Black First Land First (BLF) visited Weltervrede farm in Harrismith yesterday, 10 February 2018.
Under the leadership of former MEC for rural development and land reform, Mosebenzi Zwane, a project was piloted to empower women in agriculture in 1997. Out of 206 applicants, Rosa Mphuthi was selected with 16 others. On this project, Mphuthi was granted funds, land and infrastructure to start a farming business.
In 2000, a white farmer illegally occupied the building that was given to Mphuthi as part of the infrastructure from the project.
Ever since then, Mphuthi has approached the department of rural development and land reform and the courts for assistance, but has been sent from from pillar to post.
Mrs Cloete and his husband did not only occupy the main house, which is the business centre for the whole farm, but strategically steal livestock, sabotage their businesses and buys their stock for next to nothing. This results in some beneficiaries abandoning their portions to go back to township life, as Cloete’s cattle graze on their portions. Cloete’s plan is to sabotage the farmers and for him to take over the whole farm. As we speak Mphuthi has opened two cases of malicious damage to property, arson and stock theft against Cloete.
The Cloete’s names does not appear on the title deed of the 17 beneficiaries. The manucipal bills are paid by Mphuthi. As Cloete uses the main house and the store room, Mphuthi has no access to that infrastructure.
White people stole our land and continuously do so. After the 1994 transition, the current government’s mandate is to make redress of the dispossessed and landless black people. How then are white farmers getting land for free whereas there are millions of black people who are landless?
BLF and Mphuthi will report the matter to the Public Protector to seek justice for Mphuthi.
ISSUED BY THE NATIONAL COORDINATING COMMITTEE OF THE BLACK FIRST LAND FIRST MOVEMENT (BLF NCC)
11 February 2018
Black First Land First Mail: [email protected]
BLF Deputy President
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(Deputy National Spokesperson)
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