Villagers accuse royalty of nepotism

ANGRY community members from various villages around GaRakwadu outside Modjadjiskloof in Limpopo have accused the royal family of nepotism.

This after the royal family had established a committee consisting only of family members of the Rakwadu traditional authority to decide on issues relating to the community's land claim process.

According to a community spokesperson, who asked to remain anonymous, the committee was elected following an instruction from the Department of Land Affairs.

The committee's main responsibility would be to manage the farms after they have been handed back to the community.

The community was forcibly removed from the farms by the former apartheid government in 1964.

In 1998 Chief David Nchaupa Mohale lodged a claim with the Department of Land Affairs, a process that is still pending.

The new committee is made up of Chief David Mohale, Molopa Mohale, Dinoka Mohale, Maphela Mohale, Nelly Mohale, Mokibelo Ramawela, Masilo Mokwena, Masilo Malesa, Lekau Ramalepe and Mohlao Sepai.

The source said other members in the committee were appointed to fill the gap since the list of names was to be sent to the Department of Land Affairs.

"We are concerned because the committee, which has been elected on the basis of nepotism, did not meet the required percentage of women and youth representations," the source said.

He also said members of the community, whose land was also taken away, were concerned that the land claims compensation that members of the committee will get from the government might be shared only among committee members.

Some of the concerned community members said they feared that the government might take back the farms if the situation continues in this way.

Meanwhile, Chief Nchaupa Mohale has dismissed claims of nepotism.

He said community members should address issues they are not clear about with the royal family rather than through the media.