Land claimants plan to develop with payout, receive praise

2016-08-24 19:06
Land claims beneficiaries marching in Polokwane to demand a speedy resolution on their claims. (Foto24)

Land claims beneficiaries marching in Polokwane to demand a speedy resolution on their claims. (Foto24)

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Giyani - Land claimants from Dzumeri in Giyani, Limpopo, have been praised for opting to use a portion of their claim payment for development purposes.

The 351 households who received a total of R33 942 397 are Shangaan families moved out of their ancestral lands in areas such as Mpepule, Jokweni and Shamfaan.

The area was earmarked by the apartheid government as the Lebowa homeland for Sotho people, while Shangaan families were removed to Gazankulu.

The community's decision to not simply share out the R10m portion for land value but use it for future development has been greeted with enthusiasm.

At the handover ceremony on Sunday Nozah Samuel Zitha, representing the community said, "as a community we resolved not to touch the R10m portion for the land value and it will be used for development purposes".

He said the community appreciated the efforts of the government in redressing injustices of the past.

The money would be transferred to an accredited legal firm for investment while the communities were to discuss what development was to be made in the area, Zitha explained.

Future generations

Local chief Hosi Divila Wilson Dzumeri said he was pleased his people had decided to develop the area and not just share the money. He said that in the past members of his community did not appreciate the hard work local leaders put in to develop the area.

"There is a time when a local leader bought a car and you gossiped that he had used your money for land claim," said Dzumeri.

He said the same people who alleged that the compensation money had been misused by their leaders are now clapping hands after the land commission released the compensation.

Greater Giyani Mayor Sassie Mathebula commended the community for its decision.

"Give your leaders time to plan, and peddling gossips will not help anyone," she said.

The mayor said the community did the right thing by not sharing the R10m.

"You would finish the money and forget that you received it. But now with proper planning you will be able to do something that will remind the generations to come that there was a time when people were forcibly removed by the government and there came the democratic government that came to give people money as compensation," she said.

Read more on:    land claims

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