Long Walk Original Manuscript (Image #259) - Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory
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Title: Long Walk Original Manuscript (Image #259)
Transcript: The appointment of Pirow to lead the Crown team indicated the importance attached by the goverment to the case. He was one of the top barristers in the country, who had since retired to his farm. As a former Minister of Justice and as a man who had acted on several occasions as a senior to the judge who was to be appointed President of the Special Court that would try us, it was hoped that he would carry a lot of weight in that court. As a man who had met Hitler shortly before the second World War, leader of the New Order the South African version of the Nazi Party, and one who was passionately anti communist, he was the one advocate in the country who would tackle the whole job as an act of faith and press hard for a conviction.
For the trial the government set up a special court of three white judges with Judge Rumpff as President. On merit he deserved that position for he was certainly an able judge and, soon after the commencement of the proceedings, he struck me as better informed that the average South African white man on local and international political trends. But there was a widespread belief that he was a member of the Broederbond (Band of Brothers, a secret Afrikaner organisation) the secret society of Afrikaners whose aim was to establish an Afrikaner Republic governed by Afrikaners. The second member of the court was Judge Ludorf, a well known member of the Nationalist Party; the
third was Judge Kennedy from Natal who was also a Nationalist Party supporter. Kennedy had earned himself the reputation of a hanging judge when he sent about 23 Africans to the gallows for killing two white policemen. This was the "Court of Justice" that the government set up to try us. Not only was it a racialist court, but it was composed of carefully selected judges who had close links with the ruling party.
Extent and Medium: 1 page