Land expropriation without compensation and the issue of how much land would be state-owned is not getting easier to discuss. With more land hearings still taking place in various parts of the country, everyone is trying to get their point across.
The latest hearing took place in Rustenberg on Thursday as hundreds of people attempted to sign up to speak and get themselves into the venue.
Committee chairperson Vincent Smith began the hearing by insisting that “the voice of women, the voice of youth and the voice of the elderly will be heard”. Smith went on to tell the audience that there would be a 50-50 split between the men and women who wanted to be heard.
While there was once again a majority support for the land to be expropriated by the state, one woman explained that ownership is more important to her.
“I do not want the land to be expropriation, I want to be an owner of my property, I do not want to pay rent on my property. If the State takes control of the land, we will go hungry. Look at Zambia, government took the land and politicians ended up with huge chunks of land…”
The woman did not want to be named.
A counter-argument to the woman came as another remarked that due to the land being “previously taken by force”, why should there be compensation now?
As for title deeds? Numerous speakers echoed the message that the state should take control of the land and distribute it accordingly.
Thursday’s hearing also saw EFF leader Julius Malema received a hero’s welcome. As Malema walked up to the podium to speak, the room was packed full of loud “Juju” chants.
Earlier this week, President Cyril Ramaphosa explained that he did not believe that the state should take control of all the land.