SPYL Blasts NAU on Land Reform

The successful Zimbabwe-style land reform option remains on the table, according to the Swapo Party Youth League (SPYL). The SPYL said this in response to the Namibia Agricultural Union’s (NAU) glowing praise of what Prime Minister Dr Hage Geingob said about land reform in Namibia while on a visit to China.

The SPYL says the NAU misinterpreted Geingob’s comments that the government has been patient and waiting for the settlers to voluntarily surrender land to avoid the Zimbabwe-style land reform.

“It can never be correct, as suggested by the NAU that we are suggesting that land must remain with the settlers. The NAU, in its attempt to claim a false victory, seeks to suggest that there is something wrong with the successful Zimbabwe-style land reform,” said the SPYL’s spokesperson Job Amupanda in a statement.

The SPYL says in Zimbabwe around 4 000 formerly white farms are now occupied by 170 000 black families. Today these families are engaged in serious production for both domestic and external consumption. This has prompted the World Bank to pronounce that Zimbabwe’s total agriculture production has almost returned to the average of the 1990s, the decade before land reform, and that black farmers are reaching the production level of the former white farmers. “The very same NAU maintains a deliberate silence on matters that concern our people such as poverty, inequality and unemployment but gets vocal when land and means of production are mentioned. NAU maintains the same silence and never congratulates government on achievements such as free education and infrastructural development. The Swapo Party policy posture on land reform is clear,” the statement of the SPYL said, adding that land reform and the weaknesses of the willing buyer-willing seller policy are dealt with in resolutions and declarations of the Swapo Party Congress and Policy Conference of 2012. “We are busy answering this question by consolidating the discussion paper on the land question that comes after the recent successful Young Professionals lecture of the SPYL. After the discussion paper on the land question is concluded and released with its recommendations endorsed by our structures, we will persuade the Swapo Party leadership to endorse our discussion document on the land question, call for a national referendum on land, and agitate and convince Parliament to enact a law based on the outcome of the referendum,” the statement said, adding that the NAU should know that “years of strawberry policy will soon come to an end. Radical land reform will happen whether in the next five years or the next 15 years.”

Source : New Era