Ekurhuleni Mayor Mzwandile Masina has urged Acting President Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma to “quietly and urgently deliver land expropriation without compensation.”
President Cyril Ramaphosa has named Dlamini-Zuma, who is Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs Minister, as Acting President from Tuesday until Friday.
He is attending the 11th BRICS Summit in Brazil during this period. Deputy President David Mabuza is also out of the country on official duty.
Writing on Twitter on Tuesday, Masina said he wanted to see if the policy would affect South Africa’s food security.
He wrote, “@DlaminiZuma can you quietly and urgently deliver land expropriation without compensation. I want to see what will happen in the country’s food security whilst you Acting as State President!”
While Masina’s tweet may be tongue-in-cheek, some may perceive it to mean that he doesn’t believe the policy will be implemented under Ramaphosa’s leadership.
Dlamini-Zuma was Ramaphosa’s main opponent at the African National Congress (ANC) leadership contest in 2017.
She was associated with the “radical economic transformation” (RET) grouping in the ANC, which successfully pushed for the 2017 conference to adopt land expropriation without compensation as a policy.
Masina controversially declared in the run-up to that conference that he would resign as Ekurhuleni Mayor if Ramaphosa won. He later denied ever saying that and refused to resign.
Masina’s followers react
Some of Masina’s Twitter followers, like Molebatsi Masedi, joked that the tweet could land him in trouble and urged him to delete it.
@Super_Lefa45 added, “You must be finally happy to serve under another Zuma. Resign when @CyrilRamaphosa comes back.”
However, others like Thami Tom agreed with him, “@DlaminiZuma lead us to what we supported you on RET left-wing ideologies of the ANC against prepaid people that take mandate elsewhere including WMC [white monopoly capital].”
Parliament is currently seized with the process towards amending section 25 of the Constitution to clarify the conditions under which land expropriation without compensation would be permitted.
A parliamentary ad hoc committee on the matter has set itself a target of March 2020 to finalise the process.