Land Ownership Under the Spotlight

Department of Rural Development and Land Reform

The rural development and land reform department will contribute towards the current debate on expropriation of land without compensation “including providing our position on the Constitutional modalities and policy implications.”

The rural development and land reform minister, Maite Nkoana-Mashabane, confirmed this during her department’s budget vote speech in parliament.

The minister added that as part of government’s strategy on radical socio-economic transformation, “we are determined to ensure that land ownership becomes an economic asset for our people.”

In addition to the parliamentary process on the Joint Constitutional Review Committee, the department “will continue to advance land reform through existing programmes of land restitution, land redistribution and land tenure reform using the existing constitutional provisions to argue for limited compensation including in cases such as the return of land to labour tenants and farm dwellers.”

The minister also announced that the Draft Regulation of Agricultural Land Bill will be tabled in parliament in 2018.

The proposed legislation was published for comment in 2017.

It is designed to set up the Land Commission and introduce land ownership ceilings on agricultural land.

The minister also declared that the capacity of the Commission on the Restitution of Land Rights will be strengthened and the next phase of the audit of private land will focus on “disaggregating information as regards ownership of land by companies, trusts, CBOs, etc.”

Sabinet Cape Town Office