The DA has sounded the alarm about state custodianship of land after the ANC apparently moved to appease the EFF in its quest to amend the constitution to allow expropriation of land without compensation.
In a statement on Sunday (20 June), DA MP Annelie Lotriet said the ANC had tabled a new proposal, which includes state custodianship of land, to Parliament’s section 25 ad hoc committee.
State custodianship applicable to ‘certain land’
Business Day also reported on Monday that the ANC had proposed that state custodianship be applicable to “certain land” within the context of expropriation.
The governing party wants to the amend section 25 of the constitution to make it more explicit on which land could be expropriated without compensation.
The EFF supports an amendment, but has insisted on the more radical policy of full state custodianship of land, something President Cyril Ramaphosa rejected earlier this month because it “amounts to nationalisation.”
If the two parties reach an agreement, they have sufficient numbers to pass the amendment in Parliament which requires a two-thirds majority.
ANC ‘pandering to EFF’
“In its blind rush to ensure the passing of the amendment at all costs, the ANC has thrown out all reason and is now openly pandering to the EFF,” Lotriet said.
“State custodianship is nothing but just another byword for nationalisation of land under the administrative control of the ANC, a party that has proved itself time and again that it destroys everything that it purports to administer.”
Lotriet claimed that state custodianship of land “ruins agricultural productivity and keeps people trapped in poverty,” citing the example of Mozambique where the state has owned land since the country’s independence in 1975.
She said it is “another ANC lie” that state custodianship will benefit emerging farmers, because such farmers would be “permanent tenants of the state” and would struggle to access finance and make profits.
“Every bit of evidence demonstrates that state custodianship does not work yet the ANC is barrelling on, following a ruinous ideology rather than evidence,” Lotriet argued.
“The DA remains resolute in our rejection of the ongoing attempt to nationalise land by stealth and reduce South Africa to an economic wasteland.”