listen.

Because that’s what you do. You listen to white messiahs. Because on your own you can’t do ... [Interjections.] On your own you can’t think ... [Interjections.] ... and it is the white messiahs who have put us in this crisis. The same Joe Slovo that you praise is the one that came with sunset clauses that demanded huge compromises. The African majority are suffering today because he was defending white property ownership.

So we want to put it very clearly that we made available to the ANC to implement exactly what the President said he wants to do, and the ANC rejected it. [Interjections.]

Because you never mean anything you say. You stand up and say you fight corruption, yet you bring corruption right into Parliament in the name of Brian Molefe. [Interjections.] Those are the things you are known for. You say this and do the opposite.

Today, the entire country has seen you for who you are. You bring people here who have no clarity of what we are speaking about, except the last speaker who attempted but just stuck to re-reading the Constitution!

Hon Mnguni comes here and speaks about feminism when we are speaking about land. He says revolutionary feminism, liberal feminism ... Hey! What is he talking about? And then he says, Malema you must sit with the veterans of the struggle. I might appear young to you, but, for your information, I’ve sat with a lot of struggle veterans. I even stayed in their houses, more than you.

Because, by just speaking here, it is clear that you are just a backbencher from a branch who found himself in this House by accident. [Interjections.] You don’t understand national issues. You must return to your branch so that you can continue counting membership forms. Issues here are beyond you capacity. You must still go through the structures so that you develop national consciousness, so that tomorrow, when you come here, you can reflect the national status of issues and not some short-sighted talking about things that you don’t have clarity on.

So, as the EFF, we want to say that radical economic transformation is just rhetoric. You are not going to implement it.

The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr C T Frolick): Hon member, your time has expired.

Mr J S MALEMA: You don’t mean it. Zuma says it because he wants to re-position himself so that he can have some legacy.

The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr C T Frolick): Hon member, your time has expired.

Mr J S MALEMA: He will be known as the most useless President who has never meant anything ...

The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr C T Frolick): Hon Malema, your time has expired! Will you take your seat now, please.

Mr J S MALEMA: ... that came out of his mouth. He just blows hot about radical economic transformation. [Applause.]

The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr C T Frolick): Order, hon members! Order!

Debate concluded.

Question put: That the motion moved by Mr N F Shivambu be agreed to.

Division demanded.

The House divided.


Question not agreed to.

Motion accordingly negatived.



Source: Unrevised transcript, Hansard.