The Land Claims Court must be strengthened to deal with restitution claims and other land matters, according to recommendations from the Presidential Advisory Panel on land reform and agriculture. Courtesy #DStv403
JOHANNESBURG - The Land Claims Court must be strengthened to deal with restitution claims and other land matters.
At least this is one of the recommendations of the Presidential Advisory Panel on Land Reform and Agriculture.
The panel released its much-anticipated report in Pretoria on Sunday in the presence of Land Reform and Agriculture Minister Thoko Didiza.
“Land reform can enable social cohesion, deliver social justice and restore dignity to the majority people of our country,” said Chairperson Vuyokazi Mahlati.
The land question has been one of the nation's most emotive issues.
In one of the guidelines by the panel, it recommends the establishment of a land-reform fund and public and private sector contributions to support land acquisition.
It also recommends commercial financial support post-settlement.
“Our hope is that this will get buy-in, through consultation, financial support from the state and restructuring the land bank and calls on donors to participate," said Mahlati.
The panel said it was, however, concerned about corruption.
“We urge government to take steps to improve oversight and improve prosecution, the department must tighten up the beneficiary selection process,” she said.
On the question of expropriation of land without compensation, the panel said the circumstances must be clear.
It’s up to the government now to ensure that the recommendations are taken into account in the land reform process.
The panel was appointed by President Cyril Ramaphosa to produce the 144-page report.