#Taken in 1986 after the death of Samora Machel - A Luta Continua.
Aluta Continua is a Portuguese (not Afrikaans) saying meaning “The struggle continues”. The correct wording of the phrase is actually “A luta continua, vitória é certa” meaning, “The struggle continues, victory is certain”. However, it has been corrupted over the years and is more likely to be written: “Aluta Continua, Victoria Acerta”.
“There’s a train that comes from Namibia and Angola. There’s a train that comes from Zimbabwe and Zambia. There’s a train that comes from Malawi , from Mozambique and Swaziland. There’s a train that comes from Botswana ,from Lesotho and the whole hintherland of Southern Africa. And this train carries in it young and old men of African origin who come and work on conscription , contracts in the gold and mineral mines of of Johannesburg and its surrounding metropoli. Deep deep down in the underbelly of the earth where they are digging and drilling for that mighty shiny evasive stone or when they dish mish mash mush food into their iron plates or their iron shovel. Or when they think about their loved ones as they are sitting in their funky filthy flea ridden barracks. They think about their lands and herds that were taken away from them. And when they hear that chu chu train screaming and puffing in the far of horizan. They always curse and cuss the coal train that brought them to Johannesburg ‘STIMELA!’ ”
#I had a conversation with a Zambian friend of mine and we were discussing the well kept secret of the inheritence of migrant labour in Southern Africa. As the monologue by Hugh Masekela illustrate the mining industry gave birth to mass migration by men to industralised mining centres. Not only man from the rural landscapes of South Africa but in the surrounding countries as well. What was left behind was women being head of their household , and when they too migrated for labour, the elders and children where left behind fend and raise for themselves.Sadly the “conventional" family system was and still is broken , a cycle continues.
This book, spanning the 150 years since the arrival of the first Indian indentured labourers in Natal, illustrates the power of photographs. Its lens is wide as it captures the social, the economic, the political, and the religious. It invites readers to see beyond images to the human experience in the photographs.
While the focus is broad, this collection of over 700 photographs does not ignore life’s minutiae. The strength of the book lies in the interweaving of big events with the everyday as the photographs are brought to life with well researched vignettes that provide context and meaning. As it explores the many lives of Indian South Africans, this collection challenges the partitioning of identity, while acknowledging its pull and protective presence.
The story is a beguiling one that will provoke feelings of nostalgia, dissonance and intrigue, anger and hilarity, as the pages peel back history to reveal stories of passion and pain, the ordinary and the courageous.
‘MANY LIVES: 150 years of being Indian in South Africa’ is a book by Goolam Vahed, Ashwin Desai and Thembisa Waetjen. It is published by Shuter (2010).
A vast transfrontier park of almost 450 000 square kilometres, stretching over five Southern African countries and connecting 36 national parks and other managed areas, has been signed into being.The biggest conservation effort ever, it includes some of the most breathtaking protected areas on the planet, and will stretch over parts of Angola, Botswana, Namibia, Zambia and Zimbabwe.Once fully operational it will be roughly the size of Sweden.The Kavango Zambezi Transfrontier Conservation Area was legally established on the last day of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) conference held in Luanda, Angola, in August 2011. The signing followed a feasibility study initiated by the five participants in 2006.The implementation of the conservancy is overseen by the Peace Parks Foundation, with the help of integrated development plans (IDPs) to ensure that the process unfolds smoothly. Zimbabwe and Zambia have completed their IDPs, while Angola’s is nearing completion.IDPs for Namibia and Botswana will get underway before the end of 2011.“It’s the largest protected tourism zone in the world,” an official from the 15-nation SADC announced at the time of signing the deal.