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Assessing and promoting civil and minority rights in South Africa.

[Source: BizNews by Anthea Jeffery.]

A parliamentary ad hoc committee is pushing ahead with the drafting of a bill to amend Section 25 (the property clause) and allow expropriation without compensation (EWC). The committee has developed two possible options for the wording of this amendment bill, and is considering a third proposal for which the EFF is pushing strongly.

These points emerged from a meeting convened by the committee in Parliament last week. At this ‘constitutional dialogue on land ownership’, the committee – formally the Ad Hoc Committee to Initiate and Introduce Legislation Amending Section 25 of the Constitution – made it clear that the decision to amend Section 25 has already been taken and cannot be revisited. Hence, its sole task is to draw up an amendment bill that can be tabled in the National Assembly by the end of March 2020.

Under the committee’s Option 1, sub-sections 25(2) and (3) would be amended so as to limit the obligation to pay compensation on expropriation. This would be done by adding a proviso stating that ‘a court may determine that no compensation is payable in the event of expropriation of land for purposes of land reform’. However, ‘where compensation is payable’, its amount would have to be ‘just and equitable’, as Section 25 currently provides.

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South Africa at a Glance
58 780 000 (mid 2019 estimate)
3.6% y/y in November 2019 (CPI) & +2.3 y/y in November 2019 (PPI)
-0.6% q/q (3rd quarter of 2019)
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