The Constitutional Court challenge against the Traditional and Khoi San Leadership Act (TKLA), that will be heard by the Constitutional Court on Thursday 23rd of February 2023, stands as a stark and vivid reminder of the ongoing betrayal of the liberation struggle which sort to bring an end to the Apartheid Bantustans and authoritarian rule imposed by a colonial system of exclusion and exploitation.
The Act seeks to not only maintain the colonial system of control over black subjects in rural communities, but goes further, by entrenching segregated legal systems and segregated systems of property rights which apply only to marginalized rural communities which are deeply inscribed with a racialized and tribalised legacy.
It is a return to the driving modes of exploitation first introduced by the colonial rush for gold and diamonds.
The passing of the TKLA by the South African Parliament is yet another strand of the web of legal statutes that continues to be woven around the marginalized rural communities as part of the construction of a new era of super exploitation.
The world is currently entering a new phase of mineral extraction that will rival previous scrambles for resources that left a continent like Africa impoverished and underdeveloped, and South Africa, like it was during the gold rush, sits in the heart of one of its target areas.
As the world increasingly moves to “green energy” which requires a whole new set of mineral combinations. The world’s supply system for critical minerals is currently far from able to meet the rising demands stemming from the need for green technologies.
Many of these minerals are located in rural areas.
Clause 24 of the TKLA provides that traditional councils, headed by traditional leaders, can sign deals binding all the people within their apartheid-era tribal jurisdictions without obtaining the consent of those whose land rights are undermined or dispossessed by such deals. The deals may be with mining companies, property developers, tourism ventures, agricultural companies, municipalities or anybody else.
Our own experience has shown that mining houses have allegedly been encouraged by the Department of Mineral Resources to sign multi-billion deals with traditional leaders despite its precarious legal standing.
We are also aware that a number of legal challenges to such precarious mining deals have been working their way through the courts and the state in its collusion with mining houses are trying to head off these legal challenges and to provide a veneer of legality to current processes by the adoption of the TKLA.
We reject this Neo-Colonial attempt to subjugate the people and we have no doubt that the Constitutional Court will affirm the rights of the people and the values of the constitution by rejecting the Act as unconstitutional.
MACUA members will join ARD and LAMOSA at the court on Thursday 23rd of February and we call on all South Africans who stand on the side of Justice to joins at 10h00 outside the Constitutional Court.
For further information please contact:
Meshack Mbangula – MACUA National Coordinator: 074-977-5588
Gilbert Moela – MACUA Media Liaison: 079-777-6175
For additional Comments:
Tokelo Mohlakoane: National Secretary:
Lan Tebogo: National Organiser:
Tshepo Legodi: National Treasurer.