140701. Cape Town. Rural Development and Land Reform Minister Gugile Nkwinti said around R24 billion has been spent on land restitution up until March 2014. President Jacob Zuma on Monday signed the Restitution of Land Rights Amendment Act into law. It provides for the reopening of the land claim process for those who missed the 31 December 1998 deadline. Starting on Tuesday, South Africans who had land taken away from them during apartheid can lodge claims until the end of July 2019. Nkwinti says since the inception of the restitution programme, about 1,8 million people have benefited. Picture Henk Kruger/Cape Argus

Johannesburg - Land reform resolutions adopted at the ANC's elective conference in Mangaung in 2012 will be implemented, Minister Gugile Nkwinti said on Thursday.

“We are here because we are saying to South Africans, these are the resolutions we are implementing now.”

He was speaking at the start of a three-day national land tenure summit in Boksburg, on the East Rand.

“On Saturday when we (leave) here, we want to say we are moving closer to implementing the resolutions adopted in Mangaung 2012.”

In its policy document the party proposes, among other things, that farm labourers assume ownership of half the land on which they are employed.

This would be “proportional to their contribution to the development of the land, based on the number of years they had worked on the land”.

The “historical owner” of the farm “automatically retains” the other half.

According to the policy proposals, tabled by Nkwinti, with a deadline for feedback of April next year, government would pay for the 50 percent to be shared by workers.

This money would not be paid to the farm owner, but go into an investment and development fund, to be jointly owned by the parties constituting the new ownership regime.

On Thursday, Nkwinti told reporters farmers would need to be rewarded for the contribution they had made to the land.

Workers would have to be trained on how to manage the farms and keep them profitable under their own administration, as they already knew how to take care of the land.