Imihla Yokuqala ye Robben Island

Ukusetyenziswa kwe Robben Island Ngabase Europe

©Roger de la Harpe
iRobben Island yaqala yasetyenziswa ngabase European, njengendawo eluncedo yokumisa yabo balambileyo bahamba ngenqanawe kwindlela yabo esingise Empuma. Buncinane ubungqina obubonakalisa ukuba abantu bokuqala base Koloni babekhe bazihlupha ngokuwela ulwandle oludlokovayo besiza kwesi siqithi. Abase Europe babemisa rhoqo kwesi siqithi baze bavune izinja zolwandle kunye noo nombombiya bagcwelise izikhephe zabo. Kwaye kushicilelwe ukuba aba bantu babeqokelela inani elifikelela kuma 1100 oonombombiya ngemini enye. Kakade, igama lesi siqithi sisusela kwigama lolwimi lwesi Dutch elithi ‘Robbe’, nelithetha ‘inja yolwandle’.

Umsebenzi wokuqala we Robben Island yayindawo yokugcina okanye ukubeka yabahambi ngolwandle base Europe ukusukela ngeminyaka yoo 1600 ukubheka phambili. Abase Europe babekwa sebenzisa isiqithi njengendawo ye posi engagunyaziswanga, beshiya iincwadi kunye neengxelo phantsi kwamatye aphawuliweyo ‘eposi’ ukuze iinqanawe ezihambisana nabo ezifikileyo zizithathe. Zikhona neengxelo zenqanawa ezonakele esithubeni baze abakhweli bazo kunyanzeleke ukuba balinde ukuncedwa kwesi siqithi, bambi babelinda iinyanga ezininzi.

Iinqanawa Ezonakeleyo Kumanxweme eRobben Island

©Roger de la Harpe
Ulwandle olujikeleze esi siqithi ludume ngokudlokova, kwaye ukwenza izinto zibembi kakhulu, esi siqithi sirhangqwe ngamatye arhabaxa athe thantalala kumanzi aluhlaza-ocacileyo. Dibanisa oku nomoya obhudlayo kunye nenkungu eyokuma kulwandle lwe Atlantic, konke oku yingozi yenqanawa elindele ukwenzeka nanini na. Nangona babeqhele ukubasa imililo phezu kwe Fire Hill (nebizwa nge Minto Hill ngoku) ukuze kubonwe indlela ngabanye, iinqanawa ezingapha kwama 30 zazintlitheka zonakale kulamanxweme mancinane.

Izihlandlo ezibini kwezithathu zezingozi zenzeka phambi kokuba kwakhiwe ilighthouse ngomnyaka ka 1863, kodwa iinqanawa zaqhubeka nokothuswa sese siqithi. Unxweme olusemntla we Robben Island luzele zinqanawa zintathu ezantlitheka kwesi siqithi, zonke zityiwa ngamanzi olwandle kumatye anetyuwa.

iBritain eCape of Good Hope

©Roger de la Harpe
Ngomnyaka ka 1602, iDutch East India Company (ngesi Dutch: Vereenigde Oost-Indische Compagnie, or VOC) yasekwa eHolland, kwaye lenkampani incinic izimiseleyo (inkampani yokuqala ethengisa izinto ezimbalwa kumhlaba wonke) yawenza umsebenzi wayo ukufumana ulawulo lwendlela esingise Empuma. Ukuxhasa eli shishini, iVOC yaqala ukuphanda ngendlela zokuseka ubukho base Europe kwindawo kanye encedisana nokuphuhla kwalenkampani nebalulekileyo iCape of Good Hope, nemi phakathi kwe Old World kunye ne New World.

Esi sisikhundla esasibambileyo kunanamhlanje. Ngokomhlaba kunye nangentetho buciko. Kodwa ke, ababekhuphisana nabo bafika eKoloni kuqala. Ngomnyaka ka 1614, iBritish East India Company yahlela ukuzinzisa amabanjwa angama 100 eKoloni. Ekuhambeni kwexesha umxube wamadoda ali 18 okanye ali 19 akhethwa aze athunyelwa eKoloni endaweni yasentilongweni. Yayiliqela lokuqala lamabanjwa ukuthuthwa, umkhwa owathi waqheleka waze ekuhambeni kwethuba wapheliswa kwilizwe lase Australia (Nelalingakuthandi ukohlwaya abantu).

Iqela lokuqala lamaNgesi (British) elangquzulana nenkokheli yohlanga lwama Khoikhoi ase Koloni, uXhore, lakhokelela kukruthwakruthwano nalapho uninzi lwamadoda abulawa okanye angxwelerheka. Oku kwachazwa nge ‘ngokungavisisani’ kuka Xhore, nowayefuna ukuqonda ukuba kutheni Amangesi esishiye abantu babo ngasemva azokuhlala kumhlaba wama Khoikhoi. Wathi uzabanceda bahlale kuphela ukuba iNgilane izakumxhasa kwimfazwe yezinye iintlanga ezikwalapha. Kwixesha elifutshane elilandelayo, kwabakho okunye ukungquzulana okungamandla phakathi kwabo babefike bengamabanjwa kunye nohlanga lwama Xhosa, kwaye oku kwanyanzelisa ukuba abamhlophe baxhumele kwizikhetshana zabo ngokukhawuleza babalekela e Robben Island.

Isikhululo Sesigxina Sokuthoba Unxano

©Roger de la Harpe
Emva kokuzama ukusindisa abantu okwaphanzayo, abathathu abasindayo bagqiba ekubeni bahlale kwesi siqithi kunokuba baphindele eNgilane. Kusenokwenzeka ukuba baye baphetha besindiswa apho yinqanawe yama Dutch okanye yama Phutukezi (Portuguese). Esi sithathu sakhetha ukuba siphindela emakhaya sakhwela inqanawe ebizwa ngokuba si Sipho Sonyaka Omtsha-New Year’s Gift. Ixesha labo kwesi siqithi asizange senze nto ukubatshintsha, kwaye ukuziphatha kwalamadoda kwi nqanawe iGift yabizwa njengabane mikhuba kangangokuba babebekwa rhoqo kwindawo egcina impahla yenqanawe njengesohlwayo. Kwii yure nje ezimbalwa befike eNgilane, abancanyelweni bezikrelemnqa baba isipaji baze “Bagwetyelwa ityala labo lokuqala, nebathi baligxothelwa kodwa abazange baxolelwe.”

Emva komtyobo wama Ngesi wokuzama ukuzinza eKoloni, abase Europe babelumke kakhulu kwimibono yabo. Ngomnyaka ka 1652, owayesakuba ngumnyangi wee nqanawe obizwa ngo Jan Van Riebeeck wathunyelwa yinkampani iDutch East India Company ukuze aqulunqe isikhulolo sesigxina sokuthoba unxano eKoloni. Injongo yelishishini yayikukunika inqanawa ezimisa eKoloni iziqhamo, Imifumo, amanzi kunye nenyama zonke ezi zinto ngengeniso ebonakalayo. Ukwenza oku, ke, abaphambukeli abatsha kwakufuneka balime isitiya semifuno baze benze isivumelwano kunye nabahlali bohlanga lwama Khoikhoi ukuze bafumane iinkomo kunye neegusha.

iRobben Island Phantsi Kolawulo Lwama Dutch

©Roger de la Harpe
Ama Dutch ayezimisele ngenjongo zawo, aze achitha iinyanga elungiselela yonke into. Ngexesha elifanelekileyo iinqanawa ezintathu zahamba zithwele amadoda angama 150 kunye namabhinqa ambalwa ukuze bayoqala impilo yabo entsha eKoloni. Yabasisiqalo samahla ndinyuka oMzantsi Afrika nawathi aqhubekeka kangange sentyuri ezintathu ezinesiqingatha ezilandelayo. iRobben Island yasebenza njengendawo yezinto ezahlukeneyo kwiminyaka emininzi. Kwaye yayi yindawo eluncedo kubaphambukeli bama Dutch.

Bamane betyelela ukuthatha izinja zolwandle kunye noonombombiya, baze batshabalalisa ndendalo yasendle (neyayininzi kangangokuba yayichazwa njenge ‘mangalisayo’) oku kwakhokelela ekubeni kuqulunqe imiyalelo yokugcina indalo eMzantsi Afrika. Lo mthetho wachaza ukuba izinja zolwandle zesi siqithi kunye noonombombiya bangathathwa kuphelwa ukuba kukho impepha mvume. Ukuqinisekisa ukuba oku kuyenzeka, unogada wathunyelwa kwesi siqithi, zaze nezinja ezigada iigusha zabekwa ukuze zikhusele imihlambi kwabo bahamba ngee nqanawe abasenokuba ezi zilwanyana, kuba bengafuni kubhatala amaxabisa aphezulu kwisikhululo sokuthenga esasise Table Bay.

Emva Kweminyaka Elishumi

©Johan Boshoff
Ngomnyaka ka 1654, njengokuba umhlambi usanda amadoda amaninzi athunyelwa kwesi siqithi ukuze akhe izindlu kunye nesitiya semifuno. Amaqokobhe amaninzi olwandle afunyanwa kwesi siqithi, nawayesetyenziswa ukuvelisa ilime, kwaye nezithole zelimestone kunye ne Malmesbury slate zaphawulwa kulendawo.

Iqela lokuqala lamabanjwa lathunyelwa kwesi siqithi ngomnyaka ka 1657 baze basetyenziswa ukuqhekeza amatye, nawayesetyenzisw ukwakhwa izindlu kunye neendlela zedolophu ekhulayo eKapa. Eli qela lamakhoboka kunye nababhacileyo abazange babonakale njengabasebenzi abonelisayo, nangona kunjalo, iCompany nayo yayisokolo ukufumana abantu ababekulungele ukuhlala kwindawo esecaleni ngoluhlobo. Ukugula kunye nendlala kwathwaxa abo bafika kuqala, kodwa imfuyo yanda kwaye, ngomnyaka ka 1666, isiqithi sasiqhayisa ngee gusha ezingama 350, iinkomo ezili 10, iibhokhwe ezingama 40, iihagu ezingama 30 kunye nabantu abangama 25 (kuquka namabanjwa angama 14). Emva kweminyaka elishumu, kwabakho inani elingaphaya kwama 300 eegusha kunye neenkomo ezingali 1000.

Translated by Zizipho Silwana