Threat of instability if state does not expropriate land, says Ramaphosa
President Cyril Ramaphosa believes South Africa risks becoming unstable if the state does not expropriate land without compensation.
"If we do not address it‚ it is going to cause instability in our country. If there is any risk‚ it will be around the land issue."
Ramaphosa was addressing black commercial and emerging farmers at a gala dinner at the Agribusiness Transformation Conference hosted by the African Farmers’ Association of South Africa (Afasa) in Kempton Park‚ Johannesburg‚ on Monday evening.
"Many of you as farmers would like access to land. It is necessary that we should do this to give access to those among us that want to work the land‚ so that we can heal this festering wound of the past. The only way to heal that wound is to give land to our people‚" Ramaphosa said.
"It will also bring about stability …. We have embarked on a process of accelerated land reform. Some are getting terrified‚ some are even sending false messages abroad … It (land expropriation without compensation) has ignited a vigorous and welcomed debate. It has required that we confront the injustices of the past. Even those people who have land are now beginning to realise the injustices of the past."
Ramaphosa said land expropriation without compensation was only one of the mechanisms government was using to effect land reform.
"This whole process is but one of the mechanisms that we are going to utilise to effect land reform. The others are programs that we have had in place for a long time .… All South Africans want to know they have security of tenure around property rights."