GaMatlala rewrites past

Selby Makgotho

Selby Makgotho

The community of GaMatlala- a-thaba, west of Polokwane, wants its dignity restored and the truth told about 50 of its people who were forcefully removed from their ancestral land.

GaMatlala was a hotbed of political activism during the apartheid era and hundreds of villagers were sent to the Transkei and Ciskei in the Eastern Cape, Empangeni in KwaZulu-Natal, Piet Retief in Mpumalanga and other parts of South Africa .

Godfrey Molekwa, organiser of the move to set the record straight, yesterday told Sowetan the first major event was scheduled for Sunday to outline the exiles' history.

Former traditional leader of the Matlala tribe, Makoena Matlala, was one of those banished to King William's Town in the Eastern Cape.

Molekwa said President Thabo Mbeki had expressed keen interest in the project and has assigned the South African Democracy Education Trust to include the history of GaMatlala in the book it is compiling.