The High Court rejected a legal challenge today brought by a group representing white farmers against President Cyril Ramaphosa's plans for land expropriation without compensation. In its legal challenge, Afriforum questioned the legality of a key parliamentary committee report which recommended a change to the constitution to allow land expropriation without compensation. 'The relief sought by the applicants... is dismissed,' said Judge Vincent Saldanha.
Afriforum, which represents mostly white Afrikaners, alleged that the parliamentary committee had illegally appointed an external service provider to compile the report, and also failed to consider more than 100,000 submissions opposing land expropriation without compensation. Around 65 percent of public submissions were against a change, according to parliamentary officials. Parliament successfully countered Afriforum's case by saying the court action was premature, the committee had not abrogated its powers and all views had been taken into account.
'We welcome the orders handed down today particularly because we've always been of the view that the matter was not urgent,' Lewis Nzimande, co-chair of the constitutional review committee, told reporters outside the High Court in Cape Town. 'They [lawmakers] may set aside the recommendations, they may reject the recommendations but procedurally... we can't just reject the whole work of the committee,' he said. He said the report, just one step in a long process to change the constitution, will probably be debated in both houses of parliament on December 4.
Thereafter, it is expected a new bill proposing the exact changes envisaged to the constitution will go to parliament and further public participation. Only once both houses of parliament approve changes to the constitution will it be sent to Ramaphosa for ratification.
"We must remove all of the filthy white dolls from this place."Durban - Black Centric Forum is on a mission to remove white dolls from toy shelves across the country. The organisation has called on supermarkets to remove the dolls from their shelves as they believed African children who played with white dolls did not embrace themselves as freely as they should. Thapelo Lairi said the campaign was started last year when they approached a major retail store and asked them to remove all white dolls from their toy aisle.
Lairi said BCF believed that African children grew up playing with white dolls and this had a psychological impact on them later on in life. "We find that dolls are more than just toys. There is a psychological impact on a child when they play. These children grow up playing with white dolls and are more loving towards them. Growing up, when these children come into contact with white people, they are more open and accepting of white people than they are of black people," he said.
Lairi said this was not a healthy situation.