Extension of Security of Tenure Amendment Bill: SAHRC, Public Protector & SAPS comments
The South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) backed the Extension of Security of Tenure Amendment (ESTA) Bill claiming it would protect farm dwellers and workers rights. It discussed its findings based on enquiries it had held over the past fourteen years into farm dweller rights. The Human Rights Commission recommended training for all role players, as well as the development of an adjudication process to deal with disputes.
The Public Protector said the Bill would contribute to protection of rights of farm dwellers and farm workers although she was concerned that the legal paradigm was fairly adversarial and could undermine social relations which were crucial for sustainable resolution of disputes between parties. There were concerns that functions of the Land Rights Management Board (LRMB) and Land Rights Board Management Committees (LRMC) overlapped.
The South African Police Service (SAPS) noted Section 23(1) of Extension of Security of Tenure Act had said it was an offence to evict an occupier except on the authority of an order of a competent court. The Bill suggested that the government assist with legal representation when farm dwellers faced unlawful eviction.
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