SA’s land redistribution drive will not affect communal land controlled by tribal chiefs, President Cyril Ramaphosa said on Friday, in a bid to defuse growing tension over the issue. On Wednesday Zulu King Goodwill Zwelithini warned of possible violence if the state tried to expropriate communal land, which makes up 13% of SA. Public hearings are under way to gauge support for expropriation of land without compensation. Reformers in the ANC had wanted the policy to apply to tribal land to provide people in such areas with direct property ownership. This would significantly dilute the power held by traditional leaders, who argue they are the custodians of land that was communal before Europeans arrived on the scene. "It is not government’s intention to go and grab land from rural communities, land that is under the control of traditional leaders," Ramaphosa said at a business breakfast. Tribal authorities control access to resources on such land, including who can farm certain plots,...

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