Botswana’s bushmen lose home to diamond mines
Gaborone, Feb 12: The first diamonds mined from the Kalahari Desert, which is home to Africa‘s last surviving Bushmen has gone on sale for Valentine’s day.
Despite claims by the Government of Botswana that the eviction of the San people from their home in the Kalahari desert. The San peopleor Basarwa as they are traditionally known have been living in the Kalahari desert for centuries, today however most of them live inside the Central Kalahari Game Reserve.
According to reports, Botswana’s government has always denied that diamonds were the reason for the forced and illegal evictions of the Bushmen.
Later this year, President Ian Khama who is also a board member of US organization Conservation International, will host a “United for Wildlife” conference on the illegal wildlife trade in Botswana. The consortium of the World’s largest conservation organizations, headed by Princes William and Harry, has been criticized for failing to acknowledge that tribal peoples hunting for food are not poachers.But, in 2014, Gem diamonds opened a $4.9 billion diamond mine on the ancestral homeland of the Gope Bushman community.Current and former British members of Parliament such as Lord Jones, Jenny Tonge and Hilary Benn also denied that the evictions of the Bushmen were due to the discovery of diamonds. For centuries the Bushmen have lived sustainably amidst the wildlife but despite their simple lifestyle continue to face persecution in the name of conservation. Bushmen caught hunting to feed their families are arrested, beaten and tortured.
The Oslo Times