Midasi Wanana

A community activist who led several land occupations in Stellenbosch was shot dead in his home on the morning of Thursday 14 August 2019. Midasi “Midas” Wanana has been confirmed dead by the Western Cape SAPS, just hours before he was due to take part in a service delivery march into Stellies town centre.

Wanana was a resident of Kayamandi. The small, cramped township on the outskirts of Stellenbosch has an incredibly dense population for its 2km boundaries, and their quest for more space caused one of the most infamous land disputes in recent South African history.

Kayamandi residents had planned a shutdown march to end at the municipal offices at 11:00 but, at around 05:30 on Thursday morning, Midas Wanana was shot outside his home in O-Zone. 

Wanana was also a key member of the community of “Azania” in Kayamandi. The group had previously moved from backyard shacks in the area to a vacant plot called Watergang, which they understood belonged to the Stellenbosch municipality.

Following an application for an interdict to remove them, the municipality eventually bought the land from the owner, Stefan Smit, for R45 710 000. Smit himself was gunned down two months ago in June on his farm by masked men. Midas Wanana condemned the killing of Smit at the time.

If you would like to provide a personal recollection, please email us at: HRDMemorial@frontlinedefenders.org


Country:South Africa

Department/Province/State:Western Cape



Date of Killing:14/08/2019

Type of Work:Community leader

Organisation:Community of Azania

Sector or Type of Rights the HRD Worked On:ESC Rights

Sector Detail:Land Rights

More information:Fronr Line Defenders

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