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farmer/garment maker


Ha Koporale




detailed breakdown

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Section 1  Personal and family history.
Section 2  Two girls at school; one son was with LHDA but “now retrenched”. How she met her husband. Elopement; church marriage later.
Section Section 2-3  Life with her husband’s family: similar to life with her own family.
Section 3  Games enjoyed as a girl, especially playing “houses”; boys joined in.
Section 4  Schooling. Details of immediate family (brothers and sisters and their families)
Section Section 4-5  Work activities as a girl: collecting wood and dry dung, hoeing, harvesting, etc. Particularly enjoyed threshing. Use of the river: washing (selves and clothes); swimming. Feelings about home area: “I like the position of the village and farming, as I am a vegetable farmer and I manage to feed my family.”
Section Section 5-6  Agriculture. Has one field of her own and also share-crops. “The harvest is not very good, one seldom gets ten or twenty bags.” No seed rotation but some field rotation (interviewer offers advice).
Section 7  Traditional girls’ songs and dances. Narrator says she “did the dancing part only”. When pressed, she recites part of one song.
Section Section 8-9  Purchase of seeds, which is costly: “it is an unfair price”. Husband – animal farmer; formerly a miner. Keeping sheep and goats.
Section 10  Interviewer probes about witchcraft, but narrator answers: ‘I really don’t know what to say about the issue of witchcraft.’
Section Section 10-12  Dam project; receiving contradictory messages about whether or not they are moving. Reasonably optimistic about move; believes she will still have access to some of her fields. Importance of the road.
Section Section 12-14  Current water supply (from springs); would like to have taps. Suffering from lack of development despite paying money to “the chief with his committees”: “We fail to get the things we would like to have, we have contributed our money for bridges and roads, but all in vain, our money has been misused.” Danger of disease from unprotected springs. Abundant water supply.
Section 15  Importance of river. Promise of access to water after the move.
Section 16  Her children; school and looking after animals.
Section Section 17-19  What LHDA has promised: houses, compensation money, fields, training programmes, employment opportunities. People working at the dam – mainly outsiders, including foreigners. Little employment of local people because “…the chiefs do not show any interest in seeing that their people are served fairly”.
Section Section 19-20  Services and access to them (churches and schools nearby, clinics further). ‘When the river is in flood people do not go anywhere.’ Feels the community needs guidance in trying to get more services.
Section Section 21-23  Travel, before the road was built: “If a person was very sick he was taken on a stretcher made of sticks, and men carried him.” Procedure when someone dies: either buried immediately or taken to the mortuary at Masianokeng. Transfer of graves. Ceremonies planned for reburial.
Section 24  Opinion about leaving: “Whether I have an opinion or not, it is useless because we have to go away.” If the LHDA do not keep their promises they will rely on the chiefs to take action for them.