Russian government welcomes South African farmers fleeing over fear of being murdered Many of the families have been there for over 4 centuries. The new South African government, led by President Cyril Ramaphosa, has pledged to return the lands owned by White farmers since the 1600s to the Black citizens of the country. The government said it is planning to put an end to what it calls the legacy of apartheid, where most of South Africa’s land is still in the hands of its minority white population. Russia has 43 million hectares of unused farmland and has recently begun giving out free land to Russian citizens to cultivate farming. The land giveaway program, which began in 2014, has been a huge success. They work hard and know what they’re doing. 15,000 White Farmers Flee South Africa for Russia: 'It’s Life or Death'