A meet-and-greet session between the District Six Working Committee and the new minister of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural development could speed restitution. Picture: Tracey Adams/African News Agency (ANA) Archives
Cape Town - A meet-and-greet session between the District Six Working Committee and the new minister of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural development, could speed the process of restitution.

“The meeting was called at the request by new minister Thoko Didiza. The meeting was really about the minister just getting to meet all the different leaderships in District Six, establish common ground and map a way forward in getting closure for the people of District Six, who have been waiting more than 20 years for restitution,” said Shahied Ajam chairperson of the District Six Working Committee.

The District Six claimants are currently locked in a class action lawsuit against the government over its failure to deliver restitution 25 years into democracy.

When Didiza was appointed in May they welcomed her appointment but said they had high expectations.

“In other words, her message was clear: let bygones be bygones and let’s all start on a fresh page purely for the sake of the people. The District Six Working Committee welcomed the minister’s gesture and affirmed our commitment. The committee also once again echoed the clarion call for unity among the groups,” Ajam said.

The former minister of Rural Development and Land Reform, Maite Nkoana-Mashabane, was ordered by the court to submit a detailed plan for the development of District Six back in May. Instead she submitted papers saying she would not be able to do so before August.

Nkoana-Mashabane said a “holistic plan” was subject to discussions.

Didiza, together with the deputy ministers, Mcebisi Skwatsha and Sdumo Dlamini, is expected to table the department’s programmes implementation plans for the 2019/20 financial year during the Budget Vote Speech next week Tuesday.

The department was unable to respond to queries by the time of going to print.

@MarvinCharles17

[email protected]

Cape Argus