Sekhukhune II and the Pedi Operations ofthe Anglo-Boer War, 1899-1902

  • Felix Malunga Department of History, University of Venda
Keywords: Pedi operations, Sekhukhune II, Anglo-Boer War, Zuid-Afrikaansche Republiek, Abel Erasmus, the Native Commissioner


In this paper an attempt will be made to demonstrate how the Pedi under the leadership of Sekhukhune II took advantage of wartime conditions during the Anglo - Boer War to reshape the pattern of colonial relations imposed on them by the Zuid-Afrikaansche Republiek, to attempt to re-establish the dominance of the Sekhukhune House in the eastern Transvaal and to negotiate favourable terms with the occupying British military forces once the ZAR was defeated.It will also be shown that often Sekhukhune II deliberately followed a policy of not eliminating republican govemment officials, Boer farmers and their families as well as the Berlin missionaries in order not to antagonise the British and Boer military authorities against him. However, Sekhukhune II subjected all these groups to frequent harassment. Another primary aim of Sekhukhune II was to concentrate on punishing "sell-out usurpers" of the Pedi paramountcy who had betrayed the Pedi polity by pledging allegiance to Abel Erasmus, the Native Commissioner, who had represented Boer hegemony over the Pedi between 1881 and 1899.Again, Sekhukhune II punished Pedi Christian converts of the Berlin missionary society who had abandoned and undermined Pedi traditions and culture by converting and adhering to Christian principles. In this respect, a number of Berlin mission stations became battlefields of the warring Pedi factions. In the process these mission stations were neutralised as centres of the Berlin missionary activities. It was only after 1902 that attempts were made by the missionary authorities to rebuild these mission stations.
How to Cite
Malunga, F. (2012). Sekhukhune II and the Pedi Operations ofthe Anglo-Boer War, 1899-1902. Scientia Militaria - South African Journal of Military Studies, 31(1).