Land Bill is too simplistic

One-size-fits-all is no solution

16 February 2017 | Agriculture

CATHERINE SASMAN

A paper suggests that more thorough consultation is required on the Land Bill instead of it being removed from the public eye.

The Institute for Public Policy Review (IPPR) has suggested a thorough policy review of the entire land reform process before public comments are invited or the Land Bill is tabled in the National Assembly.

It says failure to recognise and analyse some of the complex and subtle differences in land issues across the country has resulted in a ‘one-size-fits-all’ legal framework that appears to be working in some regions, was rejected in others, and was perceived as useless in communal areas that depend on livestock farming.

It says the absence of meaningful consultation in preparation of the land policy and Land Act “reflects political short-term expediency” rather than addressing real land administration and tenure issues and removes policymaking from the public eye.

“Making land policy and laws in Namibia is largely the prerogative of politicians. This risks a situation where political expediency rather than long-term solutions are reflected in policy and legislation,” the IPPR says.

It suggests that the land and agricultural sectors need to be integrated in a comprehensive agrarian reform programme.

THE BILL

The Land Bill tabled in November last year by minister of land reform Utoni Nujoma aims to consolidate and amend the Agricultural (Commercial) Land Reform Act of 1995 and the Communal Land Reform Act of 2002 to ensure that all land in Namibia has the same status.

It provides for a unitary land system where Namibian citizens have equal rights, opportunities and security with regard to land irrespective of where the land is situated.

The IPPR says although the Bill has all the hallmarks of legislation drafted without a comprehensive policy framework, it does introduce a number of positive changes to existing laws.

One of the proposed changes is that procedures to appeal against decisions in traditional authorities and land boards in communal areas have been clarified.

However, the IPPR says, whether aggrieved parties can access the proposed process remains to be seen.

The bill also provides more detail on customary land rights and the modalities of where customary land rights apply.

The IPPR says while it improves the accountability of traditional authorities in general, it does not go far enough to enforce accountability.

In the commercial farming sector the bill seems to weaken the powers and functions of the Land Reform Advisory Commission (LRAC), the IPPR says.

Here, the lands minister is empowered to take decisions on several important aspects of land reform without consulting the LRAC.

The two main farmers’ unions - the Namibia Agricultural Union (NAU) and the Namibia National Farmers Union (NNFU) - would no longer be automatically represented on the LRAC.

Regional resettlement committees are to be established but their powers and functions are not detailed in the bill.

Similar News

 

'We're going nowhere'

5 days ago - 15 April 2019 | Agriculture

Families settled on Farm Okongava No. 72 are again up in arms after minister Utoni Nujoma said in parliament they are there illegally. The families...

Olugodhi omolwa onyama yondjuhwa yaBrazil

5 days ago - 15 April 2019 | Agriculture

YANNA SMITHEhangano lyoSouth African Poultry Association (SAPA) olya kala nokuninga iipalanyolo miikundaneki moNamibia sho tali yambidhidha oshikondo shonyama yondjuhwa yaNamibia nokunyana oondjuhwa dhaBrazil, ndhoka lya...

Feathers fly in chicken war

1 week ago - 12 April 2019 | Agriculture

While international poultry players are battling it out over local market share, Namibian consumers are likely left to carry the burden of higher prices.Of late,...

Swakara auction successful

1 week ago - 10 April 2019 | Agriculture

During the Swakara auction held in Copenhagen, Denmark during March, 100% of the pelts offered were sold.A buyer from Italy bought most of the pelts,...

Drought-parched Botswana struggles to keep cattle culture alive

1 week ago - 10 April 2019 | Agriculture

Sharon Tshipa - Longer and harsher droughts are driving a growing share of Botswana's traditional cattlemen to give up their animals – but Skanki Mokweba...

Rukoro's Ozetu is an 'idle threat'

1 week ago - 09 April 2019 | Agriculture

The Ovaherero Traditional Authority's (OTA's) attempt to dethrone the Meat Corporation of Namibia (Meatco) as the go-to meat processing and marketing entity has been described...

Agribank subsidy doubles

2 weeks ago - 03 April 2019 | Agriculture

Government has more than doubled its budget allocation to Agribank for the 2019/20 financial year. According to the Estimates of Revenue, Income and Expenditure report...

Meatco focuses on farmers

2 weeks ago - 03 April 2019 | Agriculture

Meatco recently held a farmers' liaison meeting in Rundu which focused on building relationships with farmers through engagements.The meeting, which focused on 'How Meatco can...

N$4m in Dare to Care kitty

2 weeks ago - 03 April 2019 | Agriculture

The Dare to Care Fund has collected about N$4 million and can already subsidise 76 000 bags of animal feed at a N$50 subsidy per...

Auction delayed by king's death

2 weeks ago - 03 April 2019 | Agriculture

The death of King Omukwaniilwa Immanuel Kauluma Elifas last week has led to the postponement of the first-ever professional auction that was to have taken...

Latest News

Chinese embassy condemns Andara killing

1 day - 18 April 2019 | Crime

The Chinese embassy has condemned the killing of a 32-year-old man at Andara in Kavango East yesterday. The man was allegedly shot and killed by...

Thought Leadership

2 days ago - 18 April 2019 | Columns

Ashante MannettiIn this fast-paced world we try to juggle a million things at once. Job, family, friends, eating healthy and we know we still need...

Taking charge

2 days ago - 18 April 2019 | People

Mariselle Stofberg Anthea van Heerden decided to take a leap of faith to start her own company in Windhoek.She is the managing director and...

Chained worker 'joke' backfires

2 days ago - 18 April 2019 | Labour

Nic Kruger, the owner of Kruger Trading Enterprises (KTE) Custom Body Work in Windhoek, yesterday vehemently defended the honour of his foreman who had chained...

Gangster's paradise

2 days ago - 18 April 2019 | Government

President Hage Geingob has revealed that 329 red-flagged financial transactions, involving N$9.2 billion, have been referred by the Financial Intelligence Centre (FIC) for further investigation...

ACC probes Katiti

2 days ago - 18 April 2019 | Crime

Augustinus Katiti's attempts to have the Anti-Corruption Commission investigate his successor at the Namibia Institute of Pathology have backfired. The ACC is now investigating Katiti...

Kabajani blossoms at GIPF

2 days ago - 18 April 2019 | People

Michelline Nawatises Annette Likeleli Kabajani is a holder of a bachelor’s degree from the University of Namibia (Unam). She has also attained several management and...

Baking a name for herself!

2 days ago - 18 April 2019 | People

Ester Kamati At the age of 28, Alma Tangi Nakanduungileh is climbing the entrepreneurial ladder and adding sweetness to her clients’ lives. A qualified...

A passion to unlock potential

2 days ago - 18 April 2019 | People

Ester KamatiJustina Mulokoshi is a chartered accountant (CA) at PwC who has big dreams and is constantly on the lookout for new ways to improve...

Load More