Wednesday, April 28, 2004

Meanwhile back in the Laager
This is interesting indeed. The white 'homeland' of Orania has launched its own currency. The 'Ora', as it is known, comes in four denominations, Ora 10, Ora 20, Ora 50 and Ora 100, with each note depicting different aspects of Afrikaans culture and history. The Reserve Bank is said to have received the news with caution.

I must confess that I'd rather thought that the whole Orania project was either dead or in the midst of dying. This news is thus something of a jolt. Despite Orania spokesman offering assurances that the idea is simply to retain purchasing power in the area it seems clear that the real intention is to stealthily move the area down the road to quasi-independence. Might we expect an Orania passport next and perhaps an official Orania representative in Pretoria? What about an Orania self-defence force and Orania security service? So far as I understand things, because the entire 'homeland' is on privately owned property there is nothing to stop the people living there from implementing these sorts of changes. I suspect that if things do go down that road though, the people of Orania will find that, at some point, they run into problems with the constitution (Murray, is this correct?) if not the government itself. Nevertheless, it will be interesting to see just how far they get.

UPDATE: It turns out that Orania has a website, which I include for your edification. Its all in Afrikaans, naturally, so be warned.

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