The South African National Roads Agency (Sanral) will be completing its pre-resolution meetings with the communities of the Thembisile Hani Local municipality on the process of land acquisition on Wednesday.
The Agency, in partnership with the Department of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development has convened community engagements on the Moloto road project to explain the land acquisition process to community members. Over 150 landowners will be affected but Sanral says only five families will have to be relocated.
Land acquisition is a contentious issue on the R573 Moloto road project. It has often been met with resistance by affected communities. But engagements with Sanral are now under way. Communities say land-related matters need to be ironed-out first.
“We want to know how those who’re affected are going to be compensated first,” says Andrew Mahlangu, community representative.
Traditional leaders have also been roped in.
“We’re happy with how things are being explained,” says Inkosi Johannes Mahlangu.
Over 150 landowners have been identified for the land acquisition process.
And for compensation, Section 12 of the Expropriation Act, no 63 of 1975 requires that it be calculated as the sum of the market value of the property or right, being the amount which the property would have realized if sold in the open market by a willing seller to a willing buyer and an amount to make good any actual financial loss caused by the expropriation or acquisition.
“We’re using a company called Propsol, so they are going to negotiate with affected individuals so of the 156 we have identified less than five that needs to be relocated so we will negotiate with them so we will see if the land that is acquired and the remaining land is still going to be usable and if not that process calls for relocation. So, we negotiate with them and what we do is that we go to the tribal authorities to get some sites and Sanral is going to buy sites for them,” says Sanral’s David Thubane.
Thubane says once everything is settled, they’ll engage the same communities for the formal signing of a resolution before the land can be acquired. After which, this section of the project will go ahead.
Sanral has invested R3.7 billion for the first phase of the road upgrade in the Mpumalanga and Limpopo areas.
The project is expected to create over 12 000 jobs.