Four men walked from Port Elizabeth to the Union Buildings in Pretoria to hand over a memorandum to President Jacob Zuma, demanding the recognition of the Khoisan as the “legitimate first race of South Africa”.
For more than two weeks, they camped in tents on the Union Building lawns.
Then, on Monday night, police took them to the Sunnyside police station.
But yesterday, the men went back to the Union Buildings and again pitched their tents.
For the past four days, they have also been on a hunger strike. Chief Khoisan S.A – his name according to his ID book, said they would not leave until they had met Zuma or Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa and handed over the memorandum.
“Firstly, we demand the government recognise that we are the first nation of South Africa,” said Chief Khoisan S.A.
“Secondly, we demand that our language be on the coat of arms and that Khoekhoegowab be an official language of this country because it is the language we speak, “Thirdly, the land claims date is 1913, but we had land before that time and so this land claims date excludes us.
“We were also told that we are not coloured,” he said.
Legadima Leso, head of communications in the department of cooperative governance and traditional affairs, said the National Khoisan Council (NKC) has indicated the men don’t have a mandate from the council to act on its behalf.
Chief Khoisan S.A said they represented all the different societies under the five main groupings of the Khoisan, which are not recognised by government and the NKC.