Khoisan activists taken to cop station

Khoi activists, from left, Shane Plaaitjies, Chief Khoisan SA, Brendon Billings and MPL Christian Martin are at the Union Buildings in Pretoria after walking from the Eastern Cape
Picture: Supplied

Following a 1 200km walk from Port Elizabeth to Pretoria’s iconic Union Buildings, Chief Khoisan SA along with MPL Christian Martin and two others were removed by police from the foyer of the building on Monday night.

The four men, clad in their traditional attire, were sitting inside the building in the hope of making an appointment with either President Jacob Zuma or his deputy, Cyril Ramaphosa, to hand over their memorandum of demands and grievances.

They allege they received harsh treatment which ultimately led to them being removed, put in the back of a police van and taken to the Sunnyside Police Station where they spent the night before returning to the open field at the Union Buildings yesterday morning.

Chief Khoisan SA said they were removed after 11pm but no case was opened against them.

“It is now day 13 and no one has addressed us yet. I find it very sad that we have been here, as the first people of the nation, and have been ignored. We are prepared to wait no matter how long it takes.”

Their demands include the community being officially recognised as the first citizens of the country and for Khoisan to become an official language.

Pretoria police spokesman Captain Daniel Mavimbela said: “The intervention from the Sunnyside police was purely humanitarian.

“With their consent, four Khoisan men, including their chief, were given shelter at the police station.

“The men were in no way arrested or detained.”

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