Failed land expropriation bid shows ANC short of allies, says analyst

Political analyst Ralph Mathekga said that the ANC's failed attempt to amend the Constitution may motivate the opposition to use it against the party in other matters.

ANC flag. Picture: Boikhutso Ntsoko/Eyewitness News.

CAPE TOWN - The African National Congress (ANC)'s failed attempt to amend the Constitution to allow for land expropriation without compensation is being seen as sign that this will make it difficult for the party to convince other parties in the future.

Political analyst Ralph Mathekga said that the ANC was short on allies and could not be unilateral in its approach to government and land policy from now on.

The ANC ended the year on a bad note when it failed to get the two-thirds to pass the 18th Constitutional Amendment Bill to allow for land expropriation without compensation.

Mathekga said that the ANC's failed attempt to amend the Constitution may motivate the opposition to use it against the party in other matters.

He said that the vote on the 18th Constitutional Amendment Bill happened at a time when the ANC was already short on allies.

Mathekga said that this could be a sign of things to come for the party on other policies.

"This comes at a time when the ANC is running short of allies and it actually needs allies to pass policy, especially critical issues. The success of the opposition to push against this might motivate the opposition to actually even try other things to challenge the ANC. I don't see the ANC going back to rally political support in pushing this one through. They just have to do damage control."

Meanwhile, Agricultural Business Chamber CEO, Dr John Purchase, said there may be other attempts to tinker with the Constitution, but he doubted this.

"I think Parliament will then have to consider it, it might come, it might come in another revised form. I would be very surprised though if that were to carry," Purchase said.

He said that the more than three-year process delayed the necessary land reform models that were already on the table.

"And the Constitution actually allows you broad powers for land reform. If you read it carefully, it was written for land reform," he said.