Parliament extends deadline on land expropriation
Cape Town - Parliament has extended the deadline for written submissions on amendments to the Constitution to allow for the expropriation of land without compensation.
The aim of the Bill is to amend the Constitution so as to, among other things, provide that where land and any improvements thereon are expropriated for the purposes of land reform, nil compensation may be payable.
The ad hoc committee met on Thursday where all the parties agreed on the need to extend the deadline.
"This is mainly because the Bill was published over the festive season, and the public did not have sufficient time to comment meaningfully on the Bill. The initial deadline was January 31, 2020," said the committee via an emailed statement.
The public had until Friday to make written submissions on land expropriation.
But civil society organisations and other parties said there was not sufficient for the public to make comment on the Bill that was gazetted late last year.
Chairperson of the ad hoc committee Mathole Motshekga said the decision to extend lay with the committee.
“We are at one that we extend the deadline to the end of February,” said Motshekga to committee members.
He said this was a unanimous decision as all parties backed the decision of extending the deadline for written submissions by a month.
Motshekga said the committee had not made any decision on inputs received thus far on the Bill, and added he wanted to remind all political parties that the door was still open for all to make submissions.
“We will consider all inputs irrespective of which political party makes the comment. All submissions carry the same weight. It is only after the closing date for written submissions and public hearings that the committee will deliberate and resolve on the matter.”
The committee agreed to use platforms that were accessible and available to young people, for example a WhatsApp number, which would be made available as soon as it was set-up. The draft programme would also be published once it was adopted.
Political Bureau and African News Agency (ANA)