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PRESS RELEASE

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Cabinet 2019: Streamlining welcome, but the real work starts now


Agri SA welcomes President Cyril Ramaphosa’s smaller, more streamlined cabinet, but now we need engagement with the new officials about policy issues that farmers face on a daily basis. Agri SA liaises continuously with ministers and senior government officials, and for this reason, a competent and trustworthy cabinet is of utmost importance.

“During the past 25 years, we have seen that a good minister can make a difference between prudent policy, on the one hand, and legislation that hampers economic growth, on the other,” said Dan Kriek, Agri SA President. “We live in uncertain times – with high levels of crime and concerns about property rights. We hope the new cabinet ministers will perform their duties with diligence and wish them the best; however, Agri SA will continue to hold ministers accountable for their actions.”

Agri SA welcomes back Thoko Didiza to agriculture and believes that we will forge strong ties of cooperation. Didiza is widely considered as a senior politician with experience of agriculture and land affairs, who can facilitate policy certainty. The merging of the Department of Agriculture with that of Land Affairs is also welcomed.

“We hope Minister Didiza will strive for long-term partnerships with agriculture to facilitate growth and sustainable transformation within the sector,” said Christo van der Rheede, Agri SA Deputy Executive Director. “Similarly, we hope the new Minister of Public Works, Patricia de Lille, will bring balance to the proposed Expropriation Bill, especially the clause proposing expropriation at zero value. We also hope Minister de Lille will maintain her party’s opposition to expropriation without compensation.”

Agri SA is in favour of the establishment of an Agri Development Fund to assist emerging farmers. Other matters of keen interest to the farming community include drought relief, a professional police service to combat crime effectively and job creation in rural areas.

Agri SA will join hands with the government to protect the interests of every farmer, farm worker and rural communities to promote investment which, in turn, will give rise to growth in the sector. It is only through policy certainty that growth and job creation will be facilitated within the South African agricultural sector and the economy as a whole.

Enquiries:
Christo van der Rheede
Agri SA Deputy Executive Director
(C) 083 380 3492

Dan Kriek
Agri SA President
(C) 082 944 0566