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South Africa: Constitutional Review Committee Impressed by Tolerance Levels of Taung Community at Public Hearings

A delegation of the Joint Constitutional Review Committee today continued with the the North West Province leg of its public hearings into a possible review of section 25 of the Constitution, in Taung.

The committee listened to a number of oral submissions from members of the public who included representatives from farmers’ associations, civic organisations, political parties, traditional leaders and ordinary citizens. The reflection of today’s hearings shows that the majority of the oral submissions made in Taung supported the review of the Constitution, while there were some people who were against the review of the Constitution.

The Co-Chairperson of the committee, Mr Vincent Smith, said: “Once again, the committee has underestimated the interest of the people in this matter. The committee was expecting about 300 people and there were more than 1 000 people today, which shows that South Africans are very keen to have their voices heard.”

The committee applauded the manner in which the people of Taung tolerated each other during today’s hearings. There was complete silence when others spoke against the review of the Constitution and there was no need to ask people not to interrupt a speaker. The committee is impressed by the fact that even the arguments that were made once again show that people have applied their minds. “The engagements are robust as expected because this is a sensitive subject but the committee is comfortable with the quality of the arguments that were presented. We hope that it carries on like this going forward,” said Mr Smith.

Distributed by APO Group on behalf of Republic of South Africa: The Parliament.