NATIONAL NEWS - The DA has welcomed a recent High Court ruling allowing farmers to transfer water rights, saying this will help them increase crop production and create more rural jobs.
In a statement on Tuesday, Democratic Alliance agriculture spokesman Lourie Bosman said he would write to Water Minister Edna Molewa to recommend she now fast-tracks all water rights transfers in accordance with the judgment.
"For many years, agricultural output has been constrained by farmers' unwillingness to invest in land that was not covered by their water rights.
"This new ruling will enable farmers to trade water rights so as to increase or change the areas they are allowed to irrigate -- opening up new opportunities for fallow land to be used productively.
"It will also help upcoming farmers to gain access to water rights more quickly, and thereby facilitate the land reform process," he said.
In the Gauteng North High Court on Friday last week, Judge James Goodey ruled, in a law suit, in favour of the transfer of water usage rights.
The judgment was described by Agri SA president Johannes Möller as "a notable turning point in the history of water-use rights" in South Africa.
Bosman said the ruling would allow water affairs to expedite the process of transferring water rights.
"More flexible water rights transfers will assist farmers in increasing production and will create new opportunities for job creation and growth in our rural economy," he said.
Source : Sapa
Posted on: 14:33 Tue, 23 August 2011
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