Cadre deployment is collapsing the Land Bank
by Noko Masipa MP – DA Member on the Portfolio Committee on Agriculture, Land Reform & Rural Development

The DA calls on the Minister of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development, Thoko Didiza, to engage the board of the Land Bank, National Treasury and the Minister of Finance, Enoch Godongwana, to forge a feasible path to support farmers. This follows the resignation of two top executives at the Land Bank.

Farmers are feeling very insecure about their loans held at the Bank, and need an urgent update.

The resignation of Land Bank CEO, Ayanda Kanana, and Executive Manager of Agricural Economics and Advisory, Dr Litha Magingxa, hardly comes as a surprise.

The DA has always maintained that financial bailouts are not the solution to the myriad of problems plaguing the Land Bank.

In truth, the Land Bank’s woes stem from the ANC policy of cadre deployment that placed unqualified, incompetent and corrupt people, who failed to understand the role and appreciate the complexity of the capital loan structures of institutions like the Land Bank, in crucial positions.

The DA believes that these resignations demonstrate the lack of confidence in the ANC government’s direction regarding the Bank.

In recent years, the Bank went 18 months without a CEO due to poor succession planning. It received a disclaimer audit opinion by the Auditor-General (AG) for the 2020 financial year, which was followed by a qualified audit in 2021. The Land Bank has also been riddled with corruption which resulted in losses of over R160 million. This past corruption has ruined any possibility of a capital adequacy recovery program.

The resignation of theses senior executives, coupled with adverse audit findings by the AG, and its poor liquidity position is the final nail in the coffin of the Land Bank remaining a vehicle towards supporting transformation in agriculture and land reform.

Under the ANC government, the Land Bank has failed to fulfill its mandate to support, promote and facilitate the development and transformation of the agricultural sector.

The steady demise of the Land Bank clearly demonstrates that the ANC-government’s commitment to land reform is mere lip service. The ANC has shown no intention to use agricultural finance structures to secure and create more jobs, speed land reform and improve food security in the country

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