Survival ‘stands firmly behind
Bushmen’ on anniversary of court victory
12 December 2007
As the Kalahari Bushmen mark the first anniversary of their landmark court
victory tomorrow, Survival has vowed to support them in their continued
struggle to return to their land.
The Bushmen are considering further legal action against the government, which
has failed to implement last year’s High Court ruling, and Survival has said
it will continue to offer support.
Survival’s director Stephen Corry said today, ‘The court ruling was met with
almost universal approval both in Botswana and internationally. It was
applauded as a just and courageous ruling, which would change the landscape of
indigenous rights in Africa forever. It is still that.
‘It was also seen as the way home for the Bushmen and the way out of the
evictions controversy for the government. Tragically, the government has
chosen to reject the opportunity presented by the court, and continues to keep
the Bushmen from their land.
‘The government trucked the Bushmen out of the reserve, but it will not help
them get home. It won’t let them use their water borehole, and it won’t let
them hunt. In fact, it has stepped up its persecution of Bushman hunters: at
least 53 have been arrested in 2007, and many tortured.
‘Meanwhile, the government has backed plans for a massive diamond mine worth
$2.2 billion on the Bushmen’s ancestral land.
‘The state of the evicted Bushmen grows ever more desperate. They have said
they may return to court, and if they do, Survival is ready to help.’
SURVIVAL INTERNATIONAL PRESS RELEASE