News24

Botswana Bushmen get water rights

2011-01-27 22:25

Gaborone - An appeals court in Botswana has ruled that indigenous dwellers in one of the driest parts of the world can now drill wells for water.

The Botswana Court of Appeals on Thursday said the Bushmen people were entitled to excavate new wells and could use a well already established on their traditional land in the Kalahari Game Reserve.

This decision overturns a ruling in July that took away the Bushmen people's rights to drill.

In 2006, another court allowed the Bushmen to return to desert-like homelands where diamond mining claims and a new luxury tourist lodge led to their eviction by the government.

Hundreds of Bushmen, or Basarwa, returned and their leaders protested that they were denied water to drive them away again.

Comments
  • cervezab - 2011-01-27 23:36

    Finally, it was a sad debacle where luxury lodges and mines were allowed to drill for water yet the bushmen were denied. I just hope some rich capitalist pic don't try to bribe someone again to exchange human life for financial gain

      phemod - 2011-01-28 11:38

      you express little knowledge on the matter. no mining or luxury hotels are in place at the moment. i agree denying the basarwa a right to water was poor on our government. but if the land proves rich in minerals (diamond) then we certainly are going to mine them and communities will be relocated. it has happened in the past where the bakgalagadi (for the Jwaneng mine) and the Bangwato (for the orapa and Letlhakane mines) were relocated to make way for mining. Our economy is totally reliant on diamond revenue (70% of our GDP)so we need this to develop the country, botswana is what it is because of diamong mining. not that we dont care about the basarwa but our natural resources need to benefit the whole nation. the government has an obligation to rpovide for and take care of all its citizens basarwa included so decisions are made in the best interest of the country. Its easy for foreigners and westerners to sit in their high chairs and tell us what to do and not so that we depend on their handouts for ever. the buck stops with the botswana governemnt which has 2 million people to take care of

  • ludlowdj - 2011-01-28 07:24

    Since when does any government have the right to decide who and where people are allowed to dig wells for water. Just another example of the rich riding rough rod over the poor

      Chibuli - 2011-01-28 08:52

      Exactly! And as Dewet states below, the bushmen are the original inhabitants of Southern Africa and were displaced by the "imperialist" Negroid tribes from Central Africa and later the white colonial settlers from Europe. Preservation of the Khoisan/Sanoid cultures is of paramount importance as they are being systematically forced into extinction by the marauders. Land restitution takes on a whole new meaning, doesn't it?

      Cire - 2011-01-28 11:22

      @Chibuli - absolutely correct! Whites and Blacks are just dogs struglling over a bone stolen from the bushmen (San, if you prefer!) The whole of Southern Africa is THEIR LAND.

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