Johannesburg - Land reform, a major campaign issue in the lead-up to Wednesday's general election, cannot be separated from economic matters, Agri SA said on Tuesday.
Land reform also served as an indicator to the investor community of a how a future government would deal with the productive assets of the economy in striving for economic and social justice, Agri SA said in a statement.
“The implications of approaches to land reform cannot be ring-fenced to land ownership only. It directly affects a spectrum of other role players in the economy and will, therefore, find wider application with respect to property rights.”
It was in this regard that South Africa's constitutional provisions on property rights and the practical implementation of sensible economic policy would be vital to South Africa's future progress and stability.
“Agri SA holds an unambiguous position in this regard: it is simply ill-considered and reckless to propagate the expropriation and transfer of land without fair compensation, or by mooting mandatory forfeiture of land for the empowerment of farm workers.”
It was unreasonable to expect individual land owners to make relative, greater sacrifices than other role players in the economy in order to address national challenges, merely because property in the form of land was at issue.
“Ignoring this reality will lead to new injustices to the detriment of our young democracy,” Agri SA said.
“Farmers, including their workers, form an inextricable part of South Africa's economic and social landscape. The role players in the industry are serious about addressing the challenges of empowerment and transformation.”
There was a willingness to reach out and join hands with whoever strove for sustainable progress within the sector.
“Tomorrow's election is a key event which voters must use to secure mandates at political level that will promote harmony in striving for a shared vision on a stable and prosperous South Africa.”