It is difficult to interpret the recently published draft rules introducing black shareholding requirements for new water use licences as anything other than a crude attempt by government to Band-Aid its own failure over the last 30 years to achieve meaningful reform in the farming sector.

At best the proposed regulations, which propose that certain enterprises would need between 25% and 75% black shareholding to apply for water licences, will achieve superficial and cosmetic transformation where the only real change would be in the numbers reported by politicians in speeches...

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