Commentary on the South African Land Reform Summit of JULY 2005


Per the brief of Dr. Izak Labuschagne

Wednesday, 10 August 2005


This report would have ensued earlier if it were not for the fact that the author was ill.


Here is a summary of the summit taken from news reports published on the Internet. Emphasis added by the author.


July 31, 2005, 16:15

Land Summit a huge success, says minister


Thoko Didiza, the minister of agriculture and land affairs, has hailed the country's first National Land Summit as a huge success. The summit which ended last night, adopted several resolutions, including the rejection of the market-based land reform policy based on the willing seller, willing buyer approach.

The minister says other resolutions include a call to government to use the expropriation laws, establishment of a land tax and the regulation of foreign ownership of land. The minister says the rejection of the willing seller, willing buyer approach was unanimous.


It was most certainly not unanimous! See copy of speeches at

Land Summit ends on Sunday

July 29, 2005, 15:00A

Zimbabwean professor told delegates that if land reform did not happen fast enough, people would organise themselves and force redistribution to occur. "If the state does not move when it is challenged, it will be challenged," said Professor Sam Moyo, of the African Institute for Agrarian Studies.

July 27, 2005, 16:45

The ruling African National Congress (ANC) believes government should determine the property prices to be paid in its land reform programme.


July 28, 2005, 17:45

Three African countries have warned South Africa at the Land Summit in Johannesburg that a market-led approach to land reform does not work.

Zimbabwe, Namibia and Kenya were sharing their land redistribution experience at the summit currently underway at Nasrec. Frans Tseehama, the permanent secretary for lands in Namibia, says the willing seller willing buyer concept did not work for his country and they regret having gone that route.

SACP calls for expropriation of land from whites

July 27, 2005, 18:45

The South African Communist Party (SACP) has called on government to expropriate land from white land owners to create what it says are viable farming communities.

Addressing the National Land Summit in Johannesburg, Blade Nzimande, the SACP general secretary, said government's market-based approach was failing. He says whites continue to own the majority of the country's land.

In fact the government has 30 mil ha in the name of the Minister of land Affairs. That is the majority. But that is also communism so it suits them to ignore it. The SACP voice echo’s the secret agenda’s of 70% of the ANC cabinet because that is how many of the cabinet are SACP ticket holders.


Foreign ownership of South African land slammed


July 28, 2005, 11:30

Foreigners should own very little land in South Africa, if at all, the Land Summit heard in Johannesburg today. Land and agricultural MECs were briefing delegates on resolutions taken at provincial land conferences ahead of the summit.

Khabisi Mosunkutu, the Gauteng agriculture, conservation and environment MEC, said land ownership by foreigners should be "very limited". Foreigners should rather be offered lease options as land was the country's most precious resource. He said South Africans should get first right to land ownership in the country.

Form of colonisation

Dikeledi Magadzi, the Limpopo MEC who was quick to point out she was not conveying her own personal views, told delegates her provincial conference had called for a moratorium on the sale of land to foreigners.


A government official from the Eastern Cape told delegates foreign ownership is another form of colonisation via the cheque book. "It must be given a halt."


Calls to allow new land claims

Most of the provincial conferences also called for government to allow new land claims. The deadline for claims was in December 1998. The national government has often said it is against new claims as it would be a very expensive affair and lead to economic instability. The provinces also called on government to conduct a land audit and update its register on state owned land.

Delegates to this week's summit were supposed to have access to government's interim report on its land audit. However, Thoko Didiza, the land affairs minister, said the report would be handed to her only some time next week as it had not yet been completed.

Zimbabwe rules out returning land to white farmers

July 31, 2005, 12:00

Zimbabwe will not invite back white farmers whose land was seized by Robert Mugabe's government, despite calls by the central bank chief to allow them to help the struggling agriculture sector, state media reported.

"The land here is for the black people and we are not going to give it back to anybody. We are not inviting any white farmers back," Didymus Mutasa, the security minister also in charge of lands, land reform and resettlement, told the state-owned Sunday Mail.


Since 2000 Mugabe's government has seized thousands of white-owned farms after often violent invasions by government-backed veterans of the country's 1970s struggle against white rule. But Gideon Gono, the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe governor, recently urged Mugabe's government to allow some white farmers back on to the seized farms to help revive an economy near collapse.


As we know South Africa has offered a loan of Billions of Rands to Zimbabwe, thus giving their tacit support to that Country and its policies.


Land summit was ‘hijacked’

03/08/2005 19:33  - (SA)  

Bloemfontein – The national land summit was hijacked by the South African Communist Party which has 1% political support, said Free State Agriculture president Louw Steytler on Wednesday.

It was hijacked but not by 1% of the political support. The SACP has 70% of the ANC cabinet as ticket holders of their organization. The support ex vice president Zuma has from the COSATU SACP alliance is overwhelming. The effect that the SACP/ COSATU alliance is having on the economy through their classic strike action is just as overwhelming. The SACP is waiting for ex Pres. Mandela to pass away and then they will pounce on the moderates in the ANC. The discontent fuelled by them through various strategies such as deliberately creating unemployment through strike action is wholly transparent. The fact that the ANC seem oblivious of this is just as transparent. They will use the usual ‘blame it on the whites’ strategy knowing full well that so many whites are so well duped that they can even rely on them as allies, silly as that may seem to any right thinking person. In fact the SACP have a whole paper ready for just that. They have latched on to old Siener Van Rensburg’s visions of a white rebellion and the supposed massive following that had as a reason why draconian “pre-emptive self defence action” is required against whites. Uhuru stickers have started appearing on taxis everywhere and some hardware shops have been selling up to 20,000 panga’s a week now for some two months. It sure looks likes Siener was right when he saw buckets overflowing with blood after the demise of the first black president of South Africa.


TAU predicts land-deals chaos

01/08/2005 19:04  - (SA)  

Johannesburg - The willing buyer/willing seller principle would sustain commercial agriculture and without it "institutional chaos" would result, said the Transvaal Agricultural Union on Monday.


According to the market-driven principle, no one would be compelled to sell, and sellers would be paid 100% percent market value for their land.


TAU deputy president Willie Lewies said the government was creating a climate within which the expropriation of farms with land claims on them would be justified, thus negating the willing buyer/seller idea.


DA blames Didiza

01/08/2005 14:19  - (SA)  

Cape Town - Agriculture and Land Affairs Minister Thoko Didiza should admit her own department carries the blame for the slow progress in land reform, the Democratic Alliance (DA) said on Monday.


"Land Affairs Minister Thoko Didiza should stop playing the helpless victim who blames everyone else for her own department and government's failures when it comes to land reform," DA spokesperson Maans Nel said .


If government matched its commitment to land reform with the required budget, and if it started implementing the legal measures at its disposal, the current situation would have looked dramatically different, he said.


Land reform policy rejected


On Sunday, delegates to the land summit in Johannesburg rejected land reform policy based on the willing buyer/willing seller principle.

"Government must come up with another mechanism, that is not a simple thing," Didiza's spokesperson Steve Galane said.


Deputy president Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka said at the start of the summit on Wednesday the principle was slowing down land reform.

Galane said delegates also recommended a land tax and the December 31 1998, deadline for lodging restitution claims be reviewed as some people had failed to meet it.


"All these things are still recommendations, government will respond to these and will come up with a position," Galane said.


All land claims settled in three years


Government wants all land restitution claims settled within the next three years, and 30% of agricultural land delivered to the previously disadvantaged by 2014. By December 2004, only 3% of commercial farm land had been redistributed.


Nel said there was enough anecdotal evidence to point out the incompetence of many officials in Didiza's department.

One land owner in the Free State had apparently written to the provincial land affairs department on three separate occasions to indicate his willingness to sell his land.


The department never answered these letters, despite the land owner stating he was willing to be more than flexible on the price.


Pointing fingers at the minister


"How can the department then at the same time plead there is not enough available land?" Nel asked.


"Her (Minister Didiza) attack on the 'willing buyer, willing seller' principle carries no weight considering she herself introduced measures in Parliament last year which would make expropriation easier. She has the law on her side."


"If the department wishes to buy land for redistribution, it need look no further than the 4% of South Africa's land that is available on the market every year.


"There are also millions of hectares of state-owned land that could be made available for this purpose."


Didiza would be guilty of gross dereliction of duties if she allowed land owners in South Africa to be blamed for the mistakes and incompetence of her own department, Nel said.


It was when the author developed a proper system for the willing buyer willing seller policy that the government turned up their campaign against him. They refused to pay him for his work and influenced the private sector partner he was consulting to at the time, Gil Arbel of Gili Greenworld holdings to do the same. Arbel is Kibbutz Communist and MOSSAD agent sent here to see that projects in land reform fail so as to protect the agricultural exports of Israel to the EU. He dupes the South African Government and they dupe him. But all are happy because the Club of Rome is see. What a circus?

Summary of land reform summit outcomes


The main resolutions as reported above and by agents who are privy to the policy decisions of the parliamentary sub committees are as follows: -


  1. Willing buyer willing seller is out


  1. Agricultural Land value will be determined by the state. The present approach is to pay 25% of the commercial agricultural land value. This has the backing of the financing institutions that are supposed to be the allies of farmers, AFRGI and LANDBANK.  They aver that agricultural land is over-inflated, as was the residential boom that just ended.


  1. Foreign ownership of land to be curtailed


  1. More land taxes will be introduced


  1. The deadline for land claims will be extended.


  1. Land will be expropriated where necessary


  1. Nothing was said about state owned land so it will continue to remain vested with the state and not transferred to the occupiers and tenure right holders. The reasoning for this therefore persists - because the record of failed projects on that land proves that the occupiers are not yet ready to take transfer.



Latest developments


Once the official results of the summit were out the author wrote a short line to Jan Lambert, editor of African Crisis (see WWW.AfricanCrisis.Org) The gist of it was that if anyone still could not see the writing on the wall then they would have to be blind.


A few weeks earlier the author had posted a tab on his website entitled AGRI RESTRUCTURING STRATEGIES (See The purpose of the tab was to present the best possible strategy in the current and anticipated circumstances in the land reform scenario of South Africa. The tab had a link to a file that set out the situation as succinctly as possible (see Some farmer organisations near to where the author is living were contacted with the view of setting up a meeting with the many farmers in the area facing land claims.


A few days after the summit the author met one of the more prominent sugar farmers in the area. He was amazed to learn that the farmers thought that the summit posed no risk to them. The local farming association had apparently appointed a local consultant to look into the matter and advise them of the best way forward. The consultant is to approach the local government agencies in land reform and devise a system that would no doubt be acceptable to all the role players.


Isn’t it absolutely amazing to what lengths people will go to perpetuate their dream world of denial? The pattern has repeated it self in Africa a hundred times over. White people in former colonies are faced with threats hints and political statements from parties in the new African Governments that their land will be taken, that they need to leave Africa or be driven off or killed. The whites then say that these are just the ravings of extremists, not to be taken seriously. The hints become threats and the threats are then carried out on some (such as the many farm murders in South Africa). Still the whites do not take the hint. Then the government starts with legislation aimed at divesting the whites. Incredibly, the whites tolerate this too. Then draconian policy statements follow. These too are laughed off. Following the policy statements, the resultant legislation then also becomes draconian.  Still, no bells ringing. The governments cannot believe their luck and start openly undermining their own policies to further their even more draconian ends. The whites remain comatose. Instead the whites actually approach the government for guidance as has just happened in Natal. Inevitably the governments seizes on that approach to further dupe the whites into a false sense of security while they carry right on robbing them. As stated before, it is absolutely amazing how the same pattern can be repeated time and time again without the local white population in the next country being hit by the same type of assault simply carry on as if nothing is happening.


Most of the overseas researchers of this phenomenon were in Africa, speak from experience, saw the light and moved away. The rest that concur with their views are just as amazed and can impossibly be blamed for saying that the whites that are still in Africa deserve to be raped. It certainly appears that they ones left here are looking for ways to enjoy the rape rather than resist.


But it is not that simple. There are those that cannot leave. These are the simple good rural people you find everywhere.


Little do they know that they are being used as gun-fodder by the leaders of their rural communities.


Now that is what is really going on here!


It can only be that as none of the leaders are so stupid as not to realise what is going on. Their thinking is that if they make alliances with the enemy now their future can be secured. This is the underlying reason why the Afrikaner community is fragmented. This is the reason why the simple white English and Afrikaans farmers will loose his land, end up destitute somewhere or become a farm murder statistic.


Those who believe that Africa is not ready to supply the world food basket are justified in their thinking.


The aid that will be directed to projects designed to fail because of overloaded infrastructure development and management costs will continue to flow to dupe the rest of the world’s bleeding hearts.


In Africa simple rural folk will be destroyed as usual and, unfortunately, the traitors remain those chosen to prosper.