Government is now weathering the storm of expropriation of land from some farmers, after it waved the issue to the public on different occasions. While the ANC increasingly hints at land expropriation without compensation, the state is struggling to transfer more than 4 000 farms which have already been bought to their new owners.

The Land Claims Commissioner blames the delay on disputes among land claimants.

Roelf Meyer, former politician and director of non-profit organisation In Transformation Initiative (ITI), said its research division shows government owns 4 323 farming units, which include smallholdings and bigger farms. This land was bought following successful land claims against these properties. However, the farms have never been transferred to their new owners.

According to Meyer, it doesn’t make sense to expropriate more farms if government does not have the capacity to transfer the farms already bought to future farmers.