The Agriculture, Land Reform, and Rural Development Minister Thoko Didiza says government is ready to deal with the contentious issue of national communal land tenure.
The Inter-Ministerial Committee on Land Reform will on Friday host a two-day summit on the issue in Boksburg, east of Johannesburg.
The focus will be on the millions of people that have not secured tenure of the land despite their families having lived there for generations.
The need for the current land reform programme arose from the racially discriminatory laws and practices which were in place for the largest part of the twentieth century, especially those related to land ownership.
The application of these discriminatory laws and practices resulted in extreme inequalities in relation to land ownership.
Didiza says, “We’ll be able to have consensus about the nature of policies that we require for communal land tenure as well as the legal framework that must support them. That will enable us to actually have a better lend administration process in communal areas. You know indigenous tenure in South Africa, this is understood as customary tenure where people who stay in communal areas where there are traditional leaders, they do have secure tenure and they know that their right to land will never be taken away.”
Earlier this month, the more than R20 million settlement by Rural Development and Land Reform department to the Anglican Church in Flagstaff in the Eastern Cape has brought hope to locals.
The church was dispossessed of its land more than 70 years ago and it was handed over to the Transkei government which then used it as a hospital.
Didiza joined the community and the church in their celebration of the settlement.
The department brought gardening tools for local farmers to assist them as they strive to alleviate poverty in their communities.
VIDEO: R 20 million settlement by Rural Development and Land Reform department to the Anglican Church: