The Story of Waschbank

In 1964, the residents of Kalkspruit Maraba Village were removed from the area, as the land was supposedly to be used for mining purposes. The people from Kalkspruit Maraba Village relocated to the village of Waschbank. Since 1964, no mine has been built on the Kalkspruit land.

The original families that relocated to Waschbank, still have very strong ties to Waschbank, as many of the family members still live and manage the community. The Maraba clan, an Ndebele speaking clan, are the dominant group in Waschbank, resulting in Ndebele being the most prominent language spoken. However, the village is multi-cultural and the Ndebele clan co-reside with Bapedi and Tsonga clans. Ndebele, Tsonga and Sepedi are the spoken languages in the village.

The current chief of Waschbank is Carnation Mmaphuti Maraba, who succeeded the position after her husband, Abram Sibasa Maraba passed away. Maraba Chiefs believe that violence is never the answer and that all problems can be solved in a peaceful manner. Chief Carnation Maraba holds the clans regard for peace close to her heart, and runs the village in a way that demands respect and love within the Waschbank community. There is a strong female presence in the village and it is clear that the women of Waschbank play a leading role in managing the community. The women fill the leadership role in a stern yet loving manner, creating an environment which is well managed and where people are able to express themselves in whichever means they feel suits them best – be it creatively, through gardening, through telling stories or playing sport.

As well as being a historically, culturally and socially fascinating place, Waschbank is also surrounded by widespread natural beauty. Thaba ya Ga Mashilo, Thaba ya Pieterman, Thaba ya Ntsho and Thaba Ya Ga Teffo Mountains surround the Waschbank, adding to the subtle yet obvious feeling of peace that one feels when walking around the village. Waschbank is seperated from neighbouring village, Christina by the Noka eNskho River. There are numerous dams in the area, such as the Pieterman Dam and the Kronje Dam – which are both named after Afrikaaners who inhabited the area many years ago. If one needs a break from the quite village life, the bright lights of Polokwane are just a short drive away.