South Africa’s largest farmers’ union urged the government on Wednesday to revise its new policy of taking back unproductive farms.

Theo de Jager, deputy president of farmers body AgriSA, said the government’s “use it or lose it” policy was likely to worsen tensions between unions, the government and land reform beneficiaries.

“The whole process should be redesigned. We fear that this (use it or lose it policy) might lead to even more conflict … on land reform farms,” De Jager told a media briefing.

Tensions have surfaced over the selection of beneficiaries for the land redistribution programme, with unions accusing the government of giving land that should be used for commercial farming to inexperienced and inadequately supported people, threatening South Africa’s food security.

Land reform is a sensitive issue in South Africa, highlighted by the decline in agriculture in neighbouring Zimbabwe, where President Robert Mugabe’s government violently evicted white commercial farmers from their land.

“We call for a total redesign of the composition of beneficiaries,” De Jager said. “For one, land should not be transferred to whole communities, it doesn’t work.”

He said farm workers and ex-farm workers should be given priority in the selection of beneficiaries for land redistribution. “Many of them have spent a lifetime on farms and very often they have all the practical know-how,” he said.



2 Responses

  1. This is the message from the orphanage beging you help with seeds and money for workers.
    from tenants of orphanage at lake bunyonyi in Uganda.

  2. i beg your support for this orphans.
    God bless you.

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