The late Khomani San leader Oom David Kruiper was a true patriot, Northern Cape acting premier Grizelda Cjiekella said on Thursday.
“Oom Dawid Kruiper was a nation builder, cultural pioneer and a leader, a traditional healer and custodian of the indigenous knowledge system of the Khomani San people,” said Cjiekella.
She expressed her condolences at Kruiper’s death on behalf of the Northern Cape government.
Kruiper, 71, died on Wednesday after being admitted to hospital a week before.
Cjiekella said the tribal leader was almost single-handedly responsible for the Khomani San's land claim victory in 1999. It enabled his people to re-settle on 25 hectares of ancestral land, on the periphery of the Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park.
She said Kruiper was a nature conservationist in his own right and instilled in his people respect of and care for natural resources. - Sapa