Long Walk Original Manuscript (Image #183) - Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory
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Title: Long Walk Original Manuscript (Image #183)
Transcript: Successive governments have carefully exploited the fears and fanned the hostility of the white workers towards their black bretheren. Through the legislation they have built a solid wall to protect the white worker against any black encroachement. In this situation class unity became difficult and antagonisms between black and white workers became so intense as to explode into violent racial clashes as in the mining strike of 1922.
The prosecution, deportation, mass shootings, hangings and a host of other methods of victimizing white workers that were characteristic of their struggles in the early 20s are things of the past. The coming to power of the Nationalist Labour Pact Ministry in 1924 marked the beginning of the end of the poor white problem and the entrenchment of white workers in South Africa as the labour aristocracy. The only section of the working class that enjoys the franchise, they have wrung important concessions from both the government and the employers. The poor white problem that hit the Afrikaner worker in the 1930s has long been forgotten and they are now firmly established in fat jobs in the mines, industry, commerce and the civil service. Above all, they have kept the Nationalist Party in government continuously since 1948.
The suppression of trade unionism among African workers, racial division of the trade unions, the encouragement of splinter unions, job reservation, exceptionally high wages, have bound the white workers to the employers and induced them to collaborate in the oppression and exploitation of the black worker. The government is prepared to accord special privileges to the white worker even if
Extent and Medium: 1 page