- AfriForum has accused the government of using land expropriation as a means to hand mineral resources such as coal to the Chinese government and its companies
- The civil rights and lobbying group claims to have proof of collusion between the South African and Chinese governments
- AfriForum claims the government is using a trial run of land expropriation to gain control of rich coal reserves which will be mined and used by Chinese companies in a new economic zone in Limpopo
AfriForum has accused the government of using land expropriation as a means to hand mineral resources to the Chinese government and Chinese companies which are largely owned by China's communist state. The civil rights group claims it has irrefutable proof of collusion between South African and Chinese governments.
AfriForum claims the government is using land expropriation without compensation to gain control of rich coal reserves in Limpopo. These reserves will be mined by Chinese companies and then be used in the just-announced Musina-Makhado Special Economic Zone.
On Monday, the government announced it had signed a deal with the Chinese government which would see Chinese companies (which are largely government-owned) invest $10 billion in the Musina-Makhado Special Economic Zone.
Briefly.co.za gathered that the plans for the economic zone include construction and operation of a coal power plant and various ferrous-metal processing plants.
Thesouthafrican.com reported that AfriForum recently released a list which it claimed contained the details of 139 farms and properties which the government would target for land expropriation without compensation in what amounts to a trial run for the introduction of the policy as a law.
AfriForum claims farms belonging to Akkerland Boerdery which are situated just outside of Musina have been targeted because the government desperately wants and needs access to the coal reserves which lie under the ground.
The coal reserves are according to AfriForum, a critical part of the deal which was struck between South Africa and China to establish the economic zone.
Eyewitness News reported that exploration had proved that the coal reserves are suitable for power generation and use in metal processing plants.
The government has started expropriation proceedings against Akkerland which would, if successful, hand the land to the state for just 10% of its real value.
AfriForum has joined Akkerland in its legal challenge of the government’s plan to expropriate the farms in Limpopo.
The owners of Akkerland were served with an ejection letter by the Department of Rural Affairs and Land Reform at the end of March. The order gave the owners seven days to vacate the properties in question. The department was accused of playing dirty because the court order gave the owners seven days but the notice was served on a Friday leading into a long weekend.
The owners claimed this caused a certain amount of havoc as they had to scramble to file the correct papers in court before the deadline expired.
Akkerland has since obtained a repeal of the original ejection order but is now engaged in a bitter legal battle with the department.
AfriForum said it was supporting Akkerland to protect the rights of farmers and to protect the natural resources of the country from being exploited by the Chinese.
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