Land question is more history than just a grab all situation

2018-05-17 06:00

Thobile Ndzube’s My Take (Umhlaba: Masses Should Benefit, May 10 2018) refers.

The issue demands an ongoing debate. Well, the writer is quite right the land debate has been on-going, and I salute the PAC for being such loyalists and standing by their word until now. Izwe lethu!

However, let us rewind to 1994 when we, as excited and joyful South Africans, did the unthinkable and forgave people who did not ask for forgiveness. Iqale apho inkathazo!

Now I’m not gonna dwell on that part and how our dear Honourable Tata Madiba sold us out.

I’m an African child of the soil, I don’t speak ill of the dead.

Back to the land debate, I would like to assume that every black child knows how our land was taken away from us, as well as the history of Jan van Riebeeck arriving here 6 April 1652.

We all know how his wife, Maria De La Quelleri, was so fascinated by the Cape she started planting so many trees in the southern suburbs, specifically the Rondebosch/Newlands areas.

It seems she had a hobby, and I dare not dwell onto the results of that gardening exercise to this beautiful city for fear of condoning colonialism.

So it amazes me how the South African white cries “Genocide!” when the law of land expropriation without compensation is passed in parliament.

And choose to travel as far as the US to lobby assistance against Julius Malema.

Because, in all fairness, The Land Is Ours and they know this. Our forefathers died fighting against this injustice.

The history of Dilima, whose remains were found at Robben Island and were later collected by surviving family members a few years ago, is archived at the national library.

Dilima fought Boers, never giving them a chance for peace, as he was notorious for attacking even on Christmas day, something that really annoyed the colonisers.

A white South African by the name Graeme Coddington writes about this land issue and in addressing his fellow white race he says, and I quote: “My white South African friends who wish to comment on this decision of parliament to investigate possibly changing the constitution to expedite land expropriation without compensation, please remember that this is not the first time the SA government has taken land without paying for it.

In fact, it’s at least the fifteenth time the government of SA has passed laws to take land.

“So, please do us a favour, if your ancestors did not comment about the previous fifteen times the government took land (and I’m guessing, like mine, they did not), then right now would be a good time to be quiet for a bit and listen. Not forever, just for a bit. And then calmly contribute to the conversation over the next few weeks and months in an attempt to find a solution that helps everyone.”

“Also, before you comment on the issue, please read the preamble of the motion put to Parliament this week and tell us how you respond to the fact that the government land audit has found that less than 7% of land in SA is owned by private black individuals.

No seriously, please start any comments on this issue with your thoughts and feelings on that statistic.”

Basically, Graeme is telling his friends to “Shut up!” And listen for a change.

We need to be mindful of the fact that, as South Africans, we need to educate ourselves further on the issue of land, as this is going to be one war that does not require your good command of English, but academic education and knowledge so vast we are able to come up with the “How” to ensure that every individual benefits.

We need to engage in robust debates and it is not going to be easy, however, with self learning facts around the land debate, one would do themselves a huge favour just by knowing.

Belinda NOXOLO DiliIMA Langa lANGA

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