TLU SA did a presentation to the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Public Works and Infrastructure as part of the public participation process of the Expropriation Bill.
The committee received more than 250 000 submissions regarding the Expropriation Bill between 10 December 2020 and 28 February 2021. TLU SA indicated that it wanted to make an oral presentation in this regard as well. This part of the process caused controversy after the committee stated that they would not accept any oral submissions. The decision was later overturned, and presentations are taking place this week. Various organisations, including TLU SA, however, had to take additional steps to receive a slot.
“We emphasised the economic impact of the Expropriation Bill with our presentation. It is basically an attack on private ownership,” says Mr Henry Geldenhuys, die president of TLU SA. “The fact that the questions from the committee had nothing to do with economic prosperity just proves that the decision-makers in government have no clue how to run an economy sustainably.”
In its presentation, TLU SA made it clear that modern agriculture is a business and that farming is not just a job but a calling. Most farmers – who farm successfully and sustainably – view agriculture as a free market economy. Restricting private ownership through expropriation without compensation puts the free market in danger.
“Once again, we pointed out that the country urgently needs foreign investment for the economy to grow,” says Mr Geldenhuys. “But policies like transformation, BEE and now expropriation without compensation goes against economic growth. Which investor of sound mind will invest in a country where his or her assets are in danger?
“The question that should be answered is not if we, COSATU or the Parliament will accept this bill, but if the markets will accept it. The country is on its way to irreversible poverty and all the evils which accompany it.”
With this presentation, TLU SA called on the government to admit to South Africa that its policy of poverty for all will make it much easier for cadres to stuff their own pockets at the country’s expense.