More than 80 000 say no to Expropriation Bill

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Free State Agriculture (FSA) handed its official submission on the Expropriation Bill to parliament. The document is supported by more than 80 000 individuals across the country, who reject the Expropriation Bill as tabled in its current form.

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“Although parliament cannot receive hard copy submissions, we have arranged with members of the public works and infrastructure committee to receive our official submission. The submission was received by a member of the Department of Public Works and Infrastructure Committee of parliament, Madeleine Hickling, as the secretary and chairperson of the committee were unable to receive the submission in person.

“The same has been emailed to the secretary of the committee. The Expropriation Bill seeks to create a framework where expropriation of assets with nil compensation may be possible. This Expropriation Bill allows for any property (not just land) to be seized by the state and must be stopped in its current form,” says Francois Wilken, president of FSA.

Unacceptable aspects of the Expropriation Bill

FSA considers the following as unacceptable aspects of the Expropriation Bill and aspects that put the civil liberties of all South Africans at risk:

  1. De facto state control of all property (Clause 3).
  2. Municipalities will have the right to apply and regulate this law (Clause 1).
  3. Expropriation in ‘public interest’ is too broadly defined and as such implies that any reason can be used for expropriation (Clause 1).

In the FSA’s submission that was handed over to parliament, the focus is on four main concerns:

  1. The intentions of the Expropriation Bill solely for land reform.
  2. The intended compensation as outlined in the bill, opening the gap for nil compensation.
  3. The fact that the Expropriation Bill focusses on all property, not just agricultural land.
  4. The impact of the Expropriation Bill on South Africa as a whole.

If this legislation is promulgated with South Africa’s current debt status, expounded by Covid-19, it will lead to instant further credit downgrades, capital flight and a collapse of our economy, leading to an increase in poverty.

How to oppose the Expropriation Amendment Act

The FSA submission is within our specific mandate from our 3 400 commercial farmer members and has the broader support from nearly 80 000 South Africans who signed our online petition.

Anyone who wishes to oppose the Expropriation Amendment Act can record their input on FSA’s website. The input will be handed over to parliament and the number of people in support of FSA will form part of our argument against expropriation without compensation during oral submissions in parliament later this year and during the provincial public hearings. – Press release, FSA