Chief Khoisan SA as well as tribesmen Shane Plaatjies and Brendon Billings have set up camp at the Union Buildings.Picture: Oupa Mokoena/ANA

Pretoria - Despite warnings of continuous rain, the Khoisan trio camping at the Union Buildings have vowed to stay put until President Jacob Zuma or Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa had collected their memorandum.
Tribe leader Chief Khoisan SA as well as Shane Plaatjies and Brendon Billings were on Wednesday adamant they would tolerate any weather to deliver the memorandum as mandated by their people.

Passers-by and tourists have been stopping there to take pictures with them.

They walked more than 1000km from Port Elizabeth, arriving in Pretoria last week, where they set up camp on the lawns of the Union Buildings.

Since their arrival, they have been living in two tents waiting to submit their memorandum to Zuma or Ramaphosa.

Chief Khoisan SA said their first demand was for the government to officially recognise the community as the first citizens of the country.

Second, their language, which is emblazoned on the national coat of arms, must be included as an official language, he said.

He said they wanted the land act to be scrapped or amended, as it held them back from owning land.

SA Weather Service forecaster Victoria Nurse warned of more rainfall and thundershowers, with possible flash flooding - but the three said they were not bothered.

“We are expecting continuous rainfall, however there will be a reduction in the amount of rainfall,” she said.

Nurse said city dwellers should today expect showers, rain and thundershowers, with no chance of it clearing this week.

“Clearing completely will not happen in the next seven days, where we expect rainfall of a mostly 30% probability at this stage, mainly in the afternoon,” she said.

Nurse said there was nothing unusual about the rainfall and that the capital city was experiencing an upper air trough system.

However, Chief Khoisan SA vowed to remain at the grounds of the Union Buildings with his tribesmen, and said no weather condition would influence them to decide otherwise.

“We are going to stay here no matter the weather conditions because on our journey here we actually walked in hail; so the rain is nothing to us,” Chief Khoisan SA said.

“Our bodies sort of adapt to different weather conditions so the time we walked there was hail and we didn’t feel anything, and some of the cars you could see were dented but our bodies were still in a good condition.”

He said they normally danced when there was lightning and rain.

“On Tuesday there was lightning so what we normally do when there is lightning we do the ‘rain dance’," he said.

"Through that dance we basically command the creations, things like the wind, the trees; we are the rain makers so we can stop the rain if we want to."

“It is just sad that we had to travel more than 1 000km to see the president of this country, yet when the president has to fly around visiting friends or even going to see a magogo who receives a new house, he has all the time."

“We have been here since last Thursday and still he is not pitching up.

"It is sad that he feels nothing about Khoisan and Bushmen people,” he said.

Chief Khoisan SA said he was not one to back down and he was willing to sacrifice all this time just to be heard.

Pretoria News