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Revised Constitution Eighteenth Amendment Bill Drawn Up

July 12, 2021

Parliament

A revised Draft Constitution Eighteenth Amendment Bill is to be published for public comment.

In a statement, the Ad Hoc Committee to Initiate and Introduce Legislation Amending Section 25 of the Constitution announced that the decision to readvertise the draft bill follows the committee making several amendments to the initial draft bill that was subjected to an extensive public participation process.

The multiparty ad hoc committee tasked with initiating and introducing legislation amending Section 25 of the Constitution to allow for land expropriation without compensation was set up in July 2019.

In 2020, the national assembly re-established the ad hoc committee.

The draft bill was published for comment at the end of 2019.

The aim of the draft bill is to amend the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, 1996, so as to provide that where land and any improvements thereon are expropriated for the purposes of land reform, the amount of compensation payable may be nil; and to provide for matters connected therewith.

The national assembly recently granted the committee an extension to the end of August 2021 to complete its work.

According to the committee chairperson, Dr Mathole Motshekga, the majority of members of the committee agreed to a “three-week process for written comments on the supplementary amendments”.

In the meeting on Friday last week, all the African National Congress (ANC) proposals were carried with favourable votes while the Democratic Alliance, the Economic Freedom Fighters and the Freedom Front Plus voted against the ANC proposals.

Dr Motshekga, in response to concerns that the committee was only mandated to amend specific clauses in Section 25, declared that the “committee’s original mandate includes to amend the entire Section 25 and was not limited to certain sub-sections. The House (National Assembly) gave us a blank cheque and it’s only this committee that limited itself.”