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South Africa To Draw Cautious Lessons From Zim’s Land Reform

South African government will be cautious on the land issue but will not succumb to pressure from superpowers to conduct land expropriation without compensation, African National Congress (ANC) MP Joseph Maswanganyi said yesterday during a parliament session.

He said although there were positives from Zimbabwe’s controversial land reform which saw white farmers being violently driven out of their farms without compensation, there should be cautious steps if South Africa is to follow in that direction.

“Some years ago, the people of Zimbabwe under the leadership of President Robert Mugabe decided to advance with their land reform programme,” he said.

“This has raised a number of responses from around the world with some of the Western forces putting Zimbabwe under difficult circumstances through sanctions.

“As South Africans, we would never be threatened by any force to expropriate land without compensation. We will learn from the mistakes and the good that the Zimbabweans have done.”

He said the land redistribution exercise was responsible for the sanctions which were imposed on the country and has seen an economic decline which has spun for close to 20 years.

He said SADC and AU should continue to vociferously push for the unconditional lifting of sanctions on Zimbabwe.

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“Today we join the people of Zimbabwe under President Emmerson Mnangagwa to call for the lifting of sanctions on Zimbabwe which have done more harm to the people and the economy of Zimbabwe,” Maswanganyi said.

“Our approach to this again would be guided by our principle that the problems of Zimbabwe will be solved by Zimbabweans themselves and through multilateral platforms like SADC and the African Union,” he said.

Last month, Zimbabwe held an anti-sanctions march meant to send a message to the US government and European Union (EU) to lift the restrictions on Zimbabwe.

Meanwhile, the South African Parliament yesterday paid tribute to the former president, the late Robert Mugabe for standing resolute in defence of Pan-Africanism.

The tribute was led by Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) leader, Julius Malema.

“President Mugabe was a devoted pan-Africanist, principled revolutionary with an unwavering commitment to the cause of the liberation of Africa and development of the African continent in a manner that puts African people first,” he said.

“We acknowledge that he stands head and shoulders above the rest in his commitment to resolving the timeless question of the return of the African land back to African people, of the use of the African wealth for the development of Africa,” Malema added.

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Mugabe died in September this year aged 95 and is largely blamed for ruining the progression of the once-promising Zimbabwe due to his unpopular policies.

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Multi-award winning journalist/photojournalist with keen interests in politics, youth, child rights, women and development issues. Follow Lovejoy On Twitter @L_JayMut

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