NCOP passes Traditional and Khoisan Leadership Bill

The bill was backed by all provinces except for the Democratic Alliance-led Western Cape.

Khoisan leaders watching proceedings in Parliament's Old Assembly Chamber on 10 January 2019, where the NCOP has passed the Traditional and Khoi-San Leadership Bill. Picture: Gaye Davis/EWN

CAPE TOWN - The Traditional and Khoisan Leadership Bill has been passed by the National Council of Provinces (NCOP).

The bill was backed by all provinces except for the Democratic Alliance-led Western Cape.

NCOP chairperson Thandi Modise oversaw the vote: “One province is not in agreement. Therefore, the Bill has been assented to in terms of Section 75 of the Constitution because the majority of provinces have agreed.”

The Western Cape opposed the bill on the grounds that it used different criteria when it came to Khoisan people than with other traditional leaders and was therefore discriminatory.

DA MP Cathy Labuschagne also criticised the public participation process, saying it was flawed.

The bill is controversial, with critics concerned about the amount of power it will give traditional leaders to enter into deals with mining and other companies, without proper consultation or consent of affected communities.

(Edited by Zamangwane Shange)