No ‘Fast Forward’ for SA Architects
The best and most progressive Spatial Planning and Land Use legislation will depend on all the role players taking part in the process, not just the few. The Chairperson of the Portfolio Committee on Rural Development and Land Reform, Mr Stone Sizani informed all who took part in the public hearings on the Spatial Planning and Land Use Management Bill (SPLUMB) this week that the process would be steady and inclusive.
“We are not going to ‘fast forward’ this Bill,” he told presenters at the hearings. “The Spatial Planning and Land Use Management Bill (SPLUMB), is going to follow the same route that other Bills follow.”
Mr Sizani said there was wide consultation on SPLUMB, as the Bill is commonly referred to, before it was sent to Parliament.
The organisations that presented their views included Royal Bafokeng Nation (RBN) and the Legal Resources Centre. Both organisations appealed to the Committee to ensure that compliance with zoning legislation applied to all companies and individual developers.
Mr Mathew van Der Want of Royal Bafokeng Nation said mining companies played a significant role in the South African economy, but they should adhere to spatial planning and land use legislation in the same way as other companies.
“Mining companies should not be exempted from compliance as happened in the past,” he said. One of the objectives of the Bill was to install an effective and comprehensive system of spatial planning and land use management for the whole of the Republic of South Africa, and this entailed clear planning requirements.
The National Director of Legal Resources Centre (LRC) Ms Janet Love said planning was also a vehicle for cooperative governance. “If the planning is not right, the national government can forget about creating cooperative governance in South Africa. It (cooperative governance) will remain a theoretical issue in this country,” Ms Love said.
She said correct planning also demanded respect for indigenous or customary law. If the indigenous laws of rural communities were “taken for granted or considered backward” no good planning legislation would be achieved. Planning legislation had to take into consideration “all those who should be consulted. Those immediate communities should be consulted before any zoning can be done,” she said.
“Correct planning will bring rural communities into
the mainstream economy. An unplanned rural sprawl worsens the living conditions
of the rural people and makes delivery of services to them even more difficult,”
Ms Love added.
by MAVA LUKANI