Hi Jerry Bolitna,
1. An internet search through www.google.com on the topic ‘land reform’ linked me to an article in www.africa.com regarding a bulletin entitled ‘Committee to Hear Public Submissions On Land Reform’. The bulletin invites submissions and discloses that there will be hearings regarding the Land Reform process in South Africa at the National Assembly in Cape Town starting on the 13th of this month. During a subsequent conversation with Elton Greeve at your offices in the Houses of Parliament I was referred to you. Mr. Greeve also provided me with your e-mail address, hence this communication.
2. As a Strategic Planner and Australian Certified Investment Planner registered on the Sydney Stock Exchange I hold several mandates for the deployment of agriculture / land reform related projects, as such, from various significant groups of previously disadvantaged individuals (PDI’s) with long records of occupation on very large areas of state owned land. The mandates cover extensive areas of land and a significant grouping of people at Goodhouse, Rust de Winter, Giyani and various other areas of lesser importance. One of the projects (the one at Goodhouse) is detailed under my web page www.izak.co.za under the tab marked GROUP ONE. However, the financing of this project has been hampered by state due to its inability or unwillingness to transfer the land to the PDI’s in terms of existing statutes giving them that right dating back to 1987!
2.1. The government have unfortunately embarked on a policy of stonewalling with regards to the Goodhouse debacle, as a result of which we are now in the process of finalizing papers for an application to the High Court at Kimberly, seeking an order in the context mandamus (forcing her to carry out the law) as well as an declarative accompanied by suitable interdicts against the Minister of Land Affairs and it’s agents.
2.2. The situation at Goodhouse has become a humanitarian crisis since the PDI’s concerned there are beginning to show serious signs of malnutrition. This situation has already attracted the attention of the overseas community. Moreover Investment risk triggers (IRT) have also ensued. See the tab marked LAND REFORM under www.izak.co.za. The detail in that link clearly illustrates how the government of South Africa deliberately de-rail projects in the land reform program so that they can delay transferring the land to PDI’s. This of course allows the government to protract its political control over the PDI’s and gives them another opportunity to share in public funding to cover project set-up and running costs etc.
3. A full disclosure of the situation will also ensue on the 21st at a prominent African Development Conference at Sandton in Johannesburg. The disclosure will focus on the fact that the government has refused to deal with the situation knowing full well that a humanitarian crisis was developing. A previous disclosure made at another conference last month has resulted in a decision to form a delegation that will make disclosure of these issues to NEPAD.
4. The Mandates from these various grouping of PDI’s arise out of similar situations to that at Goodhouse. As a result the common and indeed the main criteria of each mandate is that a project be deployed without any government involvement whatsoever as the government have totally destroyed their bona fides regarding the state’s land reform policy with the mandatees. It must be noted that these mandates were all spontaneous and unsolicited and arrived at my office due to the fact that it became known that I had identified evidence of the government’s male fide modus operandi in the Goodhouse and other several other projects. Various other prominent individuals in the agricultural sector have also identified these problems, many having written papers, articles and books on the issue. The government’s response has been aimed at labeling this type of exposure as being far-right propaganda by the previously advantaged white farming community. etc. Now we have a situation where the no-white PDI’s are re-enforcing these findings by the mandates now in the picture.
5. Various aid agencies, agri related service providers, financiers and insurers have noted the risks embodied in this situation and have voiced their support for further disclosure to NEPAD and the UN.
6. Following invitation from various private sector forums, conferences and seminars in the agricultural sector, the subsequent submission of the writer at these forums is earmarked by the presentation of some rather serious questions in land reform programs, not only in South Africa but also in the rest of the third world. Problems such as the issue of land collateral and foreclosure on traditional tribal lands and other underdeveloped agricultural communities are focused on. Several proposed solutions to replace land collateral as security in the financing of agricultural projects with other commercial instruments and tools are presented. The development of a standard of workable demographics that will ensure sustainability and produce better bankable documents for projects is also presented. Various other factors such as the NEPAD policy of cross-sector collaboration that is being hampered by the lack of credible operators due to corrupt practices in both the private but mainly the public sector is also under discussion.
7. The minister and those of her subordinates in Kimberly have been repeatedly made fully aware of the problems for well over 18 months, and therefore I will not at this stage encumber your hearings with what is a rather substantial volume of evidence. The first applications to court will in any event be made public early next week.
7.1. The aim of the application is to force the government to keep to their promise of transferring land to the PDI’s at Goodhouse instead of to another government organ of state.
8. Accordingly, please forgive the rather cynical nature of this presentation, but I am sure you will understand that it is justified in the light of the fact that the government has thus far refused to so much as communicate with regards to these issues, in the case of Goodhouse for well over 18 months now. As a result it has inevitably created the overwhelming impression that the government clearly does not have the courage to openly face their electorate on these issues. It gives impetus to some rather well substantiated allegations that the government has a lot to hide. Stonewalling causes frustration and mistrust. When it results in suffering it creates resentment and anger. When these sentiments start to emerging amongst large portions of the populous, especially those that have relied on proper Land Reform the government’s by now well known stonewalling tactics are conducted at it’s own peril.
9. One thing is absolutely clear. Unless the government comes out of the woodwork and faces these issues and engages in intelligent communication regarding possible solutions, they can only give further to prove allegations that it is primarily engaged in what appears to be the very obvious (draconian) Machiavellian strategy of creating crises with which to justify expropriation under the Act of parliament already in place to those ends. This perception is now not only already firmly established with a growing mass of PDI’s as the current status quo but is growing at an alarming rate, not only with the occupants of government owned land, but also with the local and international players in the agricultural sector that attend both the private and public sector conferences on the issue.
10. At this late stage however, I cannot perceive how the government will suddenly change from it’s stonewalling on the issues, as the disclosure exposes some underlying strategies that the government would rather keep hidden from public view for as long as possible. In our view that alone is the primary reason a proper inquiry through the independent organ of the judiciary (and under the appropriate protection of the judiciary) is now completely unavoidable.
11. Should, your committee however, be able to ensure some meaningful reaction (devoid of the usual one-sided political rhetoric) from the Minister responsible for Land Reform, then there might well be some merit in making a presentation to your committee. It must however be stressed that these issues have been left unattended by the minister for so long that there is now a situation giving rise to urgent litigation. In short the opportunity for lengthy negotiations has been lost. I say this because people are literally starving now. Should dialogue begin only now the government will need to provide substantial funding to deal with the ongoing suffering it has caused. Assets like farm implements and irrigation infrastructure collected over years of hard work has been sold. Creditors have foreclosed due to no income whatsoever. Children have had to leave school. People have become malnourished. People have foregone medical treatment and have died. These are just some of the problems caused by the costly exercise of government interference followed by a stonewalling of the problems it has caused.
12. The response or not to this e-mail will no doubt speak volumes not only to the many PDI’s that have entrusted me with their mandates, to the delegates that will be addressed at the various conferences etc. but also in the impending litigation at Kimberley.
Dr. Izak Labuschagne
(ACIP) (IAFP) Dealers Rep. No S.I.25015 Dr. Eccl. Law
CEO SADC DFT, CIO Sect. 38 Commission of Inquiry
P O Box 412, Mtunzini, 3867 KZN, South Africa
Cell (073) 1 5678 25
Tel +27 (0)35 340 1127
Fax +27 (0) 83 647 2185
You will note that this e-mail has been copied to various other interested parties in the land reform process for no other reason than to ensure the safety of the writer, who has, suffered threats and attacks (some under investigation by various national and international law enforcement agencies) due to the disclosures made in the national, public and judicial interest by the writer. Please note that the writer accordingly found it necessary that the vast volume of persons copied were copied BCC (and will remain undisclosed) in order to protect them from potential harassment.