Traditional trusteeship system disempowers the minority – Tembeka Ngcukaitobi | News24

Advocate Tembeka Ngcukaitobi SC. (Morapedi Mashashe)

  • Advocate Tembeka Ngcukaitobi says the concentration of land possession by conventional leaders contradicts customized and offers them extra energy than what a standard system offers them.
  • He says the conventional trusteeship system disempowers the minority.
  • When you take a look at the trustees’ powers beneath the Ingonyama Act, it is exceptional,” he said.

Advocate Tembeka Ngcukaitobi says he doesn’t believe the trusteeship system of land ownership benefits the landless majority.

While delivering a lecture at the University of KwaZulu-Natal on Thursday evening, Ngcukaitobi said the concentration of land ownership by the elite minority, including traditional leaders, contradicts custom and gives them more power than a conventional system gives them.

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The traditional trusteeship system under which the Ingonyama Trust and the Royal Bafokeng trusteeships function, among others, function, disempowers the minority, he said. 

He asked: 

When you look at the trustees’ powers under the Ingonyama Act, it’s remarkable. They can lease, sell, kick you out of the land and impose tax [on residents]. Where do they get this power from?

“We have internalised this as customized, which is why I’m reluctant that the Ingonyama Trust system is customary as a result of it’s a trusteeship system primarily based on a colonial idea. It’s the identical even within the Eastern Cape and in all places the place you discover belief land.”

Ngcukaitobi, who has represented communities under the Royal Bafokeng trusteeship on land reform-related matters, said they did not benefit from “their possession of the land.”

“I’m on the lookout for the system that seeks to profit folks from the underside up – not the elites. The system doesn’t appear to be folks centered. It advantages the miners, the chiefs, and politicians. Unless you destroy that community of the state, we will not have a system that advantages the folks,” said Ngcukaitobi. 

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He added that the concentration of land ownership was not only limited to traditional leaders and trusteeships but extended to the few who own the majority of commercial land.

“What black folks want is extra land. They can’t maintain themselves with the land that’s being made out there. This nation has sufficient land to accommodate all of us. The solely motive it is not doing so is that it accommodates the 60 000 households that management 72% of all business land. That is unsustainable wherever on the planet,” he stated.

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