Public Works and Infrastructure Minister Sihle Zikalala says his department has released 18 land parcels in KwaZulu-Natal, measuring 533 hectares, for the purpose of accommodating communities, including those displaced by floods in 2022.
Delivering his department’s Budget Vote in Cape Town on Tuesday, Zikalala said in support of the country’s initiative to restore dispossessed land to its rightful owners, 221 land parcels, measuring 148 796ha, have been released from the department’s property portfolio to the Department of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development (DALRRD) for transfer to the approved land claimants.
“At the start of March 2023, four land parcels, measuring 2.8ha, were released to Msunduzi Local Municipality for the purposes of accommodating communities, including those displaced by flooding.
“In support of human settlements development, 44 land parcels, measuring 2 560ha, have been released to the Housing Development Agency to fast track the development of houses within the approved Priority Housing Development Areas,” Zikalala said.
Zikalala said in the 2023/24 financial year, an approximated extent of 6 320ha is earmarked to be released.
“To address the skewed patterns of land ownership, 125 land parcels, measuring 25 549ha, of agricultural land was released from within the department’s portfolio to support subsistence farming and food security.
“An estimated additional 50 land parcels are earmarked to be released within the 2023/24 financial year,” Zikalala said.
Zikalala said the department released significant extents of land in support of the socio-economic programmes of government, with 11 land parcels, measuring 15ha, being released for a variety of South African National Roads Agency (SANRAL) construction projects.
“In addition, 24 land parcels, measuring 117ha, were released for the registration of Eskom servitudes for the construction of generation, transmission and distribution power lines that will provide much needed electricity to communities nationwide. A further six land parcels are being considered for release to Eskom in the 2023/24 financial year.
“The department also processed 27 requests from Eskom for expropriation of private land parcels to enable the construction of key transmission power lines in Limpopo province.
“In addition, a further 49 land parcels, measuring 211ha, from the DPWI portfolio were also released in transferring the custodianship of 19 Land Ports of Entry to the Border Management Authority (BMA) for their integrated management of the country’s border posts,” the Minister said. – SAnews.gov.za
Source: South African Government News Agency