Traditional leaders prepare 'very substantial' land claim

A file photograph of King Goodwill Zwelithini. (Gallo)

A file photograph of King Goodwill Zwelithini. (Gallo)

King Goodwill Zwelithini and other traditional leaders are compiling a multibillion-rand land claim that could be South Africa’s largest to date, City Press reported on Sunday.

“From what we have gathered thus far ... [the area] goes outside the boundaries of the [KwaZulu-Natal] province to the Eastern Cape, Free State and part of Mpumulanga,” said Judge Jerome Ngwenya, chair of the Ingonyama Trust, which would help with the claim.

Ngwenya said research was under way to determine the exact extent of the claim. The claim would cover land taken from 1838 onwards.

However, according to land claims legislation only land taken away since 1913 could be claimed, which could still make the claim “very substantial”.

Ngwenya said the claim was not aimed at uprooting people or causing dispossession.

“Where restitution is no longer feasible there must be an alternative in the form of royalties or financial compensation.”

Zwelithini and other traditional leaders have been attending workshops to compile the claim.

The deadline for submission has been set for March 2015. - Sapa

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