Expropriation of land without compensation put to the test in Ekurhuleni

Executive mayor of Ekurhuleni, Mzwandile Masina.

The Ekurhuleni Council on September 27 resolved to initiate the process of land expropriation without compensation within the Ekurhuleni metro.

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Executive mayor, councilor Mzwandile Masina announced plans to initiate expropriation without compensation in order to test Section 25 of the Constitution.

“It is important to note that expropriation can never be a means to an end, but it has to inherently serve a particular purpose of interest.”

“To ensure strict compliance to Section 25 of the constitution, the first step was to exclude any hint to arbitrariness and/or unreasonableness in our action, including assessment of the possibility of an alternative property or availability of less invasive mean,” said Masina.

According to Masina, the Housing Act read in the context and in line with the Bill of Rights, has detailed responsibilities of municipalities in respect of making housing opportunities accessible.

These rights place certain responsibilities on the metro, in respect of which land and access to housing are central.

The Constitution enjoins the state to ensure progressive realisation of these rights.

“The metro has, since its inception, been putting an effort to increase access to housing by, inter alia, purchasing available land for housing purposes,” said Masina.

According to Masina, the metro has identified four occupied properties, whose owners have essentially relinquished their property ownership rights and responsibilities.

The metro plans to immediately develop and establish townships on these pieces of land.

Masina said: “We want the metro to be at the forefront of land reform in Gauteng.”

“We were the first to launch the Rapid Land Release Programme, and now we want to be the first metro in

Gauteng to expropriate land without compensation for the purposes of human settlement.”

“Our resolve on this matter is guided by our commitment to serving the people of Ekurhuleni.”

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  AUTHOR
Khutso Maphatsoe
Journalist

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