Focus on effective implementation of land reform plans

The land debate has become increasingly radical during the past decade. The attempt to amend section 25 of the Constitution was hopefully the lowest point in the radical approach to land reform. A lack of progress with land reform has probably contributed to this climate of radicalism and polarisation.

Agri SA welcomes the acknowledgement during the debate that title deeds are important, as well as the intention to make beneficiaries part of the economy. Title deeds are an extremely effective way to ensure real and sustainable economic empowerment of beneficiaries.

“The outcome of the debate on the amendment of section 25 of the Constitution in Parliament today is positive for the future of South Africa and will contribute towards renewed confidence in the economy”, said Jaco Minnaar, the president of Agri SA. The proposed amendment failed to secure the required two-thirds majority of votes.

“It is critically important that we now make real progress, with effective and sustainable plans to make a success of land reform. This must happen within the existing policy and legislative framework, including programmes such as blended finance and the agricultural and agro-processing master plan (AAMP). Attention must also be given to workable incentives for land reform, and the partnership approach should be strongly supported.” This was the response of Willem de Chavonnes Vrugt, chair of Agri SA’s Centre of Excellence: Land after the parliamentary debate on the amendment of section 25 of the Constitution.

According to Chavonnes Vrugt, “The report of the high-level panel lead by former deputy president Kgalema Motlanthe in 2017 which, among others, found that section 25 does not pose an obstacle to land reform, but rather other factors such as inadequate budgets, poor implementation, corruption and a lack of political will, remains relevant. The emphasis must be on effective implementation. The high-level panel’s recommendations should be revisited and we need to support the blended finance programme and agricultural master plan”, he added in closing.

In his reaction, Christo van der Rheede, executive director of Agri SA, emphasised the importance of successful, sustainable land reform for social stability in South Africa.


Annelize Crosby Head: Land and legal Affairs (C) 082 388 0017

Willem de Chavonnes Vrugt Chair of Agri SA’s Centre of Excellence: Land (C) 082 946 2303

Christo van der Rheede Executive director Agri SA (C) 083 380 3492

Jaco Minnaar Agri SA President