Land expropriation without compensation more like land confiscation, MPs told

The ad hoc committee looking into amending Section 25 of the Constitution to allow for land expropriation without compensation held further public hearings on Tuesday as it prepared to finalise the amendment bill.

FILE: A screengrab of MPs resuming public hearings on whether to amend the Constitution to allow for land expropriation without compensation.

CAPE TOWN - Land expropriation without compensation was more like 'land confiscation' and asset forfeiture.

This was one of the submissions made to Parliament by organisations representing businesses in another round of public hearings on Tuesday.

The organisations said that there was no justification for a constitutional amendment, with some saying that the courts should play a role in determining compensation.

The ad hoc committee looking into amending Section 25 of the Constitution to allow for land expropriation without compensation held further public hearings today as it prepared to finalise the amendment bill.

Most of the submissions made today were opposed to the constitutional amendment.

Piet le Roux, who represents business rights organisation AfriBusiness, said that there were links between the Constitution and the markets.

"The term appropriation without compensation has gained widespread use over these past few years, legally speaking it is more accurate to consider this as a confiscation as this is the type of legal action relevant here."

Anton van Dulsen of the Helen Suzman Foundation said that existing legislation already made provision for expropriation without compensation.

"Changing the Constitution as is proposed is not going to change anything for me, so I'm not opposed to your changing the Constitution as you propose, all I'm saying is guys, it's actually there already."

Public hearings will continue with more submissions from traditional leaders and agricultural organisations.

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