Gaika people

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The Ngqika [ŋǃʱiːkʼa] or Gaika /ɡɑːˈkə/ are the royal clan of the Rharhabe Xhosa, who moved westwards over the Kei River, away from the Xhosa heartland. Historically, they are often contrasted with the Gcaleka Xhosa who remained behind in the Xhosa "Transkei".

In colonial times, the Ngqika lands were known as British Kaffraria. Later the Apartheid government gave them a form of independence as the former "Ciskei" homeland.

Their famous chief Mgolombane Sandile led most of the Rharhabe Xhosa in a series of frontier wars with both the Cape Colony and the British Empire.

Ciskei/Winterberg massacre[edit]

It was Gaika's people who at the end of 1834 poured into the Colony, killed forty white men (but spared women and children), burned the homes of 400 settlers, and looted hundreds of head of cattle and horses.[1]


  1. ^ Ransford, Oliver (1974). The Great Trek. Cardinal. p. 19. ISBN 978-0-351-17949-5.