Residents of the Afrikaner stronghold, Orania in the Northern Cape say they are struggling during the lockdown as their economic activities have been halted. Residents are adhering to the regulations of the lockdown and have closed businesses and schools.
They are also wearing masks and screening community members.
Orania is situated along the Orange River and is known as an Afrikaner only town which runs its economy independently from South Africa with its own currency, the Ora. Orania has been running itself since 1991. The town’s economy, which depends mostly on the agriculture industry, has also been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic national lockdown.
About 2 000 residents have been screened and tested and no COVID-19 cases have been reported in the town.
The Head of Orania Movement Joost Strydom says since the town is running its own economy, residents are feeling the impact of the lockdown.
“Economy can also cost lives in terms of hunger and so on. What we did in Orania is we stayed inside as the rules of the lockdown, but we also kept innovating. We got multiple people making masks. Also, the agricultural sector, which is very big here in the area, is very important for us as Orania. You know it’s a sector that’s been excluded from the lockdown. It doesn’t mean you can do what you want we need to be socially responsible but we got our people working on farms keeping social distance and producing food for the nation.”
The Afrikaner community hopes their economy will be back on its feet soon after the lockdown. Residents hope things will get back to normal, saying it’s everyone’s duty to play an integral part to combat the pandemic.
”Schools and businesses are also affected, but we have come up with innovative ways for learners to study at home.”
In the videos below, Orania leaders say the white-only town is struggling economically due to the lockdown.