Long Walk Original Manuscript (Image #281) - Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory
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Title: Long Walk Original Manuscript (Image #281)
Transcript: accused number two, Helen Joseph, as his first witness, and who would then be cross examined by the 27 co accused. Thereafter she would be cross examined by the Crown and re examined by accused number one. He would than proceed to call accused number three and the whole procedure outlined in regard to accused number two would be repeated until every accused was called.
It is always difficult to prepare a case from prison and this is particularly the case in South Africa where one is immediately hampered by racial barriers which multiply the difficulties. This is exactly what happened to us in 1960. In this particular case proper consultations required a meeting of all the accused, where we could discuss the case together in privacy and not in the hearing of the warders. We enjoyed neither of these privileges. Firstly, the Prison Regulations prohibited meetings between male and female prisoners and this meant we could not have joint consultations with Helen Joseph and Lilian Ngoyi. Secondly, the official policy discouraged contact between black and white prisoners. Helen would be the first defence witness to be called after the withdrawel of the lawyers and Duma Nokwe and I had to prepare her evidence. For this purpose we required the presence of Farid Adams, Ahmed Kathadra and Leon Levy.
After protracted negotiations with the prison authorities and the Crown team, and which even involved raising the matter formally in court, we were ultimately allowed to have these consultations but under stringent conditions. In the first place there would be no contact between white and black prisoners. In this regard an iron fence was erected to separate Helen Joseph and Leon Levy from us. Secondly, there would be no contact either between Helen Joseph and Lilian
Extent and Medium: 1 page