Land hearings taking a toll on MPs

Committee co-chair Vincent Smiths says they underestimated the interest from South Africans on the issue of expropriation of land without compensation.

Co-chairperson of the constitutional review committee Vincent Smith during a media briefing in Kempton Park, Johannesburg 24 June 2018. The committee is tasked with reviewing Section 25 of the Constitution for the expropriation of land without compensation. Picture: Sethembiso Zulu/EWN.

CAPE TOWN – Parliament's land hearings are taking a toll on Members of Parliament (MPs) who have been working on the road non-stop for more than 10 days.

The chairperson of Parliament's joint constitutional review committee Vincent Smith says MPs are understandably tired after crisscrossing the country for the hearings.

The committee is busy conducting public hearings into the desirability of amending Section 25 of the Constitution to allow expropriation of land without compensation.

Smiths says they underestimated the interest from South Africans on the issue of expropriation of land without compensation.

He says the committee had planned to deal with about 300 people per venue but is having to work with more than 800 people.

“I think people are tired. But fortunately, this is good for us before we go to Rustenburg and other places in the Eastern Cape. Hopefully, this will allow us to recharge.”

Smith says the committee is thus far satisfied with the contributions made during the hearings, as it prepares to move to the Free State and North West provinces.