FAQ: Frequently Asked Questions
In terms of the existing legislation (Agricultural (Commercial) Land Reform Act and its regulations) land tax is based on: rate (0.75%); and the valuation role. The valuation roll expires every five years, the last which expired on 31/03/2013. Further tax can only be levied once a new valuation roll has been approved by the valuation court. It is a well established principle in law that tax cannot be levied retrospectively. Refer to paragraph 8 of the article on the website “The Namibian Constitution vs The Agricultural (Commercial) Land Reform Act No 6 of 1995:“8. There is a case pending before the High Court which is aimed at declaring the Land Tax to be unconstitutional (or otherwise illegal) on various grounds. The matter will be decided in future. In the meantime success has been achieved by obtaining a High Court order suspending the Land Tax until this case is decided”.
To obtain professional legal support where land owners' Constitutional rights are being eroded and take appropriate steps to restore these rights. The Directors do not receive any salary or directors fees.
All farmers who currently see the threat to land ownership rights, who have joined and contributed to the fund. An initial entrance fee of N$1 per hectare is required, further funding will depend on the need to utilise it depending the way the land reform process implemented by government proceeds
If your wish to sell your farm it must first be offered to Government. Once Government makes a counter offer your only choice of remedies available is to either accept such counter offer or proceed to the land tribunal where the purchase price is to be decided upon. Such decision is appealable to the Supreme Court, whose decision is final.
The latest Amendment Act 1 of 2014 has created confusion regarding the position on inheritance. Article 16 of the Namibian Constitution entrenches your right to bequeath your property, this being the Supreme law in Namibia. Any law in conflict with the Constitution is invalid, but will remain valid until set aside by a Court of Law.
In terms of the Agricultural (Commercial) Land Reform Act 6 of 1995 (as amended) you may only offer your farm for sale to the Government, and if Government does not wish to buy your farm, a waiver certificate must be issued in favour of a specific person who must be a previous disadvantaged person most of the time.
Article 16 of the Namibian Constitution, which can never amended not even by a 100% vote in parliament, it being entrenched, states:“All persons shall have the right in any part of Namibia to acquire, own and dispose of all forms of immovable and movable property…. and to bequeth their property to their heirs or legatees….”This is the umbrella and your supreme property right which stands out above any other legislation outside the constitution.In terms of Article 25 of the Constitution, parliament shall not make any law which abolishes or abridges this and other fundamental rights and freedoms conferred by Chapter Three of the Constitution (of which article 16 forms part), and any law or action in contravention thereof shall to the extent of such contravention be invalid. Unfortunately such invalid law or action by government shall be deemed to be valid until corrected or set aside by a Court of Law.
Several amendments have been made over a period of years since Act 6 of 1995 came into operation. With the latest amendment what was left of the free market system enjoyed by land owners in the sale and exchange of farm ownership has now been completely deleted by government. Even the right to public / judicial auctions or sales by executors, deputy sheriffs or trustees of insolvent estates has been taken away – a farm can only be offered to Government and if government does not buy a waiver certificate may be issued in favour of a specific person who must, in most of the cases, be a previous disadvantaged person.
The board of directors and management committee sit and discuss the merits, obtain preliminary advice from a legal team and then accept if finances are available, or keep on hold until finances available. Some matters will be kept on hold until other matters have been completed.
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