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Next week parliament is to consider draft legislation to amend the constitution. The issue is the state’s power over property and has been labelled expropriation without compensation. This is one of the two fundamental aspects of the relationship between citizens and the state in this or any country.

There are two rights that penetrate to the heart, literally and figuratively. One’s right to one’s body and mind (guaranteed in our constitution), and one’s rights to one’s land and property (now under threat).

It is strange to read from government submissions that there is an overwhelming imperative for the transfer of quantities of land from white to black. How then do we account for the lack of interest in using the proceeds of state capture to buy land? This is estimated at more than R1-trillion to date.

No doubt some of this stolen money has been invested in land. But if the land imperative were really such as to justify dismantling one leg of the constitution, surely it would have been glaringly evident by now that hundreds of billions of rand — the proceeds of corruption — have flowed into farms and land?

This vacuum in the deployment of the stolen trillions speaks volumes. The implication is clear — don’t chop off one of our constitutional legs.

Willem Cronje
Cape Town

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