South Africa: The Land Bill Is a Curate's Egg and, Right Now, It's a Bit Scrambled


Have your say: The Draft Constitution Eighteenth Amendment Bill has been published by the Ad Hoc Committee to Initiate and Introduce Legislation Amending Section 25 of the Constitution to allow for land expropriation without compensation. The committee has called for comments on the bill by the end of January 2020.

Since expropriation without compensation (EWC), regained prominence in government rhetoric, there has been much public concern over the potential implications of nil compensation. There are many calls for concerned citizens to submit their comments to oppose the bill and save South Africa from a Zimbabwe-esque future. Esteemed economist and entrepreneur, Dr Lawrence McCrystal, has already submitted his eight reasons for opposing the amendment. But I propose that we shouldn't be too hasty to oppose this bill, because it might actually open the door to the very thing we need.

First, let's look at what the bill entails:

1. The aim of the bill is to allow for land and any improvements thereon to be expropriated for purposes of land reform with nil compensation payable. Some responses to the bill have cautioned that it will allow the government to seize your car, bank account...

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