All data is delayed
See More

Bid to tackle fraudulent land claims

Sep 05 2013 14:24

Pretoria - Cabinet has approved submission of the restitution of land rights amendment bill to parliament, acting government spokesperson Phumla Williams said on Thursday.

"The bill amends the Restitution Act to extend the date for the lodging of claims for restitution to December 31 2018," she told reporters following Cabinet's regular meeting on Wednesday.

"It also criminalises the lodgement [lodging] of fraudulent claims and it simplifies the procedure for the appointment of judges to the Land Claims Court," she said.

The previous deadline for claims was December 31 1998.

If the bill became law, it would allow those, who missed the first deadline to claim, opening the door to new claims for those dispossessed by homeland betterment schemes, including white people.

It would also allow people to lodge claims that were previously refused.

The land claims process was designed to compensate those who were dispossessed of land rights after June 13 1913 as a result of past racially discriminatory laws.

Deputy land claims commissioner at the Commission on Restitution of Land Rights Thami Mdontswa said legal process would be instituted against "chancers".

"Criminality will exist where a person lodges a claim with an intention of defrauding the state, where there is evidence that this person was not removed from the area they are claiming," he said.

"From the consultations leading to this amendment, we got a sense that there are people out there who would like to take chances. Someone may be thinking ‘there is a coal mine there and I place myself in the history of the area and lodge a claim' [of land restitution]."

He said investigating the authenticity of a land claim was a costly exercise for government institutions.

"What we then wanted to achieve [with the amendment] is to have it as a deterrent," said Mdontshwa.

Follow Fin24 on Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and Pinterest.

sa economy  |  land reform


Read Fin24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Company Snapshot

We're talking about:


With infrastructure spending having been identified as one of the key focus areas of the National Development Plan, tradesmen will continue to play a critical role in growing the South African economy through their skills..

Money Clinic

Money Clinic
Do you have a question about your finances? We'll get an expert opinion.
Click here...

Voting Booth

A 30% a month return on investment is:

Previous results · Suggest a vote