It represents a ‘sell-out’ arrangement: Opposition parties on failed land bill

The ANC on Tuesday failed to garner enough votes to pass the bill, which would have resulted in the amendment of Section 25 of the Constitution to allow for land expropriation without compensation.

FILE: Julius Malema, leader of the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF). Picture: AFP

CAPE TOWN - Opposition parties have welcomed the decision by the National Assembly not to pass the 18th constitutional amendment bill to allow for land expropriation without compensation.

The African National Congress (ANC) on Tuesday failed to garner enough votes to pass the bill, which would have resulted in the amendment of Section 25 of the Constitution to allow for land expropriation without compensation.

Almost all opposition parties voted against the amendment bringing an end to a prolonged four-year process that divided parties and society.

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The ANC had a tall task and required 267 votes or a two-thirds majority to pass the amendment bill to amend the Constitution.

The party only managed 204 after most parties rejected the bill.

Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) leader Julius Malema said they voted against the amendment bill in its current format because it represented a "sell-out" arrangement and was a departure from the party's original motion in 2018.

“The EFF rejects this bill because it’s a complete departure from the radical proposal that was made. Our remain expropriation of land without compensation and will never change.”

Democratic Alliance (DA) caucus chair Dr Annelie Lotriet said the failure to amend Section 25 of the constitution was a victory for South Africa's constitutional order.

“It’s a victory for the constitution, for all those who believe that property rights lie at the heart of a prosperous society.”

Justice Minister Ronald Lamola said the DA, EFF and FF-Plus' rejection of the bill was evidence that they agree on everything including their opposition to land reform.

He said the party would continue to fight for its quest to expropriate land without compensation.