Hat Tip: Lime
Johannesburg - The department of rural development and land reform has kept farmers completely in the dark about plans to declare all productive agricultural land a national asset, an industry body has said.
Agri SA will meet the department about the issue on Monday, even though the plan has already been submitted to the departmental portfolio committee.
In its strategic plan for up to 2013 the department said it is considering the possibility of declaring all productive agricultural land a national asset.
Current owners will then receive rights to use the land on either a temporary or permanent basis.
Hans van der Merwe, chief executive of Agri SA, has said his organisation has not been consulted about this plan.
Two weeks ago when Minister of Rural Development and Land Reform Gugile Nkwinti addressed Agri SA's industry conference in Somerset West, he broadly discussed the department's strategic plan but failed to mention anything about changes in land ownership.
Theo de Jager, deputy president of Agri SA and the organisation's spokesperson on land affairs, said what is contained in the strategic plan does not accord with recent discussions held with the departmental representatives.
If this is policy, it will force commercial farmers straight into the trenches, said De Jager.
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