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Archival description
Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory Cape Town
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Judge Thumba Pillay Collection

  • ZA COM NMAP 2010/9
  • Series
  • 1959-01-01 - 1979-12-31
This series consists of two letters smuggled out of Robben Island in 1977. Mac Maharaj gave them to Judge Thumba Pillay of legal firm of Pillay Seedat & Co. The letters are written by Nelson Mandela and Ahmed Kathrada, both of them wishing to appoint the firm to act on their behalf in legal proceedings against the Department of Prisons. Since the authorities refused contact with their attorneys, they had to use this "illegal" method to seek legal representation. The collection includes an envelope that Judge Pillay had posted addressed to his law firm. He did this in the event that the Security Police questioned him about how he received the letters, he would be able to prove that they were posted anonymously to him.
A second donation of Judge Thumba Pillay contains correspondence and documents (mainly copies) pertaining to the case of Mandela vs Minister of Prisons.

Mandela, Nelson Rolihlahla

Attention: Col. van Aarde

  • ZA COM NMPP-PC-NMPP-PC-2009/6-NMF_Dcard_V1_035
  • Item
  • 1969-07-22
  • Part of Prison Collection

This item consists of a letter of 1 page written by Mandela to the Commanding officer of Robben Island, Colonel van Aarde requesting permission to attend the funeral of his son, Thembekile.

Mandela, Nelson Rolihlahla

NMF_Smuggled_Letter_1_001.jpg

This item consists of an envelope addressed to the legal firm of Pillay Seedat & Co. For security reasons, Judge Pillay had a family member mail an empty envelope to the firm. This precaution was taken to protect Mac Maharaj and Judge Pillay in the event of an interrogation by Security Police. The Judge could then say that he had received the documents from an unknown source through the post.

Pillay, Thumba

Envelope

This item consists of an envelope addressed to the legal firm of Pillay Seedat & Co. For security reasons, Judge Pillay had a family member mail an empty envelope to the firm. This precaution was taken to protect Mac Maharaj and Judge Pillay in the event of an interrogation by Security Police. The Judge could then say that he had received the documents from an unknown source through the post.

Pillay, Thumba

NMF_Smuggled_Letter_1_002.jpg

This item consists of an envelope addressed to the legal firm of Pillay Seedat & Co. For security reasons, Judge Pillay had a family member mail an empty envelope to the firm. This precaution was taken to protect Mac Maharaj and Judge Pillay in the event of an interrogation by Security Police. The Judge could then say that he had received the documents from an unknown source through the post.

Pillay, Thumba

Sahm Venter Collection

  • ZA COM NMAP 2009/14
  • Series
  • 1984 to 2000
Documents accumulated by Sahm Venter from ca. 1984-2002 as part of her work as a journalist as well as a dedicated political activist during the struggle for liberation in South Africa. The documents have been categorised and arranged by the following subjects or formats:
Personal papers
Organisations / Community based organisations
Court cases, Petitions and Appeals
Speeches and writings
Universities
Publications.

Venter, Sahm

Nelson Mandela and P.W. Botha's secret meeting, South Africa: [Still image]

Nelson Mandela's secret meeting with President P.W. Botha. From l to r: General Williamsen, Nelson Mandela, Neil Barnard, Pres. Botha and Kobie Coetsee. Only photograph of the meeting that took place on 5 July 1989. Other people in the photo are General Johan Willemse (Commissioner of Prisons), Niel Barnard (Head of National Intelligence), and Hendrik "Kobie" Coetsee (Minister of Justice).

Ehlers, Ters

Nelson Mandela's address to rally in Cape Town on his release from prison

  • ZA COM MR-S-016
  • Item
  • 11 February 1990
  • Part of Speeches

First public speech by Mandela in 27 years, after his release from prison. Mandela ends this address with a quote from his speech from the dock given at Rivonia trial in 1964. Note he is quoting from the prepared speech and not as he actually delivered at the trial. Both the verbatim and prepared speeches are reproduced.

Mandela, Nelson Rolihlahla

George Hallett Collection – Mandela Photos

  • ZA COM NMAP 2013/21
  • Series
  • 1994 - 2000
Three prints by and from George Hallett:
(a) Mandela on the Election Trail, Athlone Stadium, April 1994
(b) Madiba at his Houghton Residence, April 1994
(c) Nelson Mandela, Cape Town 2000.

Hallett, George

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