Govt's land reform failures now a cheap politicking tool, says expert

Professor Hall says many questions around land reform remain unanswered including who the land is for and who actually wants land.

Residents of Zwelihle near Hermanus protest on Monday 26 March 2018. Picture: Twitter/@HermanusOnline

CAPE TOWN – A land reform expert says that the process to enable the expropriation of land without compensation must be transparent.

Professor Ruth Hall spoke to Eyewitness News after a land reform seminar at the University of the Western Cape this week.

Hall says that many questions around land reform remain unanswered, including who the land is for and who actually wants land.

In recent weeks, the Western Cape has seen a spike in land grabs that have led to violent protests in Hermanus and Dunoon.

Earlier this year, Parliament adopted a resolution to set up a committee to look at changing the Constitution to allow for the expropriation of land without compensation.

Hall says that government's land reform failures have now opened the window for political parties to use it as a campaign strategy.

“It’s the failure for more than two decades of the state to tackle this issue seriously. So, the longer it’s been neglected, the more it’s going to be harder to manage and will be used as a tool for cheap politics.”

The Constitutional Review Committee has been given until the end of August to hold public consultations.