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This day in history: Land dispossession legislated

This day in history: Land dispossession legislated

On Thursday June 19, 1913, the South African government passes the Native Land Act (No. 27 of 1913), officially allocating only around 7% of arable land to black South Africans. The rest of the fertile land is reserved for whites.


The law effectively legislated the dispossession of land from blacks, as they were prohibited from buying land in white areas.


The act also designated territory to blacks, and stipulated that they were only allowed to live outside these areas if they could prove that they were employed.


Debates in Parliament defended the Act, saying that it was passed to limit friction between the races. What it did in effect was provide more agricultural land to white farmers and force blacks to work as labourers.


Other events on this day:


1999 - The Springboks beat Italy 101-0 at Kings Park Stadium, Durban, led by loose forward Corne Krige on debut.


1976 - Government responds to the Soweto student uprisings by banning 123 people for participating in the action.


1900 - The hopes of black people living in the Transvaal and Orange Free State republics for more freedom under British occupation are dashed when the British government announces that the Pass Law would remain in place. 


1811 - English explorer, naturalist, traveller, artist, and author William John Burchell leaves Cape Town with a specially built wagon to explore the interior of the Cape. His expedition lasts four years, and he returns with more than 50 000 specimen and having covered more than 7 000km.

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