Khoisan leader given state funeral despite last wishes by SAPA, 1 July 2012

Khoisan traditional leader, Oom Dawid Kruiper, was buried during a state funeral in Andriesvale in the Kalahari despite concerns from traditional Koisan members.

The funeral was attended by some 3 000 people, including Northern Cape government officials, traditional leaders and friends of the Khomani San.

Traditional leaders at the funeral were concerned by governments' intervention.

Paul Swartbooi, a member of the Bondelswarts tribe and cultural activist, said government intervened by taking over the arrangements of the funeral.

Nevertheless, Swartbooi said the funeral was a success as various traditional leaders took over during the service to bury Oom Dawid with the necessary dignity he was supposed to receive.

"We took over proceedings in a peaceful and respectable nature. The government delegates obviously did not like this but we are pleased with how the proceedings went."

A member of the Khomani San and friend of Kruiper, Petrus Vaalbooi, addressed the delegates in his own language

He reprimanded government for the bad social circumstances of the Khomani San and of empty promises made by government to the Khoi and San communities.

Chairman of the Bushmen Council Andries Steenkamp criticized the state funeral.

"This is not the kind of funeral that Oom Dawid would have wanted...he would have preferred the money [to be] spent on his veld school.”

He said that was Kruiper's last wish.

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