19 April 2019

South Africa: Agri SA Submits Minority Report After Refusing to Sign Advisory Panel Document

A minority report which Agri SA said contains workable proposals on the financing of land reform and focuses on land reform in rural areas, fast-tracking land reform as well as farmer settlement has been submitted to the chairperson of the Presidential Expert Advisory Panel on Land Reform and Agriculture after the industry association president refused to sign the official document.

Agri SA President, Dan Kriek said in a statement on Friday that he and at least one other member refused to sign the panel's report owing to - among others - issues it had relating to expropriation without compensation.

"We have released an alternative report setting out perspectives on land reform based on proven agricultural practice and sustainable economic growth," he said.

The alternative report states which proposals and recommendations in the panel's report, are supported and which are rejected.

'Important gaps'

According to Agri SA, it also tried to clarify "important gaps" in the panel report and on the proposals that were not included that warrant consideration, five of which were submitted to the panel but were "only dealt with superficially".

"The President should be able to weigh up alternatives and decide what South Africa needs. The minority report is progressive in nature and focus on practical agricultural common-sense plans," he said.

"The minority report contains viable solutions to build our nation as one, sovereign, democratic state, founded on the values of human dignity, equality and freedom."

The panel was tasked with reviewing current legal, policy and institutional approaches to land reform, and advising the Presidency on a way forward.

In February, panel chairperson Dr Vuyo Mahlati said the panel had over five months engaged on a number of initiatives to ensure that stakeholders across the country were consulted, while also conducting research and organising roundtables that focused on specific topics, including rural and urban tenure models, climate change, women's land rights, land administration and financial services.

Kriek said he had informed Ramaphosa's office on Monday of the intention to submit and reasons for the minority report, which has been sent to the chairperson of the advisory panel.

Source: News24

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