CAPE TOWN, November 30 – The high court in Cape Town on Friday dismissed an application by civic organisation AfriForum to interdict Parliament from debating and voting on a report recommending that the Constitution be amended to explicitly provide for land expropriation without compensation.
“The relief sought by the applicants…is dismissed,” Judge Vincent Saldanha said, adding reasons would be provided at a later stage.
This means the report by the constitutional review committee will be tabled in the National Assembly on Tuesday next week for MPs to debate. It will then be put to a vote in the House.
Reacting to the ruling, AfriForum CEO Kallie Kriel said it was not the end of its opposition to the constitutional amendment “but merely the beginning of a long and lengthy battle” as it simply meant that the case would not be heard on an urgent basis.
“AfriForum, therefore, undertakes to use every possible mechanism at its disposal to, in the interest of everyone in the country, fight to the bitter end against the undermining of property rights.”
Parliament said it was vindicated by the court’s decision as it reaffirmed the legislature’s constitutional right to conduct its business without undue interference.
“As Parliament consistently stressed, AfriForum’s application was ill-advised, abusive to the court processes, premature and intended to gag both Parliament and thousands of South Africans who expressed their views through the public participation process,” it added in a statement.
– African News Agency (ANA)