President Mbeki admits to allegations made in an open challenge on Land Reform posted on the Internet

Friday, 19 August 2005

By Dr. Izak Labuschagne

 

Following the posting of an open challenge to the President on the Internet a week ago now (See http://www.globalpolitician.com/articledes.asp?ID=1089&cid=8&sid=56), evidence on how the Department of Agriculture scurried to expunge their records and how the Presidentís office was trying to avoid the issue was also posted (See www.izak.co.za/LandReformWebPage.htm).

 

The President seems clearly unable to answer the week old allegations and, in terms of the letter, he has in fact admitted to them. The challenge clearly stated: -

 

All you need to do Mr. President in order to admit the following is not to answer this letter, to acquiesce by your silence to the following allegations.

And

I would like nothing more than for you to prove me wrong. Right now though all the hard facts prove me right. If you are guilty just remain silent. The world is watching you.

 

Having at one time been involved with some 2 Billion Rands in Land Reform Projects in Southern Africa, and thus being in possession of masses of evidence and research, these allegations rest on a very powerful foundation indeed. In short, the government refuses to transfer some 30 million hectares of state land that the Minister of Land Affairs inherited from the apartheid regime to non-white beneficiaries, unless of course they vote for the ruling ANC party. The land should have been transferred in terms of laws produced by parliament in 1989, 1991, (yes even the previous regime passed such laws), 1996 and 1998 (ANC regimeís laws). In the case of the Goodhouse Project, also in terms of an agreement between the Northern Cape Government, a private sector partner and the Land Bank signed in 2000.

 

In that case we have been battling since 1998 to get state controlled land transferred to a non-white coloured community in the Northern Cape Province. Just because they are not ANC supporters, those people who were self sufficient under the previous regime are now destitute, losing their housing and are having to take children out of school to survive. This is further evidenced by the fact that this consultancy keeps getting mandates from people on state held land to do projects but expressly without government involvement. We can however do nothing about the situation because the government simply refuses to give these people their political and commercial freedom.

 

It was alleged that the Government deliberately topples projects in order to justify holding on to the land. Taxpayerís money is being used to get new projects going so that the ANCís allies and friends can scoop the cream off the top and leave it destitute and ready for the next round. In the Goodhouse case the Scorpions are investigating R 18 Mil worth of corruption. The government avers that the people are not ready to run their own projects. An insult to their intelligence and to that of the internationally renown mentors that the new landowners have selected for their proposed projects. In the case of Goodhouse where this strategy is afoot, a private sector driven project of R 40 mil is stymied because of this approach. The commercial banks made it clear; -Get the government to back off and give them their land and we will come alongside a project like this. See the project at http://www.izak.co.za/GDP%20Web%20Page/index.html

 

It was alleged that the government also refused to take up offers in the ĎWilling Buyer Willing Sellerí program in order to justify their claim that the program had failed. The very latest article on Land Reform appearing on the Internet supports this. (See http://za.today.reuters.com/news/newschannel.aspx?type=topNews)

 

It was also alleged that the President was stabbing his own people in the back by playing into the hands of those that wanted to protect first world agricultural markets from third world encroachment.

 

The shocking arrogance with which these extremely serious allegations have been admitted to underlines the fact that the Land Reform Program in South Africa is in fact very opposite to the political propaganda spun out by the ANC and their supporters. The facts clearly show that South Africa has already turned onto the tracks of the Zimbabwean type of draconian system. The cat simply slipped out the bag when the Deputy President said as much and believe me, that was no joke. The loan to Zimbabwe serves only to underwrite that statement with hard taxpayers cash. The hardship already caused to many non-ANC supporters in the land reform program is escalating as can be seen from the record of the many failed projects. A record that the government unsuccessfully tried to suppress. (See http://www.africancrisis.org/Ph_LandScandal.asp).

 

Unless the international and local media start candidly exposing these very unfortunately, uncomfortable and shocking facts, the situation here will without any doubt quickly spiral out of control as happened in Zimbabawe, and as is starting to happen in Namibia now. The SACP and Namibiaís university professors are created an impression amongst non-whites that all the land will be owned by all of them in the traditional African way and that whites must leave the land (see for example the article entitled Why Buy Back Stolen land? Dated 17 August 2005 at www.allafrica.com). This is dangerous. It is not just dangerous in respect of the inevitable starvation that will ensue as has happened everywhere else this system has been used, but it is dangerous to the first world as they will be baling out Africa for along long time to come yet. To the pro ANC media in South Africa and in other parts of the world I put the following challenge: -

 

Is it not time that some perspective was given to this problem? Please think of the malnourished children at Goodhouse and ask yourself if continuing a pro ANC reporting bias will absolve you from their cries. Is it not time the true facts were published, no matter how hard how uncomfortable they may be?

 

The full text of the challenge is as follows.

 

  1. Your government will do all it can to prevent non ANC members from being beneficiaries in the land reform program
  2. Your government will hold on to the millions of hectares of state land in the name of your minister of land affairs as long as possible so that you can continue to hold the occupants of that land to ransom with government run projects (provided they vote for you).
  3. Your government will instead of giving these landowners their freedom continue using taxpayerís money to create project after project that benefits your government officials and their friends.
  4. For your government, failed projects are a moneymaking business.
  5. For your government failed projects (at the instance of the government) serve as justification for perpetuating your draconian control over the rural voter population.
  6. For your government, undermining the policies and legislation guiding the land reform process justifies its claim that the process is failing and its intention to follow in the footsteps of Zimbabwe, which you are so careful to so clandestinely support.
    1. You have a 100% success rate in destroying projects in the land reform program.
    2. You have refused to take up offers in the willing buyer willing seller scenario and now you claim it has failed.
    3. You refuse to transfer state held land to their rightful beneficiaries in terms of the laws your government put in place.
    4. You justified the delay by saying that they are not yet ready to take transfer because they have not succeeded yet. Yet you make sure they do not.
  7. Your government is by using these machiavellian crisis management tactics in fact stabling your own people in the back as you are playing into the hands of the first world that wants to keep Southern African Agriculture stifled for as long as possible in order to protect their own markets.
  8. You are perfectly in concert with the various organisations that have made their aims in this regard clear. You Sir, are known to attend their meetings, you are part of their fraternal's and member of their secret societies.
  9. You appear to be unable to answer these allegations because they are true.
  10. Your government is too afraid to face the farmers of Goodhouse when they are assisted by their advisor. That has been proved repeatedly.
  11. I challenge you to stop your government from being so cowardice Sir and to deal with the Goodhouse issue.
  12. Give them their freedom. Transfer the land to them so that they can make a success on their own. And stop sabotaging their chances to do so.
  13. As you already know, this letter is sent under mandate from the leader of the Goodhouse Community and the Links Cloetes. I state this for the benefit of the media that will receive this letter. Mr. Cloete can be contacted on +27 76 1140745

14.  As I said Sir, If you have the guts to deal with this answer me. I would like nothing more than for you to prove me wrong. Right now though all the hard facts prove me right. If you are guilty just remain silent. The world is watching you.