Chairman of South Africa’s ruling African National Congress has backed calls for land expropriation in the country.
According to Reuters, Gwede Mantashe was quoted as saying that the state should take land from those who own more than 12,000 hectares without compensation.
“You shouldn’t own more than 12,000 hectares of land and therefore if you own more, it should be taken without compensation,” ANC Chairman Gwede Mantashe, who is also the country’s mines minister, told the News24 website in an interview published on Wednesday.
You shouldn’t own more than 12,000 hectares of land and therefore if you own more, it should be taken without compensation.
It was not immediately clear whether his comments represented an official ANC policy. But Reuters said four key party officials did not answer their phones when reached for clarification.
More than two decades after the end of apartheid, white people still own most of South Africa’s land.
Ownership patterns remain highly emotive as the government has been slow to transfer land to the black majority after centuries of colonial and racial oppression.
South Africa’s ruling ANC plans to amend the constitution to redistribute land , but this has been interpreted negatively by some investors, who see the plan as undermining property rights.
The ANC has sought to allay those fears, saying land reform will follow a parliamentary process.