President Cyril Ramaphosa has unequivocally distanced himself from the position of the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) on the nationalization of the country.
Answering questions in the National Assembly on Wednesday afternoon, Ramaphosa said that in a recent cabinet leak leakage decided that the state should begin a process of quickly releasing land that belonged to it. He said that there is a lot of land in municipalities that must be released as serviced stands.
In a follow-up question, EFF leader Julius Malema said that the state should own the entire country – including the rich suburbs of Cape Town and Hout Bay and Camps Bay.
"This thing of title deeds is a design," Malema said.
He said that those who suggest that people get property rights know that they are poor and will sell their land, which means that the rich can buy it back.
He asked whether Ramaphosa agrees that the country should be nationalized.
Ramaphosa said that Malema was concerned that beneficiaries of property titles would sell their land, a "false fear" and said that he did not support nationalization.
"People who get property titles become so proud that they have something they've built with their own hands," he said.
"Yes!" some DA MPs called.
"We must not deprive our people of this deep desire and the search to own their own property," continued Ramaphosa.
He said that land reform must empower people.
Ramaphosa was pleased that there was a "growing agreement" in the country to change the racially distorted pattern of land ownership.
He praised the largest farmers' organization, AgriSA, because he said that colonialism and apartheid & # 39; really bad for land ownership & # 39; in the country.
"They say: & # 39; We want to correct the injustices from the past & # 39 ;."
Ramaphosa met with representatives of AgriSA on Tuesday.
He criticized that "spreading lies and rumors" such as conservative lobby group AfriForum, which "overseas said that the ANC is after a land grab."
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Ramaphosa insisted, as he had done since the ANC adopted a resolution at its conference in December, that the process must be orderly.
The first questions were asked by the leader of the Democratic Alliance, Mmusi Maimane.
Maimane asked whether the ANC announced on 31 July that it would support the amendment of Article 25 of the Constitution to allow expropriation without compensation to undermine the parliamentary process to consider whether the section should be modified.
Ramaphosa said he made the announcement as ANC president, just as other leaders of political parties made a statement on the issue, including Maimane himself.
He said the decision was informed by the views of the people at the public hearings of the Joint Constitution Review Committee and also by ANC members.
He said that the ANC "is trying to make explicit what is currently in the Constitution" – that country can be expropriated without compensation.
"The aim of the proposed amendment is to strengthen the property rights of all South Africans," he said.
He said that the debate about expropriation without compensation "has released a wonderful process in the country".
"The issue of the country will not disappear, we have to change land or ownership of property in our country, that goes without saying.
"It must be underpinned by development," Ramaphosa said, adding that land reform should make the agricultural sector grow.
"We have to do it (land reform) in a way that will improve the stability in our country."
He said South Africans do not have to be afraid of the process of changing the pattern of land ownership.
FF Plus leader Pieter Groenewald said that expropriation without compensation would not accelerate land reform.
"The message of the farmers is that they will not leave their country freely," he said.
Ramaphosa mostly answered Groenewald in Afrikaans. He said that what had to be achieved in South Africa was transformation, development and stability.
"If we do not have a transformation, we will not have stability," he said.
"There was a historical injustice that continues to fight out the wound."