Ramaphatle, a settlement between Kumakwane and Thamaga which, in the past, attracted a lot of media attention because of forced evictions, has been declared a village.
The Member of Parliament for the area, Dr John Seakgosing, confirmed this in a kgotla meeting he addressed last Friday. Choosy on how he presented his speech, Dr Seakgosing said: “Recently, when we assessed places under ‘settlement’ category we discovered that there are many of them in this country. Some have populations ranging between 200 and 350. Some have higher numbers, like Ramaphatle. The President sent out a task force to assess these settlements. I am not presenting it since there are rightful authorities who will visit you and inform you that Ramaphatle has been assessed and the government has considered turning it into village. There are still channels to be followed to inform you. I am just highlighting…but you can have peace.”
His presentation came four days after the Councilor for the area, Dux Mafoko, minced no words to inform his electorates that a letter had been written and was being circulated to the effect that Ramaphatle had been declared a village.
He, however, warned that this did not mean that eviction cases still at the High Court had been withdrawn.
“The cases that are pending at the High Court have been affected by this declaration. We are only hopeful that since it has been declared a village maybe those who have been evicted might get the opportunity to be legally allocated plots,” said Mafoko. “You might be aware that the authorities’ reason has been that the soil is fertile and therefore should not be turned into village. We have successfully convinced them that only about nine homesteads are legal but a school has been built here which will be rendered useless if it does not have pupils.”