Land reform gets R10bn as ANC punts expropriation

2019-02-20 14:41 - Khulekani Magubane, Fin24
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Minister of Finance Tito Mboweni’s Budget speech allocated R10.4bn to the Department of Rural Development and Land Reform to bolster the department and its entities' capacity to expedite the land restitution process.

This was consistent with government's fresh commitment to land reform through, among other things, the African National Congress-led plans to amend section 25 of the Constitution to allow for the expropriation of land without compensation.

During his Budget speech in Parliament on Wednesday afternoon, the minister said the Land Bank would support smallholder farmers, leverage partnerships with other financial institutions and disburse R3bn in the next financial year.

"The Department of Rural Development and Land Reform is allocated R3.6bn in 2019/20, R3.3bn in 2020/21 and R3.5bn in 2021/22 for its restitution programme. The National Treasury, through the Government Technical Advisory Centre, has been helping the commission to implement strategies for settling land claims quickly," said the 2019 Budget review.

The Budget review said the Department of Rural Development and Land Reform submitted an additional funding request of R2.7bn over the Medium-Term Expenditure Framework period for the establishment of a fully autonomous commission.

The Budget review said R887m has been allocated to the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries over the medium term for the Land Bank for the blended finance mechanism.

It said over the 2019 Medium-Term Expenditure Framework period R451.8m was allocated to the Office of the Valuer-General and the entity had a surplus of R51.1m by the end of 2017/18