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Dept hands over R50m in cash & title deeds

The claimants successfully lodged land claims with the department during the claim period that ended in 1998.

Land Reform Minister Gugile Nkwinti. Picture: ruraldevelopment.gov.za

JOHANNESBURG - The Department of Rural Development and Land Reform has handed over R50 million in cash and title deeds in Tshwane to families and communities who were dispossessed of their land during the apartheid era.

The claimants successfully lodged land claims with the department during the claim period that ended in 1998.

Two families and some local communities were awarded financial compensation worth R32 million instead of title deeds.

Chief land claims commissioner Nomfundo Ntloko says the hand-over was a celebration.

"We gave out about 30 title deeds and had 20 individual title deeds then we handed over a cheque for R32 million."

President Jacob Zuma said on Thursday he believes the 1913 cut-off date for land claims should be pushed back.

Zuma addressed the National House of Traditional Leaders' annual sitting in Parliament.

He told the gathering that while the majority of the country's people were formally dispossessed by the 1913 Land Act, greater losses were suffered during the 1800s.

"I believe as a son of a black man, being black, that we need to shift that cut-off date. But you need to find a reasonable way of addressing the issue within the Constitution."

He said lack of access to land is the basis for the poverty, unemployment and inequality endured by mostly black people today.

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