The Afrikaner separatist town of Orania and the Xhosa community of Mnyameni have signed an agreement to help both achieve greater self-reliance.
They had agreed that their communities should take greater responsibility for their own progress, Orania spokesman Jaco Kleynhans said in a statement.
"By signing this agreement today we prove that an alternative exists for the present syndrome of dependency that affects so many South African communities."
The agreement outlined the priorities of both parties. The Mnyameni group wanted to move away from being "totally dependent" to an "economically, socially and environmentally" self-reliant community.
Orania aimed "to be a self-determining Afrikaner community taking responsibility for its own future in terms of economy, culture and labour".
They resolved to recognise their differences and commonalities for the purposes of working towards the improvement of both groups.
According to the agreement, they would share "the knowledge and experience at our disposal, to unlock the potential of our people, develop the assets of our areas, empower our members and capacitate our institutions".
President Jacob Zuma visited Orania in 2010, an event which its founder, Professor Carel Boshoff (who passed away in 2011), called a “red letter day”.
“We would remember it as an outstanding day,” Boshoff said.
He referred to Orania as a community of “interesting ideas”. Zuma said he was warmly welcomed by local leaders.
“And we talked.”
Referring to Boshoff, Zuma said he had never stopped preaching his ideas and views of Orania, which had been his dream.
The Afrikaners at Orania were prepared to live in South Africa, but wanted a place to exercise their culture, he said. – Sapa