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South Africa: Land reform plans scrapped but new bill is on way instead

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South Africa has withdrawn a farm expropriation bill just days after President Donald Trump tweeted he was closely watching the situation – but the bill is set to be replaced by a new act given the government more powers.

The African National Congress (ANC) said that the bill which would have the power to take land away from white farmers to rebalance racial disparities needed to have further consideration.

The bill has been going through parliament for the last two years.

Nonceba Mhlauli, a spokeswoman for the ANC’s chief whip, said: “The bill in its current form would need to be re-considered in light of the process of reviewing Section 25 of the constitution for the expropriation of land without compensation.

“Were the bill to be re-introduced, it would contain a clause or clauses reflecting expropriation of land without compensation if that is the way that South Africans have chosen to go.”

The government is trying to change the status quo where the white community who only make up eight percent of the populations own 72 percent of the farms.

Many fear the change with do nothing to change concerns from white farmers.

Humphrey Mmemezi, committee chairperson of the Portfolio Committee on Public Works who resolved to withdraw the bill, said: “The committee has observed that the work of the Joint Constitutional Review Committee is now approaching a conclusion and the recommendations are soon to be made available.

Read Also: Saudi Arabia rejects 27,000 sheep and goats from Somalia

“Once concluded, before the end of September, [this] will lead to new parliamentary processes, including legislative processes, and new directions should become clearer before the end of 2018.

“The committee is aware that this process will lead to the minister of public works reintroducing a revised Expropriation Bill that will possibly include clauses that deal with expropriation of land without compensation.

“That bill will give more clarity on how South Africans should deal with the land question and the property issues that today still favour the minority at the expense of the majority of South Africans, in particular black people.”

Theresa May had pledged her support for the land reform in South Africa but she has emphasised the need to conduct farm appropriations in a “legal and fair way”.
Mrs May has said yesterday: ”The UK has for some time now supported land reform.

“Land reform that is legal, that is transparent, that is generated through a democratic process.

Metro

Malian migrants, including children, die as makeshift Europe-bound boat capsizes in Libya

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Twenty-two Malian migrants including three children, have been killed when their makeshift Europe-bound boat capsized in the Mediterranean Sea off the coast of Libya, the United Nations as well as the Malian government have confirmed on Wednesday.

The UN’s International Organization for Migration (IOM), also confirmed that 61 other migrants were rescued and taken to a detention centre in Libya.

The Ministry of Malians Abroad, in a statement, said the people who died were part of a group of 83 mostly Malian nationals who were stuck on a distressed vessel since June 22.

The IOM, in statement by its spokeswoman Safa Msehli, said the rescued victims were brought back to shore with the help of the Libyan coastguard after nine days at sea, adding that the “cause of death for the 22 people was drowning and dehydration.”

Msehli also said some of the survivors were in very poor health and had to be taken to hospital by the IOM.

“The remaining migrants were taken to al-Maya detention centre” in Libya, she said.

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Monkeypox: WHO records over 6,000 cases in 58 countries in recent outbreak

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According to the World Health Organization, more than 6,000 cases of monkeypox have now been reported from 58 countries in the current outbreak.

The United Nations agency is yet to decide declaring the outbreak a global health emergency, the WHO’s highest level of alert.

Its committee reconvene a meeting in July 18 to decide or sooner.

Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus told a virtual news conference from Geneva.

Monkeypox, a disease that was once largely restricted to Africa, has also penetrated Europe and North America in its recent spread with more than 100 cases recorded outside Africa.

The UN committee meeting in June 27 decided that the disease was not yet a health emergency. There have recently been reported cases in other African countries like Nigeria and Morocco.

“I continue to be concerned by the scale and spread of the virus across the world,” Tedros said, adding that a lack of testing meant that there were likely many more cases going unreported.

Until recently, monkeypox had been a disease that was once largely restricted to Africa, but has gradually penetrating Europe and North America in its recent outbreak.

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