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|Municipality||City of Tshwane|
|• Total||42.20 km2 (16.29 sq mi)|
|• Density||2,600/km2 (6,800/sq mi)|
|Racial makeup (2011)|
|• Black African||99.2%|
|First languages (2011)|
|• Northern Sotho||9.9%|
|Time zone||UTC+2 (SAST)|
|Postal code (street)|
Mabopane was proclaimed in 1959 as a black-only residential settlement by the then Transvaal administration. Before its proclamation, the area was under the administration of Transvaal government little more than grazing lands with small communities in Boukenhoutfontein (which later became Block A), Winterveldt and Hebron. The initial residents of Boukenhoutfontein were victims of forced removals from Wallmansthal, Lady Selborne, Boukenhoutkloof and other farm areas around Pretoria. Other residents of Mabopane were Mapulana people who were evicted from the farms near Premier Mine and settled in a non-developed area commonly called Mapulaneng, which is between Block A, Lebanon and Block U. With the financing coming from the South African government the first blockhouses were constructed similarly to those found in Soweto, beginning with Block A which had two-roomed houses, Block B, Block C, Block D and Block E. The areas within Mabopane were planned according to the class of its citizens; for example Block D (with many mansions which housed the politically connected) in comparison to Block E (blockhouses).
Mabopane was incorporated into the bantustan of Bophuthatswana from 1977 to 1994. Parts of Mabopane, Blocks F, G and H became Soshanguve to house the Non-Tswana residents of Mabopane during the Bantustan rule. Many institutions and projects were undertaken under the Presidency of Lucas Manyane Mangope of Bophutatswana this included a training college - the ODI Manpower Learning Centre, ODI hospital, housing projects in areas today known as Beirut and Lebanon, ODI prison in Block U, new high schools in Dr. Moreosele High School in Block U and the new Ngaka Maseko High School was moved from Block C to Lebanon, the ODI stadium near what used to be Sun International's Morula Casino and a highway between Mabopane and Garankuwa. These are some of the public works service delivery projects Mangope instituted to improve the lives of the people of Mabopane, the quality of service delivery unsurpassed since the dawn of the new South Africa. The residents of Soshanguve who were not Tswana speaking refused to be incorporated into Bophuthatswana and fought to remain under Pretoria. They identified with the struggles of those living in Atteridgeville and Mamelodi. The railway line that ran from Mabopane train station across the township served as a dividing line between Soshanguve and Mabopane and later became a borderline between Pretoria and Bophuthatswana. In the 1990s we saw the beginning of the decline of Mabopane. In an effort to restructure the municipalities to be inclusive the new government also sidelined those institutions they believed symbolized Mangope's complicity with the Apartheid government. We saw divestment from the ODI Stadium which was now nicknamed "Stadium sa Mangope" which means the stadium that belongs to Lucas Mangope denoting negative sentiment towards the structure. The schools were no longer properly maintained as calls for resources to be equally disbursed amongst the rest of the poorly resourced schools.
In the Apartheid days Mabopane was an active base for PAC and ANC members who mobilized workers against the government and playing the South African government against the Bophuthatswana Administration. The times were tough particularly in the mid 1980s as the local authority was holding on to power. Mabopane Square used to be the gathering ground for activists and communists protesting against the government. School riots were plentiful in the 1976 Student Uprising. Several township administration halls were burnt and the bus depot was vandalized.
In as much as Mabopane was not highly noticed during the apartheid era, the churches in Boekenhoud served a great purpose in ensuring that people had safe spaces to hold their meetings without raising suspicions to the police.
With democracy on its way in the early 1990s the face of Mabopane started to change. The old authorities were replaced with new leaders in what was then the Town of Mabopane. Hon. Lehobye was the first mayor along with Hon. Molema deputy mayor who was elected to administer the town. In the advent of the new millennium, Mabopane has seen new growth and repairs and maintenance of its infrastructure.
The climate is subtropical.
Almost all of Mabopane's residents are black, with a few Somali traders and shopkeepers. The age groups in the township are generally in line with the country's age groups, with teenagers as the largest age group.
The majority of residents are of the Christian faith with different nominally sects like Zcc, Lutheran, Twelve apostles and John Wesley. Non-Christian faiths in the minority include Islam. Mabopane like most townships in South Africa has a wide range of income groups, the poorest earn between US$100-$US300 of which comes mostly from State social grants, the second group middle-class earnings is generally between US$400-US$1400. There is a definite class distinction within this group. The upper class in the township as the minority enjoys low property value taxes and rates they income bracket does exceed US$5000 along with large equity in assets. The upper class is comparable to the middle class in any developed country.
Most residents in the township rely on public transport to commute and this is through rail (Mabopane Station), bus and taxi. The trains usually take working residents to the main industrial area's in Pretoria, whilst the taxi is used for local travel (within Mabopane, Soshanguve, Ga-Rankuwa and Hebron), it costs about US$0.70 for a trip that can span 8 miles. Transport to the main city is through the larger taxis which carry 14-22 passengers. The taxis are available from 04:00 21:00 and will cost US$2 to commute about 26.66 miles to town. Most taxis are efficient, clean and the drivers will show courtesy to their passengers. About 20% of citizens own cars.
The languages in Mabopane mostly are from the Bantu origins. Tswana, Sotho, Sepedi, Ndebele, Tsonga, Zulu and English are the languages spoken in Mabopane. The overwhelming majority of residents understand and speak Tswana.
Some of the counselors serving the district include struggle heroes MMC S. Nkhwashu, MMC D Lehobye, Couns. J Letebele and Couns. J Sindane who is the current counselor. Mabopane has good representation at Munitoria through the counselors.
The local government City of Tshwane manages the area through agencies such as Sandspruit Water Works and Eskom, locally it operates from Boekenhout. Residents enjoy tax rebates on properties, discounted electricity and water services. The local government has put in an effort into cleaning and maintaining Mabopane Square and its surrounding gardens. The local government, however, is slow in improving the infrastructure of Mabopane. Many roads remain untarred, manholes are open and a lack of security exists. Tshwane Metropolitan Police department is expected to open up in 2011/2012 on Lucas Mangope st Block U.
Primary and High SchoolsEdit
Mabopane High School, Selelo Primary School, Marula Primary School, Soshangan Primary,Ikeleng Primary School, Ditshaba Primary, Ngaka Maseko High School, Pelotona High School, DA Mokoma High School, Reinotswe Special School, Nong Primary School, Rekopantswe Primary School, Botsalo Primary School,Morula View Primary School, Dr AT Moreosele High School and many more schools exist in Mabopane.
Higher Education in Mabopane is seriously under pressure as more students prefer to attend lecture outside the district. There is only one community college, Tshwane South College previously known as MANPOWER. It offers a medium variety of courses, mainly rudimentary and basic and technical skills subjects. There is no option to receive any degree but a national certificate accredited by Umalusi. There is a large failure rate at this campus in comparison to other colleges.
There are about two F.E.T. (Further Education Training) institutions in Mabopane offering transferring of skills mainly to unemployed residents, the elderly and women.