South Africans are well within their rights to exercise their sovereignty in dealing with the exclusive and discriminatory laws passed by apartheid government. Picture: Bongani Mbatha/African News Agency (ANA) Archives
South Africans are well within their rights to exercise their sovereignty in dealing with the exclusive and discriminatory laws passed by apartheid government. Picture: Bongani Mbatha/African News Agency (ANA) Archives

Land expropriation: plan for the worst

By Rankepile Khomo Time of article published Mar 24, 2020

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JOHANNESBURG - As the country is eagerly waiting for the government to finalise the expropriation of land without compensation, I suggest that we may as well start to plan for the worst.

South Africans are well within their rights to exercise their sovereignty in dealing with the exclusive and discriminatory laws passed by apartheid government.

As it were, we must be cautious as we digest what US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said about our efforts as a country to deal with the land question. He said the proposed policy to change section 25 of the Constitution to allow us to expropriate land without compensation would be disastrous for the South African economy and its people.

I wish that the US Secretary of State could take a leaf out of a book by the leader of the Conservative Party and the current British Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, who openly admitted during a campaign speech that his country played a “shameful” role in Zimbabwe's economic woes.

We also hear that the US government has asked the Zimbabwean government to return land to white farmers as a condition to lift economic sanctions. This is rather shameful.

All Zimbabweans, white and black, must find an amicable solution and the US must stop weaponising this issue to fulfil its imperialist gains.

What we do not hear from the local and international media is why London did not honour the Lancaster House agreement, 20 years later.

Second, the criticism about the land seizures, prompted by white farmers digging in their heels, hiding behind the willing buyer, willing seller principle, was a one-sided argument which the US and British governments did little to handle in a way to assist the Zimbabwean government.

What more could happen if we proceed with expropriation of land without compensation?

In taking from Pompeo's argument, I am worried the country can end up in chaos, isolated and sanctioned. The reality is we must plan for the worst.

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