POLITICAL WEEK AHEAD: Land expropriation report comes before parliament
National assembly and national council of provinces are likely to adopt the report on the review of section 25 of the constitution intended to allow the expropriation of land, writes Theto Mahlakoana
Parliament’s joint constitutional review committee’s report on the review of section 25 of the constitution intended to allow the expropriation of land without compensation is set to take centre stage this week.
On Tuesday, the national assembly and the national council of provinces will consider the report, which is likely to be adopted. This will enable parliament to start the lengthy process to amend the constitution.
This follows the Cape Town high court’s dismissal of an interdict application by AfriForum on Friday, which sought to prevent parliament from considering the committee’s report. In November, the committee adopted the report, which recommends that section 25 of the constitution be amended to make it explicitly clear that expropriation of land without compensation by the state in the public interest can take place.
On the same day, axed SA Revenue Service (Sars) commissioner Tom Moyane heads to the Pretoria high court in an attempt to block President Cyril Ramaphosa from appointing his successor. Moyane also wants the court to stop the Sars commission of inquiry, chaired by retired judge Robert Nugent, from submitting its final report to Ramaphosa. Nugent has applied for an extension of the November 30 deadline to submit his final report. He said in his court papers he would not be in a position to submit his final report until at least December 5. Ramaphosa has granted him an extension to December 14.
The state capture inquiry is expected to resume on Tuesday following weeks of explosive evidence by former high-ranking public officials and office bearers. The commission, chaired by deputy chief justice Raymond Zondo, will pronounce on the return of former deputy finance minister Mcebisi Jonas and former ANC MP Vytjie Mentor to the witness stand, this time to be cross-examined on testimony given at the commission. Former president Jacob Zuma’s son, Duduzane, successfully applied to cross-examine Jonas after he was implicated in the former deputy minister’s statements. Jonas and Mentor’s appearances were postponed in November.
Also this week, trade union federation Cosatu will meet with Ramaphosa, and has said it will call on the ANC to “rein in” finance minister Tito Mboweni. The federation is unhappy with Mboweni’s public statements on the fate of troubled state-owned companies, which it said suggests he is in favour of their privatisation. Cosatu, which is against the partial or complete privatisation of the entities, has said Mboweni’s sentiments are not in line with ANC policies and resolutions and he is behaving like an “incorrigible, unaccountable delinquent”.
This week also marks parliament’s last sittings before recess. Deputy President David Mabuza is scheduled to appear before the national assembly on Thursday to respond to questions on a number of issues. Meanwhile, the standing committee on public accounts will hold a hearing on the Treasury’s integrated financial management forensic report.
The committee is looking into the system, on which the government has spent R1.7bn to modernise and integrate human resource and financial management across national and provincial government.