Cope leader Mosiuoa Lekota is adamant that land expropriation without compensation will lead the country “back to war”.
Lekota said the Economic Freedom Fighters’ ideas about expropriation without compensation were dangerous and that party leader Julius Malema did not understand the consequences of land grabs.
“I am convinced that if South Africans allow the majority in that Parliament to take people’s properties forcefully… then blacks, Indians and whites are going to be killed… in all sections of our population, there will be people who will get killed in this country,” Lekota told reporters in Johannesburg.
“We would be allowing that if we vote for men and women who are going to be adventurous and act recklessly… as some of the speeches I heard there at Unisa. Hence, I said those of us who fought for this Constitution will not allow this… we will resist as best as we can.”
Lekota, a former African National Congress (ANC) cabinet minister who was imprisoned on Robben Island with many other anti-apartheid Struggle stalwarts, sought to clarify his views on the impending land expropriation bill adopted by Parliament. This comes after he was booed on Monday during a debate on land at the University of South Africa’s main campus in Pretoria.
Lekota told the audience that the land was not stolen from black people, but was won through battles and wars.
“You cannot say land was stolen, that is belittling… we fought for our freedom. We fought nine battles, defending ourselves. There is no British army commander who even to this day can claim that he defeated Basotho and reached the top of Thaba Bosiu mountain [in Lesotho].”
He said the government held enough land that it could release to people instead of expropriating land from its owners.
– African News Agency