Thoko Didiza's inaction failing farmers – Noko Masipa

DA MP says irrational ban on livestock auctions is leading to a crisis in the agriculture industry

Minister Didiza inaction regarding irrational ban on auctions once again fails farmers

10 July 2021

The Minister of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development, Thoko Didiza, has failed to give any feedback to an urgent letter from the DA this week regarding the irrational ban on livestock auctions.

The DA requested that Minister Didiza urgently petition the Minister of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (CoGTA), Dr Dlamini-Zuma, to allow for the ban on livestock auctions to be lifted as a matter of urgency.

The Minister’s lack of response to the unfolding crisis in the agriculture industry due to this irrational regulation shows the ANC government’s lack of concern for farmers, especially communal and small holdings farmers who are the worst hit by this ban.

How can agriculture be deemed an essential service during the first iteration of the Level 4 lockdown, but now suddenly they are not?

The DA has repeatedly pointed out that none of the livestock auctions that took place during last year’s Level 4 lockdown turned into super spreader events due to the stringent Covid-19 health and safety protocols that were followed at these hybrid events. There is simply no reason why auctions should be banned during this Level 4 lockdown.

The ANC has proven that they do not care about the agriculture community. Minister Didiza’s silence on the matter speaks volumes.

Issued by Noko Masipa, DA Member on the Portfolio Committee on Agriculture, Land Reform & Rural Development, 10 July 2021