- Cope leader Mosiuoa Lekota believes the government shouldn’t take the Zulu King’s land away from him but should allow him to give the land to his people
- This comes after growing tensions between the ANC-led government and King Goodwill Zwelithini about the future of the Ingonyama Trust
- Lekota said the Constitution had not failed to deliver land reform, but rather the ANC had failed to properly implement the Constitution
The leader of the Congress of the People (Cope) Mosiuoa Lekota believes the ANC-led government is misguided in its attempt to disband the Ingonyama Trust. Lekota said the government should not take the Zulu monarch’s land away, but should rather allow the King to give the land to his people.
Lekota waded into the politically charged debate about the future of the Ingonyama Trust which is administered by King Goodwill Zwelithini. Tensions have risen between the ANC led government and the king in recent weeks.
This comes after a delegation led by former president Kgalema Motlanthe found that the Ingonyama Trust did not conform to the government’s own land policy proposals and criticised the trust because it did not allow those living on the land to legally own the land.
Briefly.co.za gathered that the delegation suggested that the trust, which lists King Zwelithini as its sole trustee, should be disbanded and all the land owned by it transferred to government ownership.
Lekota said the government should give Zwelithini the title deeds to the land and ask him the following:
“We must then say to him‚ ‘Here are your people who live in your land. We request that you give each person the piece of land that they live on. With your permission‚ let us give these people title deeds.”
TimesLive.co.za reported that the Cope leader said when an individual had the title deed to their land or property they were free to develop that land and would be able to benefit from the land in a very real and tangible economically measurable way.
Lekota has been a vocal critic of the land expropriation without compensation proposal and has on numerous occasions vowed to fight the proposed amendment to the Constitution. He has defended the Constitution and the rights of current land owners.
Lekota's views has brought him into direct confrontation with EFF leader Julius Malema. The pair had to be separated by security officials at a recent hearing after they got involved in a heated debate.
Malema has accused Lekota of being ashamed of being black and loving white people.
Lekota lashed out at the ANC and said the Constitution had not failed the people of South Africa, but rather the ruling party had failed in its mandate to fulfil the promise of the Constitution.
Briefly.co.za earlier reported that Lekota also defended the land rights of white people in South Africa. He said white people had paid for their land and if the government wanted that land for any reason it should pay a fair price for the land.
Lekota said while it was true that the apartheid government had taken land from black people during its brutal regime, it was a myth that white people had received land for free from the apartheid government.
He pointed out that the apartheid government functioned as a capitalist state and was not in the habit of giving land away for free.
Lekota added that the Constitution as it was currently written made provisions for the government to expropriate any land which it needed for whatever reason provided that the owner of that land is fairly compensated.
Lekota said the aim of the struggle for freedom and the Constitution was to create a just and equal society for all South Africans.
He said the idea of taking land from one person and giving it to another as a way to correct an injustice was in itself creating another injustice. Lekota said since that land was bought (no matter how wrong the situation under which it was purchased) the only way to get the land back was to pay for it.
Lekota finished by saying the Constitution should be viewed as a roadmap to help South Africa heal and fix the ills from the past.
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