22 Years After the Apartheid in South Africa: White Squatter Camp
By Staff Writer
White people were once a ruling and oppressive class in South Africa. As a continuous effort to wipe the apartheid, government are opening more opportunities to black people, as a result many unskilled white people have to live in slums.Now, there are more than 400,000 of them live in poverty.
Under the white supremacist and apartheid regime of South Africa, African white people or Afrikaners are guaranteed housing and employment by government. However, as the regime was abolished in 1994, there are no more privileges for them.
Naomi Tutu, daughter of Desmond Tutu who led the South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission shared her experience in a discussion about racial justice. The discussion was held on Sunday at Christ Church Cathedral in downtown St. Louis. United States.
As reported by St. Louis American, she said, "If we can recognize the potential for darkness in each of us and also recognize the potential for light in each of us, then we move through the world in a very different way. We are not so much in a hurry to find scapegoats for what goes wrong in our communities, and more about what is it that we as a community can do to change how we interact with one another, how our community is structured."
As a continuous effort to wipe out apartheid, government under the ruling African National Congress (ANC) open opportunity for black people, and giving them greater share of the country's economy. However, one of by-product is the unskilled Afrikaners, who once received a privilege under apartheid rules despite their lack of skills.
Losing their privilleges, for the very first time Afrikaners have to compete with black people. As a result, many unskilled white people have to face a reality of life, being ousted and living in slums.
One of them Henrik, in an interview as quoted by Daily Mail, said, 'I'm 49 years old and I'm too old to get a job. I apply and as soon as they see my age, they say "sorry, you are too old."
He added, 'I do what I can to survive, collecting scrap metal or selling second clothes. But it is barely enough."
There are around 80 white squatter township all across South Africa. Metro reported from one white squatter in Munsieville, which was built on the site of an old refuse dump. The white squatter is home to around three hundred Afrikaners, which quarter of them are children.
Afrikaners poverty is a new phenomenon in post apartheid South Africa. Unskilled Afrikaners who once enjoyed privileges in spite of their lack of skills, are unable to receive it under the current government. As a result, they are ousted and forced to live in slums.