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Ethnic issues are important in the politics of the Northern Cape.For example, it is the site of the Orania settlement, whose leaders have called for a Volkstaat for the Afrikaner people in the province.The provincial assembly and premier are elected for five-year terms, or until the next national election.Political parties are awarded assembly seats based on the percentage of votes each party receives in the province during the national elections.Many sites across the province, mostly in open air locales or in sediments alongside rivers or pans, document Earlier, Middle and Later Stone Age habitation.From Later Stone Age times, mainly, there is a wealth of rock art sites – most of which are in the form of rock engravings such as at Wildebeest Kuil and many sites in the area known as ǀXam -ka ! They occur on hilltops, slopes, rock outcrops and occasionally (as in the case of Driekops Eiland near Kimberley), in a river bed.Minorities speak the other official languages of South Africa, and a few people speak indigenous languages such as Nama and Khwe.The provincial motto, Sa ǁa ǃaĩsi 'uĩsi ("We go to a better life"), is in the Nǀu language of the Nǁnǂe (ǂKhomani) people.

Cave sites include Wonderwerk Cave near Kuruman, which has a uniquely long sequence stretching from the turn of the twentieth century at the surface to more than 1 million (and possibly nearly 2 million) years in its basal layer (where stone tools, occurring in very low density, may be Oldowan).

The Northern Cape (Afrikaans: Noord-Kaap; Tswana: Kapa Bokone; Xhosa: u Mntla-Koloni) is the largest and most sparsely populated province of South Africa.

It was created in 1994 when the Cape Province was split up. It includes the Kalahari Gemsbok National Park, part of the Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park, an international park shared with Botswana.

Environmental factors have meant that the spread of Iron Age farming westwards (from the 17th century – but dating from the early first millennium AD in the eastern part of South Africa) was constrained mainly to the area east of the Langeberg Mountains, but with evidence of influence as far as the Upington area in the eighteenth century.

From that period the archaeological record also reflects the development of a complex colonial frontier when precolonial social formations were considerably disrupted and there is an increasing 'fabric heavy' imprint of built structures, ash-heaps, and so on.

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