Land hearings have continued to draw in thousands of South Africans seeking to have their voices heard on the contentious issue of land reform. Picture: Tumi Pakkies/African News Agency (ANA)

Johannesburg - Parliament's land hearings have continued to draw in thousands of South Africans seeking to have their voices heard on the contentious issue of land reform. 

The Constitutional Review Committee is receiving public submissions on the possibility of reviewing section 25 of the Constitution to allow for the expropriation of land without compensation. 

The hearings started in Gauteng this week, and the first stop was Westonaria on Thursday. 

The committee also held sessions in East London where residents were confronted with long queues that snaked around the Queenstown City Hall as many people wanted to be heard. 

The hearings are expected to conclude in August. 

Committee chair Vincent Smith admitted that the hearings were being used as grievance platforms by residents that had issues with service delivery. 
 
A number of residents spoke in support of amending the Constitution to allow for expropriation of land without compensation. There were also residents who spoke against the move, citing various reasons why the Constitution should not be amended. 

On Friday, hearings continued in the Vaal and will commence in Tshwane on Saturday. 

In April, the majority of parties in Parliament voted overwhelming for amending the property clause in the Constitution to allow the government to expropriate land without compensation. The motion was brought by the EFF and was supported by the ANC and smaller parties.

The DA did not support the motion and the party has been outspoken against the resolution. The party has been criticised for sending messages to thousands of people warning them that the ANC and EFF were working together to “take people’s private homes”.