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THE portfolio committee on agriculture, land reform and rural development has welcomed the court decision on the Ingonyama Trust Board (ITB) that its lease agreement with the people was unlawful.
The High Court in Pietermaritzburg ruled on Friday the lease agreement between the ITB and residents falling under its jurisdiction was illegal.
It said it must pay back all the money that had been paid by the people leasing the land.
Ingonyama Trust is the custodian of 3 million hectares of land in KwaZulu-Natal.
In a landmark ruling of the High Court it was found that the lease agreement was unlawful.
Chairperson of the portfolio committee on agriculture, land reform and rural development Mandla Mandela said they welcomed the decision of the High Court.
“We must, in the interest of serving the people, ensure that institutions apply best efforts and uphold good practices of corporate governance and fulfil their founding objectives. The beneficiaries of the ITB land in KwaZulu-Natal, which is about 3 million hectares, are an extension of our participatory democracy and their well-being, development and progress is protected by our Constitution and the Bill of Rights,” said Mandela.
“The Minister and Department of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development must apply themselves in responding to the court ruling and do what is best to address the matters arising therefrom,” he said.
He said they will continue to engage the Ingonyama Trust Board on these matters.