House of Assembly: Vol3 - MONDAY 6 MAY 1985


laid upon the Table:

Associated Health Service Professions Amendment Bill [No 82—85 (GA)]—(Standing Committee on Health and Welfare).

To be referred to the appropriate Standing Committee, unless the House decides otherwise within three sitting days.


Mr Speaker, I move without notice:

That leave of absence for the period 10 to 30 April 1985 be granted to Mr H H Schwarz.

Agreed to.

APPROPRIATION BILL (Committee Stage Resumed)

Vote No 4—“Constitutional Development and Planning”:


Mr Chairman, I have judged it to be of assistance to hon members if, at this early stage, I announced specific resolutions which the Government has adopted in regard to the future provincial system to this House so that we might conduct a more meaningful debate on the matter.

It is quite obvious that the passing of the 1983 Constitution Act had clear implications for the present provincial dispensation. The process of constitutional adjustments entails that the respective levels of government have to be examined with a view to determining how effective and synchronized action or participation can be assured. Naturally, the inevitable consequence of this process is therefore that all levels of government would have to be reviewed critically with a view to determining the functionality of any specific level of government.

In the second place a further inevitable consequence of the process is therefore the allocation of functions to specific governmental institutions on the respective levels of administration, accepting that in the process of revising the present constitutional dispensation in our country with a view to the effective participation of the respective population groups in the decision-making process it is of course essential that special and specific attention be given to the role of the first and second levels of the governmental system in the future constitutional dispensation. This is a fact which the State President and I have emphasized on various occasions.

Provincial authorities have to be adapted in order to integrate with and adapt to the reforms on the central and social levels. The stage has now been reached at which greater clarity can be, and in fact ought to be, given on these new institutions on the second level. To be able to assess these changes in their correct perspective, however, it is necessary to glance briefly at the most important features of provincial government as we have it today, and to analyse them.

I should like to deal with the present position of this system. Firstly the provincial councils consist at present of directly elected representatives of the White voters in the respective provinces. The other communities are not represented on this tier of government.

Secondly, the legislative power of the provincial councils is at present limited to autonomy over only certain matters set forth primarily in the 1961 legislation on provincial government, the Financial Relations Act of 1976 and the Provincial Affairs Act of 1983. It includes the following spheres of responsibility: Certain hospitals; pre-primary, primary and secondary education for the White community only; local government for Whites and certain aspects of local government for Coloureds and for Indians, urban and regional planning for White, Coloured and Indian areas; certain roads; certain aspects of road transportation; traffic matters outside local authority areas; provision of library services for Whites, Coloureds and Indians; certain aspects of nature conservation; certain aspects of licensing; and control over horse racing.

Thirdly the national policy on these matters is almost without exception to be found in parliamentary legislation or Cabinet resolutions while the implementation thereof by the provincial councils is regulated by way of ordinances which may not be at variance with any laws of Parliament. For obvious reasons provincial ordinances on subjects such as traffic control, civil protection, firefighting, trade licences, etc are virtually identical in the respective provinces as a result of discussions between the Administrators and their Executive Committees.

Fourthly, matters which are of general importance to all the inhabitants of the provinces, as well as own affairs which are of importance only to certain communities, are at present being dealt with on provincial level, as is apparent from the list of functions to which I have just referred. At the same time this is out of step with the constitutional arrangements which have already been made on central and local levels to deal with these matters.

A further important aspect is that approximately 85% of the total provincial budgets is already being provided by the Central Government in the form of appropriations from the Revenue Fund to the provinces for the performance of these functions. Consequently there are no substantive powers and resources of taxation on provincial level from which those bodies can finance their functions themselves. The system of taxation which did exist earlier in this connection was in fact abolished as a result of the problems which it caused in practice, more specifically as a result of the alleged unequal distribution of the tax burden among the various provinces.

In the sixth place, the Administrators are at present statutorily designated as the official representatives in the respective provinces of the State President the Central Government. In exactly the same way as the State President and Ministers, the Administrators may exercise executive and administrative discretions by way of regulations in terms of laws of Parliament and provincial ordinances, as well as by way of executive decisions as authorized and defined by such legislation.

In the seventh place, the Executive Committee and Provincial Administration play a very important and in fact indispensable role in the process of the performance of governmental functions and the administration of the province concerned. It has been demonstrated that as a result of the proximity of the provincial authorities to the people and communities to whom they are rendering services, these authorities are better able to determine the wishes and needs of those people and communities and to manage their activities accordingly. This cannot happen if functions are controlled and implemented at one central point.

This distinctive character of the respective provinces literally developed over the centuries and led to the development of an effective system of administration on the second level which was concentrated on the specific interests and needs of the province in question.

To sum up: It appears after thorough assessment that the legislative process on the second level was less effective and successful than the executive and the administrative processes in the respective provinces.

Simultaneously it is further apparent from the provisional findings of other enquiries that the performance of certain governmental functions which occurs on the lower governmental levels, could be more effective and successful than the performance of such functions on the central or higher levels.

The Government had to take thorough cognizance of these factual findings in the consideration of the ways in which the provincial level could be brought into Une with constitutional development on the other governmental levels.

The process of reform on the second level began on 30 July 1982 when the State President announced the Government’s so-called Constitutional Objectives or GuideUnes. On that occasion a number of announcements were made which were already based on the above-mentioned provisional factual findings.

The guidelines which were adopted for the assessment and the recommendations to which I shall refer in a moment are the following: Provincial boundaries shall remain unchanged. Provincial councils shall continue to exist at least for the duration of their tenure of office—which continues until 1986. For the realization of self-determination and joint responsibility the provincial system will have to undergo adjustments. Changes will be accompanied by the necessary consultation. Certain provincial powers will be transferred to local authorities in order to ensure self-determination, while other functions may devolve to regional bodies and yet other functions may be dealt with on the central level. This relocation of functions will be accompanied by technical enquiries in which all parties will be consulted. New regional dispensations may in due course develop within provincial boundaries. Proposals from the provinces on the abovementioned matters will be welcomed.

The most important of these guidelines is the Government’s undertaking to hold continuous consultations with the provincial authorities on the envisaged and future changes.

In November 1982 this process of consultation commenced during an Administrators’ Conference held in Durban. Since then, as the responsible Minister, I have held regular talks and conducted negotiations on an ongoing basis with provincial interest groups.

These have included the Administrators concerned, the executive committees and provincial councils and have dealt with the results of further enquiries into the various adjustment possibilities on this level of administration.

In due course certain cardinal points of agreement or consensus among these representatives began to emerge. I want to compliment the Administrators and the members of the executive committees on the goodwill with which and the spirit of co-operation in which these thorny and sensitive discussions took place.

During discussions held on 16 February and 30 April this year, consensus was reached on general guidelines for a new second-tier administrative system. These guidelines were submitted to the Cabinet for consideration, which ratified all the principles contained in those guidelines by way of Cabinet resolutions.

†These decisions are the following:

  1. 1. That the present provincial dispensation be terminated between 29 April 1986 and 30 June 1986 and that provincial ordinances which have not as yet obtained parliamentary status as a result of the transfer of own functions, obtain the status of Acts of Parliament in the province concerned from that date.
  2. 2. That vacancies which occur until the expiry date of the provincial council system be filled by appointment by the party in the ranks of which the vacancy occurred.
  3. 3. That the execution of those own affairs which according to the Constitution have to be reallocated to the Ministers’ Councils but which at present are still provincial functions, be transferred to the respective Ministers’ Councils as soon as possible. These own affairs should be dealt with in a decentralized manner by locally based political functionaries. For transitionary and efficiency reasons such affairs could also be dealt with by political functionary in the general structure at second level as a delegate of the Ministers’ Council concerned, but with retention of their character as own affairs.
  4. 4. That the new second tier system should in its own right only deal with general affairs.
  5. 5. That the provincial councils, as institutions with original legislative powers, will not be able to continue to exist in the new dispensation and must therefore be abolished and replaced.
  6. 6. That there should be a strengthened executive authority for dealing with general affairs at second level, possibly in divided provinces, in the form of an administrative and executive committee with extensive statutory subordinate legislative and executive powers. This body will be directly answerable to Parliament for its handling of second tier political, financial and administrative measures possibly via a special standing committee of the province concerned. This arrangement in fact implies that Parliament will thus in future exercise Parliamentary control at second level over the actions of the executive on that tier of government.
  7. 7. That the functionaries in these executive institutions should come from the political arena and be nominated by the State President, but that those appointed from the ranks of members of Parliament will vacate their seats on being appointed to such positions. Their terms of office should be linked and run concurrently with that of Government at central level.
  8. 8. That in order to resolve conflict in the Executive Committee there must be a decision-making process whereby the Administrator, as in the case of the State President and the Cabinet, formulates the final decision of the Executive.
  9. 9. That there exists a need for advisory councils linked to the electorate to advise second tier executive authorities in the various fields of their responsibility.
  10. 10. That government functions be executed at the lowest possible level of government and that higher levels of government should as far as possible only be policymaking and monitoring levels of government.
  11. 11. That the present provincial administrations will continue to exist as second tier administrations, taking into account the changes which will be brought about by the reallocation of own matters to the Ministers’ Councils and of more functions from the central level to lower tiers.
  12. 12. That personnel and funds will be transferred together with the functions, in order to prevent the wastage of manpower and money and that officials affected thereby be guaranteed their job security.
  13. 13. That, where necessary, rationalization must take place between the departmental regional offices and second tier structures that perform similar functions in order to ensure optimal, effective and efficient rendering of services.
  14. 14. That proposals regarding which government functions can be devolved from central level to second, regional and local tiers, be drawn up as soon as possible after consultation with all concerned and be submitted to the Cabinet for approval.
  15. 15. That existing structures, processes and vested interests at second level be maintained and protected as far as possible within the framework of these decisions.
  16. 16. That at second level the State President’s speech on 25 January 1985 regarding liaison with Black communities also be borne in mind.
  17. 15. That MPCs who had been elected up to 1981 be enabled to buy back years of service in order to qualify for a minimum pension.

*The effect of these resolutions is that the important executive and administrative role of second tier authorities is reaffirmed and will in reality be extended. The legislative function of these governmental bodies will in future be exercised by the Administrator-in-Executive-Committee on Parliamentary, regional services and local levels, and by way of extended powers of regulation. The Government emphasizes once again that it is striving for a devolution of as many functions as possible, particularly from the central level to provincial and lower levels of administration, and also from the provinces to regional and local levels.

This reform therefore does not entail the centralization of authority at the seat of Government. In the meanwhile the dialogue with the provinces on the details of the implementation of these resolutions continues. The determination of the extent of functions on the new second level can only take place on the basis of the final report of the Commission for Administration’s project plan on the reallocation of governmental responsibilities and functions. This investigating team, in co-operation and consultation with all interested parties will, as a matter of urgency, submit to the Cabinet as soon as possible a comprehensive package of functions which the new administrations on the second level as well as the Own Affairs Administrations on the first level ought to have at their disposal. In addition the Government’s guidelines for the devolution of authority must be taken into consideration.

As far as the provinces are concerned, I want to conclude by emphasizing the important part played by officials in the reform process on the second level as well as the express guarantees for personnel protection which are contained in the abovementioned resolutions. The successful implementation of the Government’s resolutions and the manner in which and the speed with which the objectives can be attained, will to a very large extent be determined by the provincial officials. We need their goodwill and co-operation. This in itself ought to a large extent to be reassuring to those officials.

Furthermore I want to give the assurance that the envisaged change will not bring about any loss in or prejudice to salaries, rank, status or conditions of service of officials in the employ of these administrations. We shall also try to avoid any disruption as far as possible. The Government will throughout have regard to the interests of the officials in general and those of the provinces in particular.

The Government has great appreciation for the part played by the provincial councils and councillors in the history of our country. Their contribution was indispensable at a time when there was a particular need for it. Times have changed, however, and the system inevitably had to be adapted to the times, as I have already explained.

I hope that everyone involved will accept these resolutions of the Government in this spirit. The new provincial system will undoubtedly be a more viable and streamlined system within which it will in future still be possible to make thorough use of the experience of provincial councillors.


Mr Chairman, I intend participating in this debate more than once. I therefore hope to respond in more detail to the announcement the hon the Minister made here this afternoon; meanwhile I wish to say the following.

It is clear that the nature of constitutional development taking place as well as the implications of the Government’s policy in the past increasingly overhauled the functions of the second-tier government. It became clear that some adjustment or other had to take place in this sphere. In this change which has taken place and is in the process of taking place, it is not clear to me, however—I am not saying this in a provocative spirit—precisely what is to be replaced and how it is to be replaced. If one examines the hon the Minister’s speech, for example, one can identify two principles of constitutional planning which are ostensibly contradictory. The hon the Minister said:

… that the Government functions be executed at the lowest level of Government and that the higher levels of Government should as far as possible only be policymaking and monitoring levels of Government.

A little later the hon the Minister said:

Hierdie hervorming soos nou aangekondig, behels dus nie sentralisasie van gesag by die setel van die Regering nie.

I am not altogether sure whether that is the case. What we have here appears to me at a cursory glance like a centralization of authority and of power but a decentralization of functions so that, within the same structure or framework, functions are decentralized at lower levels but at the higher central level the administration of those functions has to be monitored and the policy in terms of which those functions are executed be determined. Consequently it is not a devolution of power or authority by which the lower levels of government receive a large measure of autonomy, there is no autonomy to the extent that what actually happens is that the powers of that lower level are monitored and determined by the central level. I think this is a principle requiring clarification in future when we begin talking about the entire matter of negotiation as such.

The hon the Minister, announced that provincial councils would disappear and that certain steps would be taken in filling vacancies. The hon the Minister discussed this with us informally, we went into caucus on it and we also thought it advisable to consult our provincial caucuses. As hon members can appreciate, there was not much time to do this. We are not happy with a system in which one fills vacancies merely by giving the right of nomination to the party which had filled that vacancy. We believe it is a bad principle because it does not test the change which has taken place in the political marketplace. It would have been more democratic and more correct to have created that opportunity. I can appreciate that the Government was faced with certain practical problems in this respect but we felt—and this was after consultation with our provincial councillors—that it would have been preferable to set a specific target date and after such a date one could have said that no further vacancies would be filled. This also holds problems but I think it would have been fairer.

The other possibility is naturally that the hon the Minister has the prerogative of deciding when he wishes to supplement it according to his judgment—naturally not a good principle either.

We can therefore not support a system in which one supplements vacancies merely by means of nomination by the party concerned which had held that post. That by way of a preliminary reaction to the hon the Minister’s announcement.

Mr Chairman, before I begin, I take pleasure in wishing Prof Andreas van Wyk and his staff everything of the best and in particular in congratulating Prof Van Wyk on his appointment. We are colleagues from our Stellenbosch days and even at that time we discussed constitutional changes and their political implications at some length. I am therefore looking forward to having an interesting debate, especially if those are the advisers in support of the Minister on constitutional development.

Mr Chairman, once again one finds oneself in a difficult situation. I now have the same complaint which I expressed towards the State President when we were discussing his Vote, namely that it is impossible to conduct a significant conversation on constitutional development in the light of the limited time at the disposal of this House. I think we should review this entire matter again in order to permit a decent debate to take place.

In the brief time at my disposal I wish to speak on only three matters. The first is a fundamental point of departure in the entire process of constitutional change; in other words, it embraces the entire matter of group participation. I wish to state a few views of principle on this so that there may be no lack of clarity between this side of the House and the other on how we feel and what our approach is when we embark upon a negotiating process. Against the background of our stand on this entire matter of group participation, I also wish to speak on our attitude towards negotiation and the negotiating process. The last few comments I should like to make deal with the matter of a declaration of intent.

There is no difference between this side of the House and the Government on the fact that various groups exist in South Africa, that is to say that ethnic, cultural and even racial groups exist; we do not differ with one another on that. Let me also say from the start that it would be of no avail if we said we did not acknowledge the existence of groups and that we did not believe in groups—there are groups. From the nature of the case this forms part of the political reality in which we live. We should therefore not permit it to become a point of contention now whether there are groups or not. Nevertheless a fundamental point of difference does exist between us and the Government on the nature of group participation and the role that group participation is to play in the constitutional process in South Africa. Let there be no doubt that that is a fundamental standpoint on which we differ with each other. We believe it is an anomaly—in truth it is contradictory—to say one can base one’s constitutional process on groups where people do not voluntarily identify themselves or associate with those groups. In other words, as soon as the Government of the day provides by means of legislation that the individual has no choice but to participate in the political process as a member of a specific ethnic or racial group, I believe it is following the path of an incorrect constitutional process. I should like to enter into debate with the hon the Minister in this respect.

Before I do this, however, I should first like to put a few questions. At the moment there are a number of documents available in South Africa emanating from the side of Government. One would like to have clarity on their status. I know that this is the State President’s address made at the beginning of the year—of that there is no doubt and we are therefore aware of the status of this document. We also accept it as party policy. Now there is a new one, however, which received a great deal of attention at the weekend from the Sunday papers, especially the Sunday Times. The question dealt with here runs: “En wat van die Swartmense?”


You should go to church on Sundays and not read that stuff! [Interjections.]


I read it today, Mr Chairman. [Interjections.] On page 15 of this document one finds:

The impression might easily be created that the Government and the National Party are without a policy—that until such time as we and the Black people have come to a decision about a future dispensation for all the people in the country the Government itself does not know where it is leading South Africa.

It is possible that such an impression may exist—I may as well say it now. [Interjections.] The document continues:

This is far removed from the truth. The Government has spelt out clearly defined points of departure which will be used as guidelines in the negotiating process. Most of these have already been spelt out, but for the sake of completeness are set out once more.

The first guideline mentioned is:

The group nature of South African society will have to serve as the point of departure for any future political dispensation.

Once again I have no objection to its serving as a point of departure providing it can take place by means of negotiation and providing it is clear that the groups involved in that process of participation are doing so voluntarily.

It is a fact, however, that since 1948 our entire constitutional structure has been created systematically by the government of the day on the basis of non-voluntary membership of those groups. Let me illustrate this very clearly because it seems to me that we are going to misunderstand one another here. Let us take the tricameral system in which we are now involved. The Coloureds are a racial category. They do not form an ethnic group; they are not a people; they are a racial category. The Government saw fit to incorporate that racial category structurally in the Constitution. The same applies to the Indians. The Indians are also a race—Asians. They are not a people or an ethnic group; there are Hindus and Moslems who are poles apart. These are racial categories which have been built in just as have the Whites. Nevertheless the participation of those people does not depend on ideological involvement; their participation is determined on a non-voluntary basis by their race. Whether they are capitalistic or communistic or nationalistic of socialistic is of no consequence. It is based on the fact that they can participate in the tricameral system only because they are Coloureds or Asians or Whites. That is why I wish to state it very clearly: This basis of participation in politics is fashioning a rod for our backs—we are going to have problems in future.

Let me illustrate this further. One of the cardinal points made by the State President in his address on the opening of Parliament was that the Black people could not be accommodated in the old homeland policy. Up to that stage the basis of the constitutional logic of the Government’s policy was the principle of ethnicity. It believed one could link the Blacks to the national states by way of ethnic ties. The Government believed that this had to eventuate whether they wished it or not. One of the stark realities the Government has had to accept is that this is unattainable. It does not work like that.

As soon as the Government abandoned that principle of constitutional planning—and in truth this is what has happened; I accept it had to be abandoned because it was unrealistic; it is one of the dilemmas of the CP that it clings to that unrealistic principle of creating a constitutional dispensation in South Africa—it destroyed the intellectual basis of its old policy. Now the question arises: What is the basis on which one should involve these people in a new framework outside the national states? Urban Blacks are certainly no ethnic category; once again we are introducing a racial category here. If one investigates who urban Blacks are, one finds they are people divided into different categories which are legally determined because they qualify for such division in terms of sections 10(a), (b), (c), etc. These are not people grouped on the grounds of a belief in a specific political policy or ideology; they are people categorized by the Government purely for administrative purposes. Now we want to base a constitutional framework on those categories—in addition on a non-voluntary basis.

This is a very important point of principle I am attempting to illustrate to the Government. Why is it important? If the Government is going to structure its constitutional framework on a racial basis—a Black local authority, a White local authority, a Coloured local authority, an Indian local authority—those structures become nothing other than platforms for the comparison of racial privation and privilege throughout South Africa.


Hear, hear!


That is what is going to happen.


Why do you say that?


I am going to tell the hon the Minister now. They are brought together at regional level—there are the Blacks, the Indians, the Coloureds and the Whites. What have they come to do there? Surely they are not going to discuss trivialities? They are going to draw comparisons: How do our residential areas compare with those of the Whites, the Coloureds and the Indians? What do our schools look like? How do we get a bite of the cake, of taxation, etc?


But that is destructive …


No, the hon the Minister is going to get a great deal of time to talk to me. I am simply putting it to him. Therefore, what we have there, are platforms for relative race privation or privilege. Conflict is built into the process of constitutional development—that is my fear. In addition it is done on a non-voluntary basis; those people have no other choice.

What is the other dangerous consequence, however? The other consequence of this is that voluntary participation in politics is being pushed out of Parliament and made unconstitutional. The UDF, the ANC and all those movements are permitted to be able to say: We are here voluntarily because we believe in this policy and uphold that point of view, etc. Voluntary association is therefore structured on such a basis that it cannot function within the constitutional framework in South Africa. Its other consequence is that the people who do come in, the Coloureds, the Whites, the Blacks and the Indians, are immediately categorized as racists and people participating in a racial structure. That is why they are left with a credibility crisis and they have no other choice—everyone does it. We, as well as the Coloureds, the Indians and the Blacks who will be coming in all do it by saying: Number one, when we get in there, we have to restore the voluntary nature of politics. That is precisely what has happened.

The first two Acts abolished were section 16 of the Immorality Act and the Prohibition of Mixed Marriages Act. Why? These are voluntary sexual relations and voluntary marital relations. The next Act which will come under fire is the Prohibition of Political Interference Act which deals with voluntary political association. The next one will be the Group Areas Act in order to promote voluntary residential association. This has to happen and it is no use saying one is going to build one’s constitutional structure on measures which become the object of reform in respect of the people who are coming into the structure. Can hon members appreciate that this is the dilemma I see?

Therefore the central question I put to the hon the Minister—and I am putting it in a spirit of debate so that we can clarify this matter with each other—is: How are we going to restore voluntary association? Now the hon the Minister will come back—I almost want to anticipate it—and say to me: But I did not create it: I found it like that. [Interjections.] The Whites were here and the Blacks were here and the Asians and the Coloureds were here. No, they did not simply happen like that—they were structured by laws. Then the cardinal question I wish to put to the hon the Minister is: We have a choice of constitutional developments—either we are going to stabilize those structures on the road ahead, in which case we can write Ichabod to constitutional development, or we can attempt, as it were, to dismantle those structures and replace them with new ones functioning on a voluntary basis. I am not saying this because I am a White but for the simple reason that I cannot see how we can launch a negotiating process because this is a cardinal point of departure. We have to obtain clarity on this.

This brings me to the second point—the matter of negotiation. I am prepared—and I have said it to the State President—to investigate how we could negotiate in this framework in which we find ourselves. We as Whites, however, have to obtain clarity on the matter of voluntary association. We have to ask ourselves how we are going to bargain with the other groups on the basis of this principle. I wish to say to the hon the Minister in advance that, if we think we can move outwards from a central forum, a Cabinet Committee or whatever and invite those people to bargain on the basis of a racially structured constitutional framework, we can forget about it. We can simply forget about it. Meanwhile we will have surrendered the initiative. That is the point I wish to put to the hon the Minister. We will have surrendered the initiative to the most radical elements in politics, who, although they reject racial participation, make a great fuss about voluntary association. That is why they are laughing because they say they can ignore those measures. We can say they are unparliamentary and unconstitutional but the fact is they make sense to an enormous number of Black and Brown people. They are the ones who are creating a credibility crisis for the people coming into this process. That is why I say to the hon the Minister—and there should be no lack of clarity on this—that I cannot enter a negotiating process if it means that negotiation is aimed at creating a sense of a false or artificial coalition. I cannot be involved in a negotiating process if it is merely an effort to put a friendlier face on separate development or apartheid. It is not going to work, Sir. I can be a party to a negotiating process if we are going to attempt to establish actively what the basis for future negotiation is going to be. That is why I want to save the Government and the hon the Minister time by putting it clearly to the hon the Minister that, if this participation in a negotiating process has to mean that we are now going to attempt to find ways of making the racial basis of the constitutional dispensation more streamlined, we will be wasting our time because it will be rejected. The signs are already obvious that it will be rejected. If we say, however, that we are prepared to invite people on the basis of a jointly evolved declaration of intent—and I emphasize “jointly evolved”—to participate in a bargaining process, I think there is hope for negotiation.

But what does that “jointly” mean? That is the last point I wish to sketch briefly. What is that joint declaration of intent?

Once again it does not depend on the policy of the Government or the PFP because in negotiation the crux of the matter is the possible area or basis for compromise and it is clear to me that three matters cannot be argued away.

The first matter which cannot be argued away is citizenship. It is true there are important trends and tendencies on the side of the Government. It appears to me that citizenship is a fundamental point of departure in any declaration of intent and we should settle it among ourselves as Whites before we can hope to talk to the Blacks, Coloureds and Asians.

The second matter is that in some way or other a joint constitution will have to be hammered out; it is not going to be possible to hammer out separate constitutions. I simply cannot see that this can happen and one will definitely not be able to announce it unilaterally.

The third matter is influx control. Influx control will have to go and we shall have to replace it with an orderly process of urbanization. The Government has said this but considerable obscurity remains. We are not sure precisely what it means, but it is a basis for negotiation—we can talk about it. If we therefore accept this as a possible point of departure and if we accept that we shall attempt to return the principle of voluntary association to our politics on the basis of those three factors—common citizenship, a joint constitution and the phasing out of influx control—one will find the natural diversity of South African politics manifesting itself. People will then come forward on a voluntary basis as members of groups. If it is to be structured on a racial basis, however, I want to warn that we are fashioning a rod for our backs which is going to make any negotiating politics impossible.


Mr Chairman, the hon the leader of the Official Opposition has made a most interesting analysis of—if I may put it this way—the dilemma of political solutions in Southern Africa. I shall return to that shortly. Allow me, for just a moment, to convey my sincere congratulations to Prof van Wyk who, as Director-General, has accepted the responsibilities of this new position. I wish him good luck and all the best in his official duties.

This Department is truly one of the departments that will, in years to come, have a most formidable task in trying—as the State President put it in his Opening Address—to maintain peace and prosperity in South Africa.

The hon the Minister announced that provincial councils would be abolished from the end of April to 30 June 1986. He indicated that certain new structures would take their place. Coming from Natal, I should like to react to this specifically, because we in Natal, in contrast to the other provinces, have been in a unique position for quite a number of years now. The hon member for Durban Point, who will also participate in the debate later, will probably also refer specifically to that.

In Natal, before the advent of Union 75 years ago, a special referendum was held to decide whether Natal would opt for federation or union. There was a two-thirds majority in favour of Union but over the years Natal has tried to maintain its own character.

For many years Natal has hesitated to become completely involved in the unitary system. This has particularly been the case since 1948 when the NP came into power. In terms of the 75 years, this has accounted for approximately half of South Africa’s history since the advent of Union. It was 38 years after the advent of Union and the NP has now been in power for 37 years.

The situation was as follows: When the NP came into power in 1948 and, therefore, exercised authority on a unitary level, a strong movement away from Union developed again in Natal. It took a great deal of time before that feeling disappeared.

I think the announcement made by the hon the Minister of Constitutional Development and Planning about the provincial councils, as they exist at present, being abolished next year, will still be eliciting a response in certain circles in Natal, but it will no longer be the virulent reaction that there would have been had this announcement been made 20 or 25 years ago. As recently as 1981 the NRP had as its slogan in the general election: “Keep Natal free.” It was still trying to trade on the distinctness of Natal. [Interjections.] I think the situation is totally different today.

Another interesting indication of decisions taken by the Government, as given by the hon the Minister of Constitutional Development and Planning, was his announcement that provision must be made, as the hon the Minister says, “regarding liaison with Black communities” on this new second-tier of government. This is put very carefully. I agree with the idea that there should be a linking up of responsibility, because the Black community does not want to be completely left out of participation; they want to be involved in responsible liaison, and in decision-making as well. We in Natal are prepared to be party to involving the Black people in liaison and consultation, too, based on a sense of responsibility.

In South Africa, however, we have the dilemma of our multinational character of smaller and larger minorities. This is exactly the same dilemma in which Natal found itself, in which the English-speaking majority found itself in 1948 when they felt that there was an Afrikaans-dominated NP in power against an English majority in Natal.

They will have exactly the same dilemma in agreeing on matters regarding the structural basis of extending constitutional development in Southern Africa. As it took 37 years to develop a different attitude in Natal, it will likewise be necessary for us to move slowly, so that we can agree on matters and work out formulas in which there will be no domination of one by the other, but where there can be responsible involvement in responsible decision-making. It is therefore right for the Black communities to be involved in responsible liaison on that second tier. I shall provisionally settle for that length of time.

The Chief Minister of kwaZulu recently took a stand with reference to a certain newspaper report in the Natal Mercury. In this connection, Chief Buthelezi said:

I demand an open, race-free society which is based on Western principles of democracy.

I can understand that he would want to make his point clearly in public. I want to analyse this, however, and say that I hope Chief Buthelezi will understand that the demands he has made cannot be accepted without further ado, not by the Whites in Natal and not by other Black communities either. In the first place, we are not dealing with “Western democratically developed peoples”. Blacks in South Africa have not yet, on average, reached that stage of development. I want to suggest that in a Western democratic system allowance is not made in any one country for the kind of one group to be king of the whole group too. Chief Buthelezi will probably also know that the Xhosas and the Sothos and the Tswanas and the Vendas, who have not accepted full independence, would not be prepared to be subject to a king who is king of the Zulus. So there is no easy solution in terms of which this Western democratic system could simply be transplanted to the multi-national situation in Southern Africa. There must be further development and movement in that direction. That much is certain. There is also, however, the important fact that we must not land ourselves in a maze of terminology that only confuses people.

Many people in South Africa—and I am referring particularly to the Blacks—do not completely understand the meaning of “federal” or “confederal”. [Interjections.] We cannot, in any case, simply transfer or transplant concepts that have certain meanings in developed communities to certain situations in Southern Africa. There would therefore be no point in intimating that we would get further co-operation on a confederal basis. We must try to find our own solutions to the situation in Southern Africa. Regardless of what we call then, we have to find systems in which we shall be able to co-operate with one another responsibly.

In conclusion I should just like to quote what the State President said. He said:

Op staatkundige gebied wil ek beklemtoon dat dit die Regering se ems is in sy soeke na vreedsaamheid en demokratiese oplossings wat aan die eise van billikheid en geregtigheid voldoen.

[Time expired.]


Mr Chairman, I should like to associate myself with what the hon member for Klip River said by telling him that there is a certain idiom used in politics today that is extremely confusing, not only to the Black peoples, but as far as it is used on that side of the House, to the White electorate in South Africa as well.

I should like to associate myself with the expression of good wishes and congratulations to Prof Van Wyk. We convey our best wishes to him and hope that he will spend a very fruitful and pleasant term in this very important and responsible position.

We had to listen quickly to the hon the Minister’s speech. One is therefore not able to react immediately to each point he raised, except for a few. In the first place I think it is not at all certain that as envisaged, there will be more decentralization and less centralization in the new dispensation. Perhaps centralization will simply be carried out in a more streamlined form in the envisaged structures. I quote the following from the text of the hon the Minister’s speech:

… that there should be a strengthened executive authority for dealing with general affairs at second level, possibly in divided provinces, in the form of an administrator, an executive committee with extensive statutory, subordinate, legislative and executive powers. This body will be directly answerable to Parliament for its handling of second-tier political, financial and administrative matters, via a special standing committee for the province concerned. This arrangement implies that Parliament will thus in future exercise parliamentary control at second level.

Mr Chairman, it seems to me that this will entail greater centralization and that the central authority will directly exercise its authority to a much further extent through the various components.

Mr Chairman, I do not think I asked initially for the privilege of the second half-hour. If it is still in order, I should like to request it now.


If there is no objection, the hon member may proceed.


Thank you very much, Mr Chairman.

In the case of vacancies the party whose member vacated the post concerned, will nominate the candidate. As far as I am concerned, what this will come down to is a side-stepping of the democratic process. Even at so late a stage in the history of provincial councils, a provincial by-election can still indicate a very clear swing in the choice of the electorate. We therefore do not believe it is very sensible to do such a thing. [Interjections.] Yes, we are thinking of the sort of thing that very nearly happened in Harrismith. [Interjections.]


A miss is as good as a mile, is it not?


That near miss is still going to prove a great embarassment to that hon Minister, Mr Chairman. [Interjections.]

In the discussion of constitutional affairs I should like to quote two extracts from what the hon the Minister of Constitutional Development and Planning himself said on previous occasions here in the House. They were statements that I think are very important; that are fundamental to our ideas but are no longer fundamental to the ideas of the National Party. There are statements, however, that I think they should reflect on once again.

The first quotation is from a speech by the hon the Minister here in the House on Monday, 26 January 1981.


What is wrong with you now? You are simply jumping back four years into the past!


That was a speech in which he expressed himself very strongly, as follows (Hansard: Assembly, vol 91, col 75):

But if one wants revolution in this country, one must question the right to self-determination of the White people.

Not take away; merely question!

If one wants revolution in this country, one must jeopardize the say of this population group.

Then he goes on to say:

… the fact that the Government has adopted a course of negotiation politics in this country, does not mean that it will avoid confrontation through the abdication of the Whites and civilized standards. There should be no doubt about that.

Mr Chairman, I appreciate the hon the Minister’s statement.

A second statement by the hon the Minister, to which I want to refer, was directed at the hon the Leader of the Official Opposition. It comes from a speech the hon the Minister delivered here in the House on Tuesday, 4 August 1981. He says, and I quote (Hansard: Assembly, vol 94, col 118):

Sir, surely it is not practicable to advocate in our society what the hon Leader is championing. The hon Leader seeks to establish a multiracial Parliament which will guarantee the interests of minority groups within the framework of a unitary state. I submit that this is unattainable in our society.

Mr Chairman, once again I agree with the hon the Minister, except that I want to add here—with reference to these two quotations—that although the hon the Minister said a multiracial Parliament was unattainable, we do in fact have one now; although he said a multiracial government was unattainable, we have one now—in a coalition government. [Interjections.] I do not know whether there are still any gentlemen here who doubt its existence.

Perhaps I ought to say, about revolution, that at present is being rather liberally linked to the CP. I just want to say that a government should not be frightened by threats of revolution. When a nation’s freedom and rights are at stake, the government should be prepared to protect that freedom and those rights with the power at its disposal. If there are revolutionary forces that want to undermine them or plough them under, the government must have the courage to say that it will utilize the power at its disposal, not only to maintain ordinary law and order, but also to protect the rights and freedom of the people who voted it into power. Secondly, the government should also not come along with feeble slogans such as “co-responsibility”, “South Africa first” and various vague assurances, thus depriving the people of their freedom piece by piece. This is what is happening. Furthermore, I should like to say that what the hon the Minister warned was not attainable, is now a reality.

I now want to say—and I do not want to make an issue of it—that the reaction among the farming community in the country regarding the maize price is a very serious reaction. I think there are members on the other side of the House who will have to account for their actions to someone or other, either in the maize area …


Order! I am not going to allow the hon member to discuss the maize price now.


Sir, I shall not make the gap too wide. I just want to say that the reaction to the maize price will be minor in comparison with that to signing away the White man’s political rights and powers. I want to give warning that we shall have to take note of that. [Interjections.]




I want to refer too to a publication that was recently issued. I do not think it is Sunday reading matter either. One has serious questions about it, even on a Monday. On page 16 of the publication, the author says:

Die ideaal waama ons strewe, is om ’n Suid-Afrika te skep waarin elke volk en volksgroep—ook die Blankes …

This is by way of an afterthought:

… ’n plek in die son sal hê sonder dat die een in Staat sal wees om enige ander te benadeel, oorheers of vemietig.

The author then adds:

Die ideaal is nog om te sorg dat die erwe van die vadere vir die kinders erwe bly.

I want to ask: What sort of guarantee is that? Is it applicable when large percentages of the Black peoples, who have their own states in which they can develop to full sovereignty and independence, but live in the Republic of South Africa, are given a common fatherland together with the Whites, the Coloureds and the Indians? The author talks of a common fatherland for Whites, Coloureds, Asians and almost 60% of the Black people who are accommodated here, who are regarded as a permanent part of this population and who are therefore part of political bodies within the Republic of South Africa. Secondly, I want to ask: Can one still talk of the “erwe van die vaad’re” when those “erwe” are being jointly governed by other peoples? One could ask: What do the “erwe”, to which this booklet refers, look like?

Does the following not sound familiar—I am quoting now from an NP propaganda document:

Watter spotterny is dit dan dat hierdie party …

That is the United Party:

… die kiesers probeer bangpraat met die gevare wat Bantoetuislande, of Bantoestans soos huile dit noem, inhou …

And then the following appears:

… vir die Blankbeheerde buurstaat waarin die Blankes volle heerskappy behou oor hul parlement, hul land, hul staatsdiens, hul leër en hul polisie.

These are things that live on in the memories of the people, and that the NP led people to understand for years was part of their heritage, a heritage that must be preserved. In an answer the then Prime Minister gave to a question by the then leader of the NRP concerning joint decision-making and co-decision-making on a higher level, he said:

Ek is egter nie bereid om op die hoogste vlak die beginsel van self-beskikkingsreg geweld aan te doen nie.

With that a principle, which had actually been implemented, was rejected. That was not the standpoint, but judgment was passed on it and there has been a political somersault in respect of this.

One could go on in this vein. I could show—but I have already done so on a previous occasion—how the present State President saw his way clear even to voting for a state within a state, if by doing so he could escape from what he termed the pernicious integration politics in South Africa.

I want to go further. I want to say one is making a mockery of the idea of the “erwe van die vaad’re” if the children of the fathers become part of a multiracial nation. Now we have it—it has been made public—and this is now the new standpoint: The nation is now comprised of everyone who lives within that country and here we have a multiracial nation. There are Whites, Coloureds and Indians, and with the addition of all the rest of the Black peoples outside the national states to this nation, one really has a concoction of a nation! What do the “erwe van die vaad’re” look like in such a situation?

I say further that one is making a mockery of total sovereignty with this consociational politics, with a multiracial coalition, with a minority veto and with the proportional representation of other races and ethnic groups in one’s government. There can no longer be any question of this. I think that in this respect the hon the Leader of the Official Opposition has at this moment indicated the weakness of the present position of the NP and the coalition government. He will see that according to the principle of individual choice, individual choice of one’s own community and pattern of conduct—he will not hold it against me if I say this—it is characteristic of the liberal ideology that the individual himself decides. Along that path there is no place for collective White bargaining, for collective White decision-making, for collective decision-making by Black peoples and collective Coloured decision-making. It is then an individualistic choice.

According to that argument it goes without saying that Acts such as the Immorality Act and the Prohibition of Mixed Marriages Act must go because they are still regarded from the standpoint of collective interests which must be protected.

I want to refer to the suggestion, which appears in the State President’s speech and has now also come to the fore in the hon member for Helderkruin’s booklet—the colours on the cover of the booklet are rather eye-catching—about the forum for discussion. I should like to make a few remarks about this.

The idea of a forum for discussion is a very poor substitute for what the PFP advocates on the basis of a national convention. I think it is a poor imitation of that idea. They do not want to touch a national convention, and now we have the forum for discussion. It is an open discussion but I honestly want to say that it means absolutely nothing.

It is against the background of an open forum, this forum for discussion, that I want to talk to the NP. The NP has already relinquished the idea of a White South Africa. According to the NP there is no longer a territory which the Whites can call is a White fatherland that only the Whites are governing. The NP has already relinquished a sovereign White Parliament. The NP has now done what the State President warned against a few years ago as being the opportunistic policy of the United Party, namely that of wanting to dislodge a sovereign White Parliament from its base.

The NP has already told the Blacks that they cannot fulfil their political potential, above the local level, through the national states. The NP is now assuring them that they cannot attain their full potential in the national states; they now have to fulfil their political potential here. In practice this means—we have just come from Harrismith—that as far as the neighbouring state of Qwaqwa is concerned, where even fewer than 10% of the citizens live within that state, one is telling 90% of those people that they cannot realize their political potential through Mr Mopeli’s government and Qwaqwa; they must be politically active here in the Republic of South Africa.

The NP has decided on Black political participation and a Black say at a higher level, and even at the highest level. I do not, however, want to repeat what I said in a previous speech. The NP is trying to do this, in spite of all the assurances of the past and the experience in many countries, in the past, of trying to reconcile various people and various ethnic groups into a unitary state. The NP is trying to force unlike elements into a unitary system.

The hon the Leader of the Official Opposition thinks this can be dealt with in this way but then he first has to blur the self-awareness, the national awareness, the ethnic awareness of the various groups, if not wipe it out completely, so that the people can be absorbed into a unitary state as one great collectivity. If the hon the Leader of the Official Opposition differs with me on that point, let me just ask him—and this is the important question—how he is going to negotiate the rights of the people, who identify themselves ethnically by voluntarily banding together, in terms of self-determination in such a unitary state. We are saying this cannot be done because one is dealing with First-World and Third-World people, with various ethnic groups, with various races in one area.

The State President has said that Black communities could not give expression to their political aspirations by way of the national states. We are now becoming a great multiracial unit, and the question now is how, practically speaking, to give the various groups fundamental and meaningful self-determination.

People and peoples who demand the right to govern are not interested in a forum for discussion, but in real political power. I have here with me speeches made by the NP over many years, and I could quote them, but unfortunately I do not have the time. I do, however, want to quote from a speech made by president Mangope, as follows:

Die Tswanas wil nie twee nasies wees, een in die tuisland en een in Soweto nie.

The present Government, however, is effecting that separation. It is now doing what Chief Gatsha Buthelezi warned against when he asked for Blacks in the national state not to be separated from the so-called urban Blacks. They must retain their ethnic ties.

The question now is whether there is going to be a division in one ethnic group enabling it to have a homeland and the best of that world, with the rest of that ethnic group in White South Africa laying claim to jointly governing the whole of the Republic of South Africa.

Let me put it this way: Dialogue is a good and necessary thing, but we are not interested in a forum, where in which conflicting aspirations and demands are made, if this is to be regarded as an answer to political demands. The Government must forget about politically reconciling various races or peoples of the First World and peoples of the Third World by means of a forum for discussion or in one parliament and one cabinet.

With all due respect we are warning the Government today—the hon the Minister has also addressed warnings on occasion—that it is kindling expectations of a unitary state with a Black majority government. It is further degrading the Whites to a minority group and is creating dangerous doubts in their minds. This is damaging to genuine nationhood among the Whites; it is damaging to healthy attitudes in South Africa; it is damaging to internal stability in South Africa; it is damaging to foreign confidence in this country of ours.


Mr Chairman, with all due respect to the hon member for Waterberg let me say that his speech was again simply the old kind of speech conjuring up spectres and propagating the ideology that if anything involving people other than Whites is done, this can only lead to the damnation of the Whites. We prefer, however, to tackle the future in a spirit of faith and confidence rather than to concentrate on or specialize in breaking down the good things that other people want to establish.

Limited time will unfortunately, or fortunately, not allow me to enter into a futile historical debate with the hon member about who said what and when they said it. What we must do, on the basis of firm principles, is to seek solutions that have some basis in reality. Of its own free choice—again with its hon leader as spokesman here today—the CP has completely eliminated itself in the process of finding a solution and has again brought itself to the fore as part of the problem by unnecessarily conjuring up spectres. When they take part in these discussions, particularly when they tell the world, from public platforms outside the House, what our policy supposedly is, one would like to ask them just to keep reality and the truth in mind—as strange as that might be to a party comprised of those members.

tin the debate on the political accommodation of Black aspirations it is terminologically wrong and misleading—sometimes dangerously so—to refer to the granting of political rights to Blacks as if Blacks were not inherently possessed of these rights and as if it was for us to decide whether they might have such rights or not. The question is certainly not whether Blacks have equal political rights with everyone else. As fellow human beings they obviously do. The question is simply how these rights can be accommodated. The accommodation of Black political rights within the broader constitutional context, both inside and outside the national states, will be the determining factor for the survival and self-determination of each of the other groups in South Africa as well. It is important to remember that in a heterogeneous society such as South Africa, constitutional development is an ongoing and dynamic process. What is sought is not a blueprint for eternity but a way in which, within the realities of our time, full participation can be granted to everyone in the processes that affect their lives.

*The NP’s fundamental principles, including those in regard to the constitutional dispensation in South Africa, have always been that one does not begrudge others what one demands for oneself.

Only with the concerted implementation of these principles, including the establishment of political structures for Black people, can our heterogeneous community be constitutionally regulated on a lasting basis, regardless of how the structures are adapted to meet the demands of the times. Only by not begrudging anyone what one demands for oneself, can one ensure that everyone is given his rightful place in the sun and prevent one group from only being able to come into its own by dominating another and infringing on its right to self-determination.

With that as a guiding principle, the constitutional dispensation must be given substance within the framework of the realities of our times and of our country. Within this framework, one of the most important regulating factors is the multi-ethnic nature of our society, including that of the various Black peoples, each with its own culture, traditions, search for and right to self-determination, similar to that of the individual White peoples in Europe. To disregard this fact would imply a naïve and serious disregard for reality. It is interesting to note that the CP and the PFP agree with each other that this party has supposedly deviated from its fundamental stand on this principle. What is interesting is that the PFP has consistently denied that this is a reality that one should bear in mind in the field of politics, but although it now pays lip service to that, in practice it still does not acknowledge it in the policy it advocates. On the other hand, in regard to its policy of partition, the CP gives full recognition to the reality of the various Black peoples, but as soon as one looks at the possible accommodation of Blacks within the RSA, it does not recognize separate peoples, but only one large Black mass, with fear completely dominating its reason.

The group nature of our society dictates that any constitutional dispensation should make provision for participation in the political processes in the group context. Only along these lines can numerical domination be prevented in the long run and can one ensure that every member of every group participates fully in those processes affecting his life.

Any structure will therefore have to make provision for the possibility of groups taking their own decisions, in the group context, on own affairs, supplemented by a joint say on matters of common concern. With this as a basis, it is clear that the national states still have a fundamental role to play. These states give expression to the reality of the separate existence of Black peoples, providing a basis for maximum self-determination on own affairs. At the same time this presents a basis on which co-responsibility for general affairs can effectively be implemented. Within the broad context it also gives expression to the principle of the delegation of powers to the lowest possible level so that government can thereby be brought closer to the people.

†The existence of the national states is an indisputable and irreversible fact. The influence of their leaders, not only within those states but also to a great degree over their nationals without, cannot be denied. I am not suggesting that the national states by themselves provide complete and equal participation in the political process for all Blacks. They do not. These states are, however, an existing fact that must be taken into account and for which a legitimate place will have to be provided in any future constitutional dispensation.

To enable these states to take up their legitimate position in the constitutional arrangement in Southern Africa, it is important that whilst the right to self-determination of these states must be acknowledged, they must still form part of the greater whole with an effective say on an equal basis with other groups in respect of matters of common concern. To achieve this, it is necessary to ensure that the areas of jurisdiction of these states are adjusted in order to ensure viable and governable entities. Provision must also be made for effective participation and representation of the nationals of these states outside the states’ borders where they identify themselves with these states and where such linkage is appropriate, effective and in accordance with the wishes of the majority of those concerned. Such an arrangement can, I believe, in many respects provide satisfactory results and be acceptable on condition that it does not deny those concerned—inside and outside the national states—their common citizenship and their participation in the economic benefits of South Africa as a whole. In this way the difference between ethnic and political association can be taken into account and recognition can be granted in proper perspective to the diverse character of our society. In practical terms, mechanisms must then be established for those persons outside the national states who do not identify with such states to enable them to have an effective say over their own affairs and an effective and equal say over matters of common concern.

*What is basic to the success of any dispensation is still its acceptance by the majority of the people whom it must serve. No dispensation in South Africa can, in the long run, remain in force unless it meets this requirement. A dispensation that does not have the approval of the majority of Black people will consequently not offer any solution in the long run either. The same applies, of course, to the approval for the system on the part of the other groups.

So this side of the House does not hesitate—as the hon member for Waterberg also indicated, in his quotation, the hon the Minister had said on occasion—to state unequivocally that it would only be a dispensation which guaranteed the right to survival and self-determination of the Whites that would be acceptable to us.

Working out an acceptable dispensation would probably be a difficult process, with little time to do so. I have no doubt, however, about its being possible to institute a dispensation in which everyone is treated equally. The endeavours of all reasonable people—who are still the majority amongst South Africans—are for peace, order, freedom and a decent standard of living. [Time expired.]


Mr Chairman, the hon member for East London City delivered a very interesting address and I would normally have been very happy to follow his subject. However, I hope the hon member will appreciate that as the leader of the NRP—the governing party—in the Natal Provincial Council, I have somewhat other things on my mind today in view of the statement made by the hon the Minister.

I would like first of all to take up a point raised by the hon member for Klip River where he indicates that this is a natural matter of evolution, that the Natal Government in the early days decided by referendum to become part of the Union, and so on. Of course I believe the hon member is merely trying to excuse this Government for doing by legislation what they have never succeeded in doing through the ballot-box, and that is, stealing the government of the Natal province. [Interjections.] They have never succeeded from the day of Union to this very day in being the government of the province of Natal. They are now, however, evolving a system whereby they can do this. [Interjections.] What do they say? They use these extraordinary words:

There should be a strengthened executive authority, directly answerable to Parliament, and the functionaries of this executive institution will be nominated by the State President.

If that is not a direct take-over I would like to know what it is. I do not care what kind of consensus has been achieved among members of provincial councils. As the leader of the New Republic Party in Natal I can tell you that we do not support these proposals. [Interjections.] I state that unequivocally, and wherever we can resist them, we shall do so. [Interjections.] All right, hon members may find it amusing and they may laugh. However, people who govern without the consent of the governed, as we are already finding with the Blacks, find themselves somewhat in hot water.

This Ministry has a very important function. They are going through the constitutional processes of change. On how this is done depends the sort of peace we are going to have in this country for many years to come. There has already been obvious ham-handedness in the handling of the Black situation, and this is why we have had these uprisings all over the country. I am not suggesting that this hon Minister is personally responsible for the handling of the Black situation, but the Government has collective responsibility.

The position is this: The way we handle the changes at local and provincial government levels is also very relevant to successful changes in our constitutional system. If there are people who feel they have been betrayed, I believe that those people are not going to be willing participants in any future efforts that are to be made.

It has been said by members of that party that we assisted them in the referendum to achieve a majority “yes” vote, and this is true. It has also been suggested that because we did that, we accepted these proposals concerning the provincial government. I am aware that that has been suggested but this is not true. We accepted and assisted the new Constitution on the basis that there would be changes in provincial and local government systems, of course, but also to incorporate and to bring into the provincial and local government systems people of the other race groups. We believe most emphatically that the provincial systems could have been retained and adapted to accommodate all the needs that were required. This system of provincial government was part of the process of Union in the first place. As has been mentioned by the hon member for Klip River, Natal came into the Union under certain circumstances as the consequence of a referendum. One of those circumstances was that there would be certain provincial autonomy in a number of areas.


It took £3 million to do that.


Never mind how much money it took but there were certain agreements made whereby Natal joined the Union, and I believe that the people of Natal will look upon any Natal public representative who supports the abolition of any real provincial autonomy as disregarding their interests. I am not talking about change. We would have had to accept change, it was desirable to have change, but to remove the autonomy of that province entirely—the same as in the other provinces …


Or the voice of its electorate.


… or the voice of its elected people, precisely. This is a very important point because 14 of the 20 provincial seats in Natal are still held by the NRP. One is held by the PFP and the other five by the NP.




Of course it is temporary because the entire system is going out through the window in a year’s time. [Interjections.] As far as we are concerned, we ask: Is this the sort of thanks that the NRP gets for helping the Government? There have been many people who have said one can never trust a Nat. This is a saying one hears right through Natal. [Interjections.] As far as I am concerned, I have fought these people and said: No, the Nationalists have had a change of heart. They are at last looking after all South Africans, not merely their own little group. However, I am now wondering whether my trust has been misplaced because we would have accepted the abolition of the provincial councils provided it had been clearly understood that the executive would have been a local executive, properly elected either directly or indirectly. However, there is no indication of that at all. This is going to be Big Brother saying: That man, that man and that man will be your bosses in Natal. This is what it is all about. [Interjections.] Putting it most simply, that is what we are being faced with—domination and dictatorship as far as we are concerned. Frankly, we do not like it and if they expect us to support this, they must have another think about it.

As far as the other levels of government are concerned, we believe if the provincial system had been retained and substantially modified, the other system of local government would have fallen into place naturally. The hon the Minister firmly believes that by offering autonomy in their local authorities to the Indian and the Coloured people, they will rush to grab it. He must be joking if he really thinks that. Seven or eight years ago they would have done so, but already in this parliamentary session members of the Coloured community have said flatly, both in their House and in public statements, that they do not want it. The hon member for De Kuilen’s brother in Swellendam indicated over the weekend that they do not want it. They want to have multiracial councils and this suggestion is unrealistic and impractical. However, all the way through this hon Minister is apparently following a system and a philosophy which is so typical of our unfortunate country—too little, too late! That policy may have worked when we in Natal first devised something similar seven or eight years ago. However, it is certainly too late now. The Coloureds have said they do not want it and they will not take it, and the Indians have said the same. I just do not blame them. They have seen that they have us on the run and they want full representation in local authorities or nothing. Is the hon the Minister going to say that they will have nothing? Is he going to say that the local affairs and management committee systems will remain? No, Sir, he cannot do that. [Time expired.]


Mr Chairman, the hon member for Umbilo said that we would understand if he did not follow the debate to date and talked about Natal. I think that it would not suit me to interfere in Foreign Affairs at this stage. I assume that he will excuse me if I leave it to my colleagues from that province and the relevant Minister to react to his speech.

I want to get back to the debate which was being conducted before the hon member for Umbilo delivered his speech. The hon the Leader of the Official Opposition and the hon member for Waterberg, the leader of the CP, delivered speeches. The hon member for Waterberg had more to do with national politics and in my opinion brought part of their philosophy strongly to the fore.

The hon member for Waterberg made a few statements which I should like to remind hon members in this House of, and these will also be based on my recollection of the words he used. He referred, inter alia, to the threat of revolutionary action, and stated that a government must not be afraid of this. But he said that when the freedom of the people is at stake, the government must do everything in its power to guarantee that freedom. That government must then attack the revolutionary forces with might and main. He also referred to the publication bearing the name of the hon member for Helderkruin, and in this regard said inter alia that that hon member had referred to a space for each national group—for the Whites too, the hon member then said as an afterthought. From the point of view of his philosophy it should actually have stated: What belongs to the Whites. As far as he is concerned everything revolves around the rights, protection and security of the Whites. As an afterthought, if possible, we can then also do something for the other people. This is the philosophy being disseminated by the CP members. [Interjections.]

The hon member for Waterberg also referred to the “heritage of our fathers”, over which there is now going to be joint government. He went on to quote a piece of propaganda from a while back—he did not mention the date—from a publication of the NP, and placed emphasis, inter alia, on the concept of “full sovereignty”, which was used in it. I think that this is actually the crux of the philosophy of those hon members and the CP. They really believe in full sovereignty. But sovereignty means that you rule over everything falling under your jurisdiction—including the people residing there.

*Mr C UYS:

It is only our own, Wynand.


Sir, those hon members always argue that only what is their own is at issue. [Interjections.] But they have never at any stage alleged that something which is not their own will not be present in that area too. They accept that there will always be Blacks, Coloureds and Asians present in that area. But they accept that only Whites must retain this full sovereignty. This is indeed the underlying principle of their philosophy. One can understand this, because it is a reaction to a fear, because if one seeks another system, one believes that one is going to be dominated oneself.

Seen from this point of view the choice consequently lies between domination and being dominated. But it is a futile debate if one considers these to be the only two possibilities, because if these are the only two possibilities there is no longer any suggestion of a democratic process. Then we must forget about that. If these are really the only two possibilities we must accept that democracy does not offer a solution.

But we are all in this House and we pride ourselves on the fact that we have democratic points of departure. We try to express them on the basis of a system and structures which fit in closest with our perception of the situation, but then I frequently ask myself whether we are not simply colouring in a picture which we do not really believe in, in order to conceal what we really do believe in.

There can also be another answer in this for everyone, namely really to go out and seek what we want—security; the security every groups wants, no matter how it is expressed. As a matter of fact this is the security the Whites also want; not as an afterthought, but equivalent to the security and the satisfying of their aspirations that other groups in South Africa really want.

If we look at what the PFP offers as its point of departure, through, the mouth of the hon the Leader of the Official Opposition, I think I would not be doing him an injustice or be quoting him incorrectly if I were to say that he placed emphasis on the point of departure of voluntary association and identification. He said—and in my opinion rightly too—that if we were to have these separate structures into which the separate groups would be divided, we would certainly have a platform on which the debate would be about relative hardship. The hon Leader of the Official Opposition must then immediately grant me that even if we were to have voluntary identification and association, and interest groups in the party-political sense were to come to the fore, the platform would still exist for the debate on relative hardships. Consequently I am merely trying to say that this is a debate we cannot escape from, no matter what structure we adopt.

The hon the Leader of the Official Opposition also said that he did not see his way clear to participate in this discussion in the forum and in the negotiating process if it is to give separate development a friendlier face. Whoever joins in this negotiation agreement is going to do so with his own motives and his own particular objectives. I would have liked to put the question differently.

Earlier the hon the Leader of the Official Opposition offered to act as a go-between in a discussion with the ANC. The objectives of the ANC are to take over control and power by violent means. The hon the Leader of the Official Opposition could just as well have said that he did not see his way open to participate in this negotiation process if the objective of the ANC in this negotiation process was simply to give domination and oppression from that quarter a cloak of democracy.

What the hon the Leader of the Official Opposition must actually say is that he has his own motives, namely to seek fairness and justice. But the hon the Leader of the Official Opposition cannot adopt these standpoints—the second alternative he put was also his standpoint—and then still demand negotiation. What he was actually saying was that if we all thought exactly alike it would be easy to negotiate. But if we all thought exactly alike it would not be necessary to negotiate. Consequently we must accept the point of departure that we are in fact also going to have the standpoint of the CP at the negotiating table. After all we know that they have other objectives and motives, but they must be part of that discussion; they have the right to participate.


They have the responsibility to do so.


Of course they also have the responsibility. [Interjections.] We all have that responsibility.

Another idea of the hon the Leader of the Official Opposition I want to refer to is the declaration of intent. He said that it had to be a declaration of intent that had been drawn up jointly. If I understood him correctly by this he meant that the Black communities also had to be part of this declaration of intent. This faces one with a problem, because the declaration of intent is aimed at opening the discussion wide and making it possible for people who must really be involved in the discussion and who are really relevant to the negotiation process to be involved in the discussion. But if this declaration of intent must be worked out jointly, it presupposes that those leaders have already been reached. This is the dilemma of the point of departure of a declaration of intent.

As a matter of fact I want to say that I think that many of the statements, including those in the State President’s opening address, were in a certain sense a declaration of intent. I do not want to debate whether or not they were received as such, but at least they hinted at the framework there was a movement towards, without spelling out any particulars. One can argue about whether this is adequate or whether it has shortcomings.

In the State President’s speech to which I have referred, I want to refer specifically to point 4, where the State President spoke about the Black communities and said that they could participate in the process as “political entities”.


Order! I am sorry, but the hon member’s time has expired.


Mr Chairman, I am merely rising to afford the hon member the opportunity to complete his speech.


The hon member for Randburg may proceed.


Mr Chairman, I thank the hon member for Hillbrow.

In point 4 of the State President’s opening address it is stated:

To avoid unnecessary fragmentation at the constitutional level the Government has further decided that in the longer terms efforts should be made to co-operate on matters of common interest within the same overall framework …

The Afrikaans concept is “oorkoepelende raamwerk”.

… with the various political entities that find themselves within the South African context.

In this speech—and in subsequent speeches—the concept of “citizenship” has been touched on, and the Government has intimated that it was prepared to negotiate on citizenship. I should like to say a few things about this before I touch on other aspects.

In the first place I want to point out that within the scope of the concept of “citizenship” the concepts of “nationality” and “citizenship”—sometimes also separable—are distinguishable-—nationality is a concept of international law, which has to do with the connection between states, through which one state confirms to another state that a certain individual belongs to it and that it accepts responsibility for that individual’s travelling facilities, his protection abroad, the exchanging of currency by him, and so on, while citizenship has to do with the relationship between the government and the subject inside the relevant state. It is in fact an aspect of constitutional law itself. Now I want to say—and perhaps in this regard I am addressing the hon the Minister—that the concept of “nationality” can resolve one problem of the TBVC countries, namely the facilities of their citizens abroad, if South African nationality were to be granted to them. But if nationality is all that Black people acquire, we are really not going to get anywhere.

Consequently when we talk about citizenship, I accept that we are in fact talking about citizenship which is being considered for all Black people; at least those who at present find themselves within the borders of the Republic of South Africa and not in the TBVC countries. Actually I do want to say that we will have to give attention to this as well in order to ascertain whether something cannot be done about this. The dilemma we have is that the geographic unit which we knew as the Republic of South Africa in 1961 as against the geographic unit which we know as the Republic of South Africa today, has not actually placed us in a better position as regards the ratio of White to non-White, in spite of the independence of the four TBVC countries. The ratio is still more or less 1:5. Even when we look at the TBVC countries, we find that 50% of their citizens find themselves inside the borders of the Republic of South Africa.

At the risk of being branded a conservative …



*Mr C UYS:

That is not possible!


… I want to state a few reservations in this regard. These are things which are causing me problems. The first of these is that if in future we are going to work on the basis of a strict separation on a geographic basis, where boundaries are going to determine which people form part of which system, we are going to divide nations. Then in effect we are going to be bring about a situation in which the Xhosa of Transkei—the person living in the Transkei—will in fact effectively live his life to the full there, and, on the strength of his citizenship, will be a citizen of his government, whereas the Xhosa outside the Transkei—although he is still part of the Xhosa group—will find himself in a government-subject relationship with the government of the Republic of South Africa.


He, therefore, has two governments.


No, the separate people have separate governments. But I am now talking about people from the same national group.

The second danger I see in this, is in fact with regard to those people who do not feel themselves to be part of the state—we can call it the national state—which has become independent. They can so easily—particularly against the background of relative deprivation or disadvantaging—polarize more strongly as a Black group against a White group.

In the third place no partition idea will ever place us in the position where we will only have White people in a certain region, while we only have Black people in another region. It does not matter how that partition is approached—even if we were to copy the Sabra model—in the end it will not change the figures dramatically either because in the process of urbanization we find that the Black people simply urbanize too, in precisely the same place as the White people urbanize—around employment opportunities and around infrastructure. This is after all the pattern of urbanization.

Of course total partition is not feasible either because, so I believe, we accept that forced resettlement as a general policy belongs to the past. In the fourth place, I believe that we have also accepted that the solution does not lie in the fact that those persons who reside here must realize their political rights via their national states. We have accepted that they in fact have political rights in the areas in which they live.

Having come this far I should also like to refer back to the concept of “entity”, and I want to express the fear that we are perhaps relying too strongly on the idea of single geographic enteries instead of having an overall constitutional approach to the problem.

I want to argue that it is in fact feasible for us to design models in which ethnicity can in fact play a role, in which Zulus can associate with Zulus, in which we therefore deal with certain functions in a different way, functions which need not necessarily be dealt with geographically. In the second place I want to argue that we must in fact continue with the approach of maximum autonomy for areas in so far as functions can have a geographic content and can be exercised geographically. In the third place, reverting back to the first point, I also want to say specifically that I myself am seeking and want us to continue to seek a situation in which the functions of group rights can be handled at a national geopolitical level. I am not only referring to own affairs, I am also referring to joint decision-making in which we can embody self-determination with regard to those affairs which are sensitive and which cannot be handled on a geographic basis.

Once we have achieved this, as far as I am concerned, a few things will come to the fore from which we can benefit and with regard to which people in the CP and the PFP can move closer to the Government’s approach. In the first place I think that we can in fact satisfy the need for a feeling of security which is also being demanded by Whites. I think that we can allay many of the fears of the people to the far left and to the far right in the spectrum of White politics. In the second place, in this way we can also satisfy the security and aspirations of Black people outside the national state. In the third place we can allay the fears of the national state that people in those states are going to lose their South African citizenship, while they can still retain maximum geographic autonomy with regard to decision-making which is in fact applicable there.

As far as the TBVC countries are concerned provision can also be made for their need for a greater whole, a need which is being expressed by everyone. The hon member for Waterberg referred to a quote by President Mangope. He did not mention when it was said, but I suspect it was said before independence. Consequently the need also exists in the national states and in the independent states to be part of a greater whale. In the fifth place ethnicity will now indeed have the opportunity really to be utilized as ethnicity, even if it is in respect of limited functions. Lastly there is the advantage that international recognition for the entire system suddenly becomes a possibility because the overall framework to which the State President referred, will in fact be accommodated while we are maintaining maximum autonomy.

How does on set about achieving this? I want to ask the hon the Minister that consideration should be given to beginning to work from both sides. I assume that this is being done, but perhaps we should be more aware of the fact that we can simultaneously deal with the parts rather than only working upwards from the parts to the greater whole, that one must therefore work from two sides. On the one hand one can allay the demands and on the other one can make a success of the lesser systems, the lower government systems such as local government, if there is a system in which local government is answerable to a higher level, if in other words it can derive part of its legitimacy from a higher authority coming from its own group.


Mr Chairman, it is always a pleasure to listen to the hon member for Randburg because he often delivers some of the most stimulating speeches in the House. I also think he made an interesting contribution this afternoon to our thinking on this matter. It stands to reason that the hon the Leader of the Official Opposition will react to some of the points the hon member for Randburg touched on. Just allow me to comment in passing on some of those points.

I agree with him wholeheartedly—I have said this here often—that we ought not to confuse the concepts “nationality” and “citizenship” in an endeavour to escape the problem of Black political participation. This is actually his message, if I understood the hon member for Randburg correctly, in the sense that although we would have a common nationality, this would offer solutions only on a very restricted level to the problems the Blacks are experiencing.

The hon member for Randburg also talked about the problem he is struggling with, that of peoples being divided when a distinction must be made between, say, the Xhosas inside and outside Transkei. I want to reiterate that we can quite easily solve those problems to a certain degree by offering people a choice as far as their citizenship is concerned. This is the case—surely it is as plain as a pikestaff-—particularly if we take into account that it was certainly the minority of Xhosas who expressed themselves in favour of independence for Transkei. This applies, too, to all the other areas. To say now that because Transkei is independent we have this struggle in connection with citizenship seems to me to be putting the cart before the horse. We are saying give the people a choice so they can decide what they want to be.

The hon member for Randburg, like the hon members of the CP, spoke about the concept of partition. If I understand the expression “partition” correctly, it means partition taking place on the basis of joint deliberation and agreement. Partition, as we have thus far regarded it in South Africa, and in accordance with which the White Parliament has consistently indicated that such and such areas will be available to Blacks for occupation, is not partition. Partition is an agreement among groups.


Partition will of course have to take place eventually on the basis of parliamentary authority.


Yes, that is true, but I am saying there was no agreement, there has never been a genuine agreement between Whites and Blacks in South Africa that one section would be a White area and another section a Black area. Nor were the Blacks allowed to choose which area they wanted. If that were to happen, it would be partition. We cannot, therefore, in all honesty use the concept “partition” for the dispensation we have in South Africa.

The hon member for Randburg also said that it was clear that political rights could not be given via the national states to Black people resident outside the national states. In this connection the State President himself referred to the problem. Of course we agree with that, but I should still like us to start spelling out what political rights must be given to those people outside the national states.

I agree with the hon member, too, that we shall have to start working on both sides. If we really believe that we can solve the problem of Black local government by beginning there and not liaising on a wide front, I am afraid that that Black local government will certainly not function properly or be acceptable to the Black people either. That seems to me to be a sober fact.

This brings me back to the whole question of division between two types of Blacks and the remarks the hon member for Klip River made when he quoted, I think, Chief Minister Buthelezi as supposedly having said that we should not divide the Zulu nation—this is the way the hon member interpreted it—by giving the Zulus outside the national states rights that the Zulus within the national states did not have. I am sorry that the hon member for Klip River is not here at the moment.

What Chief Minister Buthelezi meant was that the Zulus within the national state kwaZulu have just as much right to and claim to participation in the central Parliament of the Republic of South Africa as the Zulus who live outside the national state. What he means is that we should not create insiders and outsiders by telling the Zulus in the White part of the country that they are getting representation in Parliament and telling the Zulus in kwaZulu that they are being excluded. I want to say, in all fairness, that I think the hon member for Klip River actually misconstrued the Chief Minister’s statement.

There are quite a number of things one wants to say. I should very much like to come back to several statements by the hon member for East London City. I should really first come to the important announcement the hon the Minister made here regarding the provincial system, and then comment on it. We shall obviously need time to discuss the full implications of abandoning the provincial structure, or whatever one wants to call it.

In the limited time I have had to study what the hon the Minister said, the picture gave rise to a large number of questions. On the one hand it is being said that the present functions of the provincial councils are, as far as possible in terms of the own affairs and general affairs idea, being shifted onto the Minister’s Councils, but on the other hand it is being said that a whole lot of functions from the top echelons are going to devolve to the second tier. Until we know which functions are going to devolve, we cannot express an opinion on the matter. There is also something else bothering me. The hon the Minister said a second tier was being created that would consist of an administrator and executive committee members who would have wide statutory and other subsidiary powers, which they would be able to exercise by means of regulations. At the same time he said that the implementation of those powers would be subject to parliamentary control via a standing committee. How this is going to function in practice is not clear to me. On the one hand it is being said that they have wide powers, but if this means that after the administrator and the executive committee have exercised the functions, they have to report to the standing committee about the regulations they have issued …


But do you not believe in legislative controls over executive authority?


Yes. Who is making the laws in this case? If this means control by the standing committee after the laws have already been made, we are dealing with a dictatorship, because this then means that the administrator and executive committee have the right to do exactly as they want until the standing committee, at some time or another, considers the legislation that has been passed.

A further problem is that there is no clarity over what authority they will exercise. There are a great number of questions in this connection that we hope will be put to the hon the Minister in the course of this debate. At this stage, however, I cannot express an opinion on the full implications of the proposals.

I want to return briefly to a few of the remarks by the hon member for East London City. His basic point was that the NP is saying that one must not begrudge others what one demands for oneself. The simple fact is that if that statement is carried to its logical conclusion, it means that the Blacks must be represented in this Parliament. We cannot say that we do not begrudge others what we demand for ourselves, and then say that we can have a seat on the body that passes the laws and that Blacks may not. That is, after all, the logical implication of that statement, and we cannot get away from it.

The hon the Leader of the Official Opposition posed some fundamental problems here with reference to the use of the terms race, groups, etc that deal with the diversity of people. Neither the hon member for East London City nor the hon member for Rand-burg replied to this point effectively. My hon leader has said that we cannot structure a constitution on the basis of a group distinction between race and colour, because we would then be creating severe problems for ourselves. [Time expired.]


Mr Chairman, the hon member Prof Olivier made particular mention of the fact that provincial councils, as we know them today, will be phased out in time as announced by the hon the Minister. I am sure we all agree with the hon the Minister in the appreciation he expressed towards these councils which have fulfilled an important function over many years and have been an important facet of the constitutional structure of the country.

We have to accept that the tasks carried out by provincial councils over the years have decreased since the financing of such councils by means of subsidies received from the Central Government. Gradually many of the tasks of provincial councils became an issue because the policy was determined at national level. Consequently the importance of their legislative and budgetary function—as they also no longer had important sources of taxation at their disposal—declined. Upon this occasion, however, we wish to express exceptional appreciation for the important work done over the years by these institutions.

I naturally also have great sympathy with the hon member for Umbilo, an ex-colleague who worked for years at provincial level too. Psychologically and politically this is naturally a great loss to his party which governs in Natal at provincial level. I think my good old friend, the hon member for Umbilo, should now accept facts. This is the course of events in this country and forms part of the process by which we are entering a different dispensation and, although we have strong sentiments for that old provincial system, I think we should accept it in the best interest of the country.

The hon member Prof Olivier also referred to this matter and mentioned certain details he required. The hon the Minister will probably provide the necessary clarification. The fact is that if there are no longer any elected provincial councils one has to deduce they will also no longer have legislative powers, etc. But I shall leave it at that.

I should like to make a few comments on local authorities because they will play an increasing role in the government of the country. The question therefore arises whether it is advisable that this system be politicized. This is not prescribed by law or determined by anybody but will naturally be determined by the action of the various political parties. What is the present state of affairs? In most metropolitan areas or large cities, city council elections take place on a party-political basis. Sometimes this is done clandestinely by attaching some name or other to it such as that of a ratepayers’ association or an action committee or whatever. It is present, however, and I think it is only realistic to accept that it will remain so.

As regards country towns, especially the smaller ones where political parties are usually not officially involved in town council elections, the question arises whether it is advisable for them to be totally politicized. It does happen that voters consider the candidates’ party affiliation or membership of political parties when they make a choice for town councils on polling days. The question is, however, whether it is in the best interest of the medium or smaller country towns to hold an election entirely on party-political lines.

The question is therefore: What are the disadvantages and advantages of such a dispensation? I first want to refer briefly to the disadvantages and then I shall attempt to discuss the advantages. In the first place, knowledgeable and useful people from professional and business ranks can for obvious reasons choose not to become involved in the party-political action. This also applies to officials and teachers who will then be excluded in such a case; even ministers of religion can become involved. Municipalities are basically institutions rendering service and broad national policy is usually not so seriously involved in decision-making in those councils. In smaller communities there is good co-operation in the interest of community life. Official party elections will have a disruptive effect and could also be an embarrassment to municipal officials.

Interest in municipal elections is normally not exceptionally great; it is doubtful whether political parties will succeed in stimulating this participation. Because of general elections and countless by-elections for members of Parliament, great demands are already made on political parties as regards canvassing and the attendant financial obligations. Municipal elections will therefore cause even greater demands.

I wish to refer briefly to possible advantages this can hold if done on a political basis. The selection of candidates by political parties can be advantageous in the sense that the selection will be more thorough and possibly contribute to the quality of candidates. Party discipline may stimulate candidates to greater dedication because party discipline will then be exercised over them. City councils controlled by the NP will promote co-operation with the central authority. The conclusion one reaches from these advantages and disadvantages of the politicizing of local government is that political parties will do country towns no favour in insisting on official political party participation in municipal elections.

This has already reared its head here and there where the CP has involved itself. The CP disrupts matters everywhere—be it school boards, school committees or local government bodies. [Interjections.] It is a fact that these people wish to get a foot in the door somewhere and they do not care whether they disrupt community life in the process. As far as our country towns are concerned, I really think it is not in the interest of those towns that political voting should take place when town councillors are elected. [Interjections.] The fact is that these people, the CP, who are reacting in this way, are only offering a solution in the form of a policy based on theory. They certainly have no practical solution and they know this too. [Interjections.] The electors will catch them out. The CP knows it is a theoretical solution—it cannot apply it in practice.

I wish to say that communities in rural areas have always co-operated well at local government level—and I was involved with them for a long time. Those communities work together, whether it is the farming community or whoever, and I hope political elections are not going to disrupt and upset those communities unnecessarily. [Time expired.]


Mr Chairman, I am very pleased to follow the hon member for Welkom. He pointed out the advantages and disadvantages attached to politicizing at local government level in most a most knowledgeable way. I think, however, that the functions which are ultimately going to be allocated to local authorities will determine the basis on which these members will be elected.

I wish to return to a statement made by the hon member for Waterberg. He said that if one wished to accomplish constitutional unity, one of necessity had to dismantle ethnicity or group commitment—one had to level it, he said.

Strictly speaking this is not altogether correct. If, for argument’s sake, one were to examine a country like the Soviet Union, one would see that its constitution accommodates 62 nationalities. I think one may say that ethnicity and group commitment is alive and well in Russia. [Interjections.]


What a comparison!


I think it is a good comparison. At the same time I also wish to suggest to the hon the Minister that it would do no harm to peep slyly at that constitution as a possible solution to our own constitutional problems. I have a booklet here with the title The Soviet Parliament: How it works. [Interjections.] The hon member for Barberton would do well to read it—he may perhaps then be converted to other points of view.

I wish to contend that our descendants will not be able to escape the consequences of political and socioeconomic decisions we take today. I say this because today we cannot escape the results of political and socioeconomic decisions taken in the past. I wish to mention only one example. In spite of the fact that it was never the policy of the National Party to acknowledge the permanence of Blacks in the RSA, that permanence is now being recognized but there is a good reason for this. This recognition is the inevitable consequence of two socio-economic decisions made at the beginning of this century. When White farmers decided to make use of cheap, available Black labour on their farms, the door was opened to a flow of Black people to agricultural areas to such a degree that General Hertzog exclaimed as early as 1912 that, if such a condition should continue, one would no longer be able to speak of a White country. What was the result, however? This influx continued and to such an extent that we find up to four million people in these agricultural areas today. No measures taken—not General Hertzog’s squatter laws of 1930 nor Dr Verwoerd’s squatter laws of 1950—could bring about a numerical change in this situation.

Yet another decision still influences us all. When South Africa became industrialized and it was decided to make use of Black labour in industry as well, it again caused a rush of Black people who established themselves in areas about White urban complexes. I believe this resulted in approximately six million people finding themselves in these areas today. Again it should be emphasized that all efforts—in spite of those of Dr Verwoerd as well to channel these people back to their own areas—have failed. That is why I believe we should accept it as a fact that little of what we do today can cause those people to return to their original states. All that is left for us to accomplish is to see that the people who are still in those states remain there.

Nevertheless this will demand imaginative decentralization and revolutionary consolidation, especially as regards kwaZulu. When the Tomlinson Report recommended in 1956 that R208 million be spent on development of the homelands, it was said that this placed too great a burden on the shoulders of the taxpayer. I do not think we should make the same mistake as that made 29 years ago. All I wish to say is the following: For the reasons I have mentioned, the permanence of Black people is a fact and that permanence will have to be reflected in future constitutional models. I believe this permanence can be accommodated only in two ways and they are on the basis of self-determination in own affairs and co-responsibility as regards affairs of common concern. Local government institutions are an important component of self-determination in own affairs; in fact, I think they are the foundation of future constitutional development—for Black people outside the national states as well.

Unfortunately it is a fact that there are forces at work today to cause the failure of this third-tier government of the Black people. I think every effort should be bent upon bringing about the success of this third-tier government. Reasonable Black leaders should be enabled to improve the standard of living of their people in urban residential areas dramatically without fear of intimidation. We dare never permit a perception to arise among Black people that petrol bombs have greater bargaining power than negotiation.

I also think it has been accepted as a guideline that future structures for self-determination in own affairs do not have to be identical. In this respect I wish to suggest, to the hon the Minister too, that the possibility of city states with reference to a place like Soweto as well will also remain a part of the negotiating process. I think another possible structure for self-determination in own affairs to which attention should be paid is the territorial expansion of independent or self-governing states to cities or areas within the Republic of South Africa. This will obviate the problem that self-governing states have no jurisdiction over de jure citizens who live or work in the Republic of South Africa.

As regards co-responsibility in affairs of common concern, I wish to make the following comment: From the nature of the case I do not think the specific model or structure in which this co-responsibility should be accommodated can be spelt out now because it is a process of negotiation. Nevertheless for the sake of argument I think such a structure could be patterned on the permanent secretariat for the co-ordination of co-operation between the Republic of South Africa and the TBVC states. It could also be patterned on multilateral Ministers’ Councils which are currently functioning excellently.

I wish to emphasize, however, that it is not of paramount importance what these structures look like. As far as I am concerned, they should fulfil two requirements. The principle of separate representation should apply there and there should be a decision-making process not based on one man, one vote. If one takes the multilateral Ministers’ Councils which currently decide on matters of common concern, it is interesting that these councils have come to important decisions without even having had to vote on any issue a single time. I think one should continue to bear that in mind.

I wish to close with this comment. The Danish philosopher Kierkegaard defined faith as a leap into the dark. He took Abraham as an example and said Abraham had moved away without a map and without a guideline but had arrived on the grounds of his faith. I think we can also arrive constitutionally. We are not quite as badly off as Abraham; we have guidelines. I think, if we move out with the assistance of these guidelines and on the strength of our faith, we will arrive constitutionally.


Mr Chairman, the hon member for Randfontein tried to make a case as to why Blacks should also get certain political rights. He said there was an influx of Blacks who came to work in the White areas. They remained here, they were declared permanent and now they have to get their political rights. Now I want to tell the hon member that the Indians came here from abroad as labourers to do certain work.


They have attained permanence now, have they not?


They have attained permanence and the NP has given them a chamber of this Parliament. Today they have a seat in 26 multiracial standing committees and they have a representative in the Cabinet. I want to tell that hon member if permanence was the reason the NP gave the Indians political rights, what moral right does the NP have to give the Blacks a different form of representation here? [Interjections.] The Indians came from abroad and the Blacks came over the borders to come and work here. [Interjections.] They have no moral right if they do it in this way.

The hon member for Welkom was very concerned about official participation in elections. I understand why the hon member is afraid of that. I want to tell him that the NP put up an official candidate in a recent municipal election in Kuruman, and they got a proper hiding from Ampie Coetzee, the CP chairman. An MPC also stood as an official candidate of the NP in Calvinia, and he got a hiding. In the Algoa constituency, in Port Elizabeth, an NP chairman and a CP chairman stood against each other. The CP got 700 votes and the NP 261. [Interjections.] I think perhaps that is the reason for the hon the Minister’s announcement today that these vacancies should be filled by appointments.




Sir, that hon meat inspector must please keep quiet while I am speaking. [Interjections.]

The hon the Minister announced the disappearance of the provincial councils today—the destruction of a White second-tier government. The statement reads that the new second-tier government will deal only with general affairs. An administrator, with a strengthened executive committee, will manage general affairs on the second tier of government. This executive committee and its administrator will, according to the hon the Minister, be appointed by the State President. According to NP policy and according to this step the State President can appoint a Coloured, an Indian or a Black as the Administrator of a province or as a member of the executive committee. I now want to ask the hon the Minister to tell me whether he is also going to appoint Coloureds and Indians to these executive committees which now have to execute certain tasks on the second tier of government. Perhaps the hon the Minister can tell us. Very well, the hon the Minister is indicating that he will tell us a little later. I shall be pleased if the hon the Minister would reply to us on that point.

When we were still in the NP, we always said that we had the solution to the political future of the Blacks. We could give everyone a precise reply as to where we were heading as far as the Blacks were concerned. [Interjections.] We stumbled in the NP, however, when the future had to be spelt out for the Coloureds and the Indians, because we had rejected an own fatherland for Coloureds and Indians as politics that was not practical and we had rejected integration and power sharing in principle. Because the NP had rejected the only two alternatives as solutions, we in the NP were in a dead-end as far as Coloureds and Indians were concerned. In 1982 State President Botha ended the situation in respect of the Coloureds and Indians, however, when he decided—and a large part of the NP followed him—on the course of political integration with Coloureds and Indians. The tricameral Parliament, with its multiracial standing committees, was established and at present South Africa is being governed by a multiracial coalition Cabinet.

I shall now read the following on page one of this new booklet of the NP:

When the new dispensation for Coloureds and Indians was instituted, everybody asked: And what about political rights for the Black people?

When we were still in the NP, we always said that we had the answer to the question concerning the future of the Black people. That is what we said. Today the NP says: We have the solution to the political future of the new South African nation, which consists of Whites, Coloureds and Indians; we must now seek a solution to the political future of the 10 million Blacks outside the national states. NP members of Parliament who summarily rejected power-sharing and integration with Coloureds and Indians, together with Dr Verwoerd and Adv Vorster, today are disciples with State President Botha of power-sharing, and therefore of political integration with Coloureds and Indians. For them separation in respect of Coloureds and Indians has been reduced to separate schools and separate residential areas. Now a political solution has to be worked out for Blacks.

A Cabinet Committee has worked out a plan for the political future of the Coloureds and Indians. Since 1977 the plan has been adapted to such an extent that it has taken shape in the Constitution of 1983. A Cabinet Committee, consisting of NP Ministers, compiled a plan, and adapted it to the situation we have today, in which we have a multiracial tricameral Parliament with its multiracial standing committees and a multiracial Cabinet. Now the Cabinet Committee has been appointed, under leadership of the hon the Minister of Constitutional Development and Planning, to work out the political future of the 10 million Blacks outside the national states—Blacks whose political future has suddenly become a problem under the liberal government of State President Botha.

What does this Cabinet Committee that has to work out a political future for Blacks look like? What does it look like in comparison with the previous one which has to work out a future for Coloureds? The hon the Leader of the Official Opposition, the Labour Party and all the Coloured opposition parties, the hon the Chairman of the Ministers’ Council of the House of Delegates and Solidarity all sit in the Cabinet Committee of which the hon the Minister of Constitutional Development and Planning is the Chairman. There are the parties of the House of Representatives and the House of Delegates together with the PFP, and they have expressed themselves in favour of bringing Blacks into the Parliament of South Africa. The State President has announced that this Cabinet Committee will act as a core forum in the negotiations with Black leaders.

In Rapport of 21 April it says that the hon the Minister of Constitutional Development and Planning says the Cabinet Committee is the key body for further constitutional development in the sense that it is the committee that will have to do the recommendations. A Cabinet Committee is the key body, according to the hon the Minister of Constitutional Development and Planning. It is the key with which the future constitutional participation of Blacks will have to be unlocked. If the known statements of the Government are looked at, the rulings of the Cabinet Committee hold far-reaching implications for the political participation of Blacks in the Government of the Republic.


That is true.


Yes, the hon the Minister says it is true. He says it is true that it holds far-reaching implications. [Interjections.]

There are statements such as that Blacks are becoming a permanent part of the South African population, there is the Government’s standpoint that one country can have only one Government, there is the Government’s decision that full individual right of ownership can be pursued for Black communities and Blacks who qualify for the 99-year leasehold, there is the Government’s standpoint that Blacks do not necessarily lose South African citizenship as the result of a national state’s becoming independent, there is the State President’s announcement that Blacks in South Africa have an own right and should have a claim to participation on a higher political level, and there is the State President’s announcement that Blacks will have representation in regional services councils, a third tier of government, together with Whites, Coloureds and Indians.

I want to repeat that the rulings of this multiracial Cabinet Committee on the political future of the Blacks hold political implications for the Whites and the other peoples. What the Government is going to do with the political rights of Blacks will have a determining effect on the future of the Whites in this country.

We have seen how the 1977 proposals which made provision for three Parliaments and rejected power-sharing, are being adopted by the NP Government to a multiracial tricameral Parliament with its standing committees and its multiracial coalition cabinet. We are witnesses of the steamroller action of a liberal coalition government which is flattening one separation act after another and which is getting rid of the cornerstones of separate development blow by blow. We are witnesses of how people who now have the leadership of the NP in their hands have undergone a total change in policy, standpoint and principle. In this way they have the changed the NP to such an extent that the Progs can agree with them today.

If the NP can bring about a unitary state with a system of one man, one vote—on separate voters’ rolls—in respect of Whites, Coloureds and Indians, and can bring about a unitary government, one can imagine what the result will be of a Cabinet Committee under the chairmanship of the hon the Minister of Constitutional Development and Planning with representatives from Coloured and Indian parties. It will lead to Black majority government in South Africa. [Time expired.]


Mr Chairman, the hon member for Kuruman, like the other hon members of that party, gives me the impression that, if one switches on one of them, one hears the same tune every time. There is no difference; each time it is a repetition of the same cassette. The hon member for Kuruman has merely confirmed this again. [Interjections.]

Towards the end of his speech the hon member made one statement with which I wish to agree. He said that what the Government was going to do as regards the Black people would have a definitive effect on the future of the White in South Africa.




That is what he said, if I understood him correctly. I think that is quite right but it is important to remember that the reverse of the statement is true as well, namely that what the Government does not do as regards the future of the Black people will also have a definitive effect on the future of the Whites in South Africa. That is equally true. [Interjections.] The danger would, in fact, be: If the Government were to do nothing about the future of the Black people, what would the future hold for us? What would the future then hold for Whites? Mr Chairman, that is the problem of the Conservative Party. That is the problem with which its members are inescapably saddling themselves in following their directions of policy as regards the Black people.

Without pausing longer at the hon member for Kuruman, I should like to refer to a further interesting aspect of this debate. This is the fact that in this year’s discussion of the Vote in question we have an obvious shift from the subject of the discussion. It has shifted to the subject of the Black people; or even to the broader problem of how we are now going to act as regards the rest of South Africa’s unsolved constitutional problems. I believe it is very significant for one to be able to make this observation; that one can say with certainty that this shift has taken place. I am actually very grateful for this, Mr Chairman; I think we should all be grateful for it.

It is a fact that the debate on the constitutional problems of the country from the nature of the case has been devoted over the past three or four years to the new dispensation in respect of the Whites, the Coloureds and the Indians. Now we can say with gratitude that that dispensation has already been established; in addition it works. Differences will certainly still arise and will have to be solved. Further problems will definitely still crop up in that connection. I wish to make the statement, however, that the instrument now exists through which and by which possible differences between the three population groups mentioned can be handled as well. That is why we can leave it to the system, the machinery itself as it were, to solve further problems which may possibly arise along the road as regards the Whites, the Coloureds and the Indians. We can therefore devote the rest of the debate to the subject of how we should go about the remainder of the outstanding problems.

I should like to make a further statement which is that at this point we find ourselves in the process of reform in South Africa. Matters are under way; the process is in motion; it is already taking its course. That is the process of reform. To the objective observer—I would almost say the student of politics, the man who is totally removed from these scenes—it must present an altogether interesting case study—this process of reform with which we are concerned. To us who find ourselves in the midst of this process, from the nature of the case it is altogether a different experience. After all we are involved in the process; we naturally also have a subjective interest in what is taking place here. This turns it into an experience which one undergoes with tension.

The fact that the process is taking place also creates hope. I believe an important characteristic of this process which is taking place is the fact that those who are well-disposed as regards the process of reform probably cherish the intense desire that the process should succeed. I believe we also cherish the desire that more and more people should declare themselves prepared to participate in the process of reform; in fact, to participate actively. The greater the numbers who come forward to participate in the process or who declare themselves prepared to participate in the process of reform and the greater the number of people participating from all population groups, the greater the chances of a successful conclusion to the process. All leaders—political and other—ought to find answers for themselves to the question of what other way there is except the way which is being followed at the moment by the Government in its efforts to reform South Africa.

The objective is certainly clear, namely to effect the maximum possible peace through satisfaction among all South Africa’s inhabitants. The choice is equally clear. If we bring about reform in such a way that security disappears overboard, we will lose the readiness for change among the vast majority of the White population. If, on the other hand, we bring about no reform at all or carry it out too slowly, we play into the hands of the revolutionaries and their fellow travellers. In consequence, elements on either side of the road to reform inevitably play into one another’s hands—naturally each clearly prompted by his own objectives. They either dig in their heels obstinately and clutch those things which are familiar or, on the other hand, they attempt without conscience to overthrow the existing order and replace it with a dictatorship of the elite or something of that nature which can only be worse for those on behalf of whom the so-called freedom is already being advocated.

One therefore has to say that the road to reform is the obvious one.

To succeed in the process of reform, however, is by the same token an exceptionally difficult task—it is easier said than done. In the midst of the complexities of our society, of the situation in which we find ourselves—in addition to the built-in complexities—countless efforts are being made nowadays in particular to aggravate the situation, for example by means of internal unrest, by the creation of a revolutionary climate, by a planned onslaught on elements of the constitutional structure which have already been established and so on. I am referring specifically to institutions of local authority in Black areas and the planned onslaught which is obvious there against these institutions. To this we can add the intensified external pressure which is manifested in various ways.

I wish to pause here for a moment. A point I think even wellwishers overseas may lose sight of and more specifically the well-intentioned or possibly well-intentioned political participant in America is that the disinvestment process in which he may participate can elicit precisely the opposite reaction to what he has in mind. If one analyses the process of reform—unfortunately I do not have much time to pause here—and one considers the potential of external pressure as a factor, one finds that it can be overplayed to the extent that it will inevitably be to the advantage of the radical or the revolutionary. I think this is clear at first sight. It is a more deep-seated point, however, which I feel cannot be discounted even for example by the well-meaning American. I think it enormously important that the disadvantages of such participation in the process of disinvestment should be pointed out very clearly to the American because through it he can actually wreck his own high values—to put it like that.

To take it further. All this brings one to the realization that the reformer in South Africa requires great wisdom and grace to guide the process. He has to create and maintain confidence and simultaneously act forcefully when this is required. He has to excel in political skill and strategy so that he may conduct himself pro-actively. The moment he really responds to pressure he inevitably places his opponent in the winning position. From the nature of the case timing is of the utmost importance to ensure that the reformer stays in the vanguard controlling the situation and not merely reacting to pressure or whatever. The reformer has to be able to act from a position of strength. Only this Parliament can bring about the necessary changes in South Africa legally which is why it is necessary that this institution should be protected at all times as the instrument through which changes have to be accomplished. Nevertheless the reformer should be given every possible support, especially from outside Parliament as well, to strengthen his hand in so doing and leave his power base unimpaired.

Although the task of the reformer appears difficult, I must say that to me it also looks like an exciting challenge in which the reformer is concerned. If I were to stand aside and observe this, I should say to myself I would rather back the reformer because I think he is involved in an effort which can succeed in the difficult South Africa in which we live. At the same time he is engaged in a stimulating challenge which is why I should like to hitch my wagon to that star and move with it in South Africa.


Mr Chairman, on this occasion this afternoon I should like to express my particular appreciation towards the hon the Minister and his department for the way in which they are tackling the great task that is their responsibility. I want to wish them the best of luck ahead.

The announcement by the hon the Minister this afternoon about the phasing out of the second tier of government forms only part of the constitutional development in this country, of the process of reform. Despite the prophets of doom we have heard here this afternoon, I should like to say that as a result of my own involvement in both tiers of government a long-cherished ideal of mine is being realized because there is to be uniformity on the local government level in this country. I find that important. Unfortunately I cannot go into it in detail, but I shall say more about it at a later stage. I think it is a very important step that is being taken.

Opposition parties in this House as well as the voting public at large must take cognizance once and for all that this Government has committed itself to reform in South Africa in the interests of South Africa’s people, regardless of race or colour. We are continuing that process, and at present certain parties will have to make a sacrifice, for we are busy with an equalizing process. We must level an area on which we can erect a structure that will ensure that all South Africa’s inhabitants will be able to live in safety.

Against the background of the NP principles, the programme of principles as well as the manifesto of 1981 in which the Government indicated its Twelve Point Plan, it is very clear that we do not begrudge all the groups in South Africa what we as Whites claim in this country. That is why we shall continue, regardless of what the standpoint of certain other political parties in the Committee may be.

I should like to refer to the Council for the Co-ordination of Local Government Affairs. Here we have a council in which some of the most expert people are joined together on the first, second and third tiers of government. I should like to express my particular appreciation towards all those people who are prepared to apply their expertise in the interest of reform in South Africa. I should like to thank each member of that council personally this afternoon. If one thinks of what this council has achieved since its establishment on 1 January 1984, one has only the greatest appreciation for what these people have done. I am going to refer to a few of the investigations that have been made and the reports that have been submitted.

I am referring here for example to the Investigating Committee into Municipal Electoral Qualifications. In addition there is the investigation into the demarcating of the geographical jurisdiction areas of local authorities, the investigation into the determination of criteria for viable local authorities and the investigation into joint provision of services and the provision of regional services. I can continue in this way. Each one of those investigations, each one of those reports submitted, testifies to the thoroughness with which these people have performed their task.

When the co-ordinating council is being discussed here this afternoon, I should like to say that this council has a very important role to fulfil in this country, also on the road ahead. I also want to point out to the hon the Minister that the taxpayers in our towns and cities are under great pressure as a result of high tariffs and high taxes.

Despite the fact that we are in favour of each group having its own local authority, it is important that we co-operate with one another across the dividing lines of local authorities. This will result in certain empires in this country having to be broken down to ensure that our people can live in our cities and towns without being subjected to the immense financial pressure of local authorities. There can be co-operation in many spheres. I should like to plead for that seriously this afternoon.

The central Government has been created as the highest authority in a democratic way to execute certain policies, but the following is very important: With the greater devolution of authority to local government one will have to guard against local government’s undermining the policy of the central Government. I should like to appeal to the hon the Minister that we shall take note of that in particular on the road ahead.

I should like to say in the Committee this afternoon that the success of achieving the ideal according to which peace, security and prosperity will be ensured for South Africa and all its people, will be determined on the level of local government. Success will be determined in those areas where our people live together as neighbours. I should like to refer to Proverbs 27:10 which reads:

For better is a neighbour that is near than a brother far off.

The new translation puts it this way:

A neighbour nearby can help you more than a brother who is far away.

If we tackle the road ahead in South Africa with that attitude, all will go well.

I come back to the CP and in particular to the hon member for Kuruman, because I want to know from him whether he agrees with certain of the statements made by his sleeping partners. I think it is important for the Committee to take cognizance of that. The mouthpiece of the HNP says many things, inter alia the following:

Teen dié tyd is dit algemene kennis dat die sogenaamde derde regeringsvlak uiteindelik die grondslag is van die Botha/ Heunis-grondkonkoksie.

Is that not what the hon member for Water-berg said too? Did he not also speak of a concoction? These are the people to whom the State President made an appeal that we should take one another’s hands on the road ahead. Another of the CP’s sleeping partners is the gentleman Carel Boshoff. We must always remember that the other population groups also read these statements. Prof Boshoff says:

Die amptelike erkenning en bevestiging dat Swartes in groot getalle vaste inwoners van die RSA geword het en die voomeme om grondbesit aan hulle toe te ken, is die verste wat die regering nog gegaan het om die Afrikaner se land in die toekoms uit sy hande te laat gaan.

What an absurd thing to say! My future and the future of my children are being gambled with if people act in this way. One must also take note of the statements made by someone like Mr Eugène Terre’Blanche who invites the conservatives in the Cape who do not agree with the Bothas and the Coloureds and the Asians, to come to the Transvaal where he will give them a home.

I should like to conclude by reading what the Blacks say, the people about whom the hon member for Kuruman is so deeply worried. I want to read from a report with the heading “Local authorities explain”, as follows:

In the light of recent unrest and subsequent criticism of all those involved in local authority schemes, a large number of councillors from all over the East Rand came together to make public their dedication to their posts. The following document prepared by the Black Councillors’ Task Group, as they have named themselves as a result of that get-together, was issued by them: We, the undersigned, having been elected to serve the interests of the people, hereby solemnly declare that we shall individually and collectively, through all our councils and through councils’ organizations, do all in our power to work towards the achievement of the following objectives:

I want to quote only one of these, viz:

To be effective and visibly involved in negotiations with the central government aimed at achieving a just, equal opportunity society in the Republic of South Africa.

The NP is prepared to give these people what they are asking for in the interests of peace, prosperity and progress for all the inhabitants of the RSA.


Mr Chairman, I will not follow on the line of thought of the hon member for Witbank, because I want to deal specifically with the hon the Minister’s statement this afternoon in regard to the abolition of the provincial council system.

The hon the Minister’s statement in regard to the termination of this system and the manner in which he made it, is going to be viewed with very considerable alarm by the people of the province which I represent. It is true that those who voted last year in the referendum and gave a “yes” vote, including the members of the NRP who advocated a “yes” vote, should have known that they were voting, inter alia, for the abolition of the provincial system. That fact notwithstanding, it is absolutely true that, historically speaking, the province of Natal has been extremely jealous of its provincial autonomy. Certainly they may have lost the battle prior to Union in 1910 for a federal system of government but they were mollified at that stage to some extent by the knowledge that, in certain respects at any rate, their autonomy would be respected in view of the provincial system which was introduced in 1910.

Since then, greater fear has been expressed year after year at the erosion of provincial authority, and we have seen the powers of provincial councils truncated time after time. We have seen more power devolve on Pretoria, which certainly the people of Natal have resented since Union, instead of a devolution of power downwards towards the provincial system which might have catered to some extent for the recognition of the diversity which exists in South Africa. Now, this afternoon, the hon the Minister comes along and blandly announces the death knell of the entire provincial system. The hon the Minister simply says that in its place the political authority formerly exercized by the provincial councils will now vest in the three elements of Central Government, the Ministers’ Councils. In other words, the administration, the political power in regard to the provinces, will now vest entirely in the Central Government. The administration of the provinces, the hon the Minister tells us, will be undertaken by, I think his term is, “locally based political functionaries” who will be under the control of the Central Government. It will be within that framework.


Are you in favour of the retention of the existing provincial system?


No, the hon the Minister knows very well that I and my party are in favour of a devolution of power down to the provinces by way of a geographic federation in South Africa. We believe that the existing system has not been adequate, but we would like to see that strengthened rather than weakened. What the hon the Minister is doing now is taking more power to the Central Government away from the provincial authorities. The effect of this is going to be that the accountability for, in many ways, very sensitive areas relating to people at the provincial level will now be vested, not in their own elected political representatives, but in political bosses outside of Natal. That is going to be resented by the people of Natal.

When the hon the Minister talks about “locally based legal functionaries”, one has a sense of some sort of NP Gauleiter who will go about the province of Natal and impose the authority, the stamp of authority, of the Government upon the people. This is going to be bitterly resented in the province of Natal. There is a need in this country for matters of this kind to be brought closer to the people and not taken further away from the people. That is why we plead for greater provincial autonomy and, in fact, for a federal system of government in South Africa.

One thinks of the history and problems which have occurred in Natal in past years in regard to the sensitive area of education. Matters of this kind are of extreme interest to and are jealously guarded by the people of the province. Even the limited rights which the provincial councils have had in these matters have been worthy of defence on the part of the province of Natal.

Not only does the Government come this afternoon and, through the hon the Minister, announce a system which poses the danger of more centralization of power in the Central Government, but it still remains strangely silent about the incredible vacuum which exists in regard to links with Black people and Black organizations. This is a matter of particular interest—and the hon the Minister knows it—to the province of Natal. There is no indication what sort of links are contemplated by the Government in this regard. The hon the Minister knows that there is a strong feeling in Natal, across a wide spectrum of political opinion, for some links to be established between Natal and KwaZulu. We have asked for this and various interest groups have asked for this time and time again. I have pleaded in this House—I did so again last week with the hon the Minister’s colleague—that at least some consideration be given to Natal so that interested parties in Natal can formulate their own dispensation in regard to the affairs of the region which will allow for linkage between the Government of KwaZulu and the people of Natal. However, the Government remains strangely silent about it. The hon the Minister this afternoon made a vague reference to what the State President said earlier this year. Why is the Government silent? Is the Government prepared to give special consideration to the situation which exists in Natal where there is this very strong interdependence between White Natal and the so-called area of KwaZulu. This is a question which the hon the Minister must answer when he deals with the abolition of the provincial system because there is a tremendous vacuum in Natal in this regard.

The hon the Minister’s statement invites a variety of questions and there is need for clarification on any number of points as one goes through the statement. One does not have the time to read it in detail, but the hon the Minister is going to have to give a number of explanations in regard to the issues which he raised this afternoon relating to the abolition of the provincial council system. I want to know who these locally appointed political functionaries are going to be. I want to know what the hon the Minister means when he says:

Powers will be transferred to the respective Ministers’ Councils as soon as possible.

Does he mean as soon as possible after the dates he referred to in his first paragraph? Or does he mean that such powers may be transferred even between now and then?


Read the paragraph and you will see the answer there.


No, it is not clear. There is ambiguity as to what “as soon as possible” means. The same can be said of a number of the points the hon the Minister has related here. So I want to tell him that in the interests of clarification and in his own interests, he is going to have to give far more detail as to what his intentions are. Certainly, if one regards the statement in its entirety, it becomes apparent just what he has not said. I believe that it represents a fatal erosion of provincial autonomy and I think it is a giant move in the direction of almost absolute centralization in regard to the determination at least of political policy relating to the administration of provinces.

We on these benches—I am certain that the voters of Natal will resent it—reiterate our belief which I stated earlier in the devolution of power to the provinces by way of a federal system for South Africa.


Mr Chairman, the hon member for Berea will excuse me for not responding to the detailed arguments he put forward.

*Apart from the fact that constitutional development in South Africa was not simple, nor could it be completed instantly, the Director-General mentioned three other fundamental aspects of constitutional development in his annual report. Firstly, he says the Constitution confronts the parties involved with specific demands as regards being able to deal with tension and conflict in South Africa. Secondly, he says the participants have to accept that they are mutually dependent upon one another in so far as general affairs are concerned. Thirdly, he says that it is essential for all the parties involved to undergo a profound change in attitude. Now it is interesting on the one hand, and worrying on the other, to see how these three fundamental aspects are being approached by the other side of the House.

This afternoon the hon the Leader of the Official Opposition explained what the view of his party was on groups and group participation in the constitutional dispensation. What is still not clear to me about the approach of that party is how it can avoid a unitary system with a joint voters’ roil and its consequences. [Interjections.] Their approach is one of fairness and of political morality which is absolutized to the point of surrender to a form of majority rule in accordance with the world recipe. The needs and the necessity of group links are largely denied by this party.

It is a pity that the centrifugal forces of group disunity that are not handled correctly are totally underestimated by the Official Opposition.

The Official Opposition want to put forward an ideal democratic system to the country when the largest group in the country is unknown and is not controlled, governed, regulated or ordered in terms of democratic systems. The process supported by the Official Opposition does not offer a sufficient guarantee for the safety of minority groups. The party forgets that the freedoms which they speak about have to be the fruit of safety, and not the other way around.

In contrast to this we can look at the CP and their leader who behaved in his characteristic style this afternoon. It would appear that the CP wants to establish safety in South Africa by hiding behind their own doubts and then wanting to appear forceful.

The hon member for Waterberg said here this afternoon that if we wanted revolution in the country it could be caused by threatening or questioning the White say. The hon member said that if we wanted the maize protest to pale into insignificance we should continue with this process. The hon member for Waterberg, however, should bear in mind that any vision of the continued existence of the Whites has no meaning if that vision does not include a vision of the continued existence of the other groups in the country as well.

Every responsible citizen of this country should ask himself how we could regulate conflict and tension on in the long term. If I may draw a medical analogy I would say that an antibiotic is too late—we shall have to take preventive action. For the rest, and I say this, too, with reference to the contribution of the hon member for Waterberg here this afternoon, I want to point out that if we want to achieve success with the process of prevention there is one aspect on which we should not place our hopes, ie the use of force. Force of any kind—political force, financial force or military force—dowses the flames and makes a clean sweep. It enforces authority and renders the agitators powerless, but only temporarily. The reason for this is that the use of force cannot neutralize the leaven of revolution. This is a fact which the hon members of the CP continuously lose sight of.


Quitting will not help.


The hon member is now saying that to surrender will not help, but it is remarkable that there many defeatists who hide in the light behind their own misgivings.

While the hon members of the CP on the one hand prophesy about the future and predict how the Government is supposedly leading the Whites of this country to destruction, I think we should remind the hon member for Waterberg of the history of the late Mrs Lot. Mrs Lot turned around to look at the past, and if under present circumstances one persists in looking back, one will turn to stone. [Interjections.] A rock is a hard, firm and strong object, but it is also an inanimate object incapable of movement. As a result of the demands of our times this kind of approach and view of which the late Mrs Lot’s history reminds us, is not something upon which we can depend.

We have a responsibility, in a changing South Africa, to create a climate, specifically by way of style and way of thinking, in which new options become possible so that the next 10 years can determine whether the powerbase of the Whites in Southern Africa, the Republic of South Africa, bears the hallmark of permanency. We require a power-base whereby we can assent ourselves on the basis of our own quality and leadership and not by being supported by measures from previous eras when other circumstances applied. [Interjections.] Within a decade the NP has moved towards an openness, towards a new style of consultation and joint decision-making. We shall without doubt continue in this way, with a vision of a future in this country for people of colour—Blacks, Coloureds and Indians—if we are to have a vision of the future for ourselves.

We shall have to act so that negative nationalism can make room for self-confidence, which will enable us to rely on our own ability to lead and to convince, instead of on the use of force. In this regard the new style and approach of the hon the Minister is the only method whereby we shall succeed in effectively controlling conflict in the future.


Mr Chairman, the hon member for Caledon said here that the future prospect for the continued existence of Whites should also include other population groups. When we belonged to the NP, however, it did have a practical vision of the future embracing all the peoples of South Africa. However, there is a difference between that hon member’s vision of things and what we support. In his vision of things he only sees coloured groups, but our vision of things first of all makes provision for own freedom and own survival. That side of the House confuses people with vague constitutional terms and no one knows what they are aiming at. It is entirely a policy of capitulation.

The hon member for Witbank, for example, refers to this process of reform as “being involved in an equalizing process”. He then goes on to describe it. Can one imagine that a former conservative thinker could speak in this way? It almost sounded as if he were monotonously reading out the funeral notice of the Whites in South Africa. [Interjections.] It is apparent from the report tabled by the hon the Minister, which we received on Thursday, that we are dealing here with probably the most important department in the new constitutional dispensation with a giant appropriation of R5 336,5 million. The hon the Minister is in the driving seat at every level of government, but particularly at the local government level as chairman of the Council for the Co-ordination of Local Government Affairs. With the Government’s avowed policy of the devolution of power, to “bring the Government to the people”, one would say that self-determination on own affairs according to the individual choice of the various communities would specifically have to come into its own right here where it concerns own residential areas and an own community life, here where our people are affected on the personal level more than on any other level of government. It is the local authority that regulates the order and the conditions in individual community settlements and living areas where our people can experience and give expression to their own cultures, religion, traditions and way of life. As a consequence the CP will continue to campaign for the policy of separate development, at local government level as well. We think that it is the only peaceful solution for the various peoples of South Africa.

I read in yesterday’s Sunday Times that the NP has now officially announced that it has abandoned the policy of separate development. The heading stated: “The Great Nat Turnabout”, and the reporter wrote:

The NP has made an astonishing official about-turn on apartheid … Thousands of copies have been printed and will be distributed to party workers. They will use it to confront an increasingly insecure White electorate which is demanding that the Government spells out a blueprint for the future.

This means declining support for the NP. What an admission that separate development is being renounced! The hon member for Ermelo was saying only last week that separate development was still the policy of the NP. [Interjections.] And that after a mixed coalition Cabinet has been governing this country since 3 September 1984, after a blueprint for political integration at central as well as local government level was announced by the State President himself, and after the Government decided in principle to repeal the Mixed Marriages Act and section 16 of the Immorality Act, which in turn will have implications for all other related legislation governing the separate development structure in South Africa. As a consequence I want to ask the hon the Minister categorically if the Government envisages any amendment to the Group Areas Act with a view to accommodating the problems that are going to stem from this. This law is, after all, now being administered in its entirety by the hon the Minister. The Prohibition of Political Interference Act will also be affected by this. I therefore want to ask the hon the Minister this relevant question, as group areas now fall under his control: Can mixed couples also be accommodated by means of permits, in the residential areas of White local authorities? This is a matter on which the hon the Minister will have to reply. We also want to know how much of a say a local authority is going to have in regard to decisions about whether or not those people live in a certain area. I also want to ask the hon the Minister what is going to happen in connection with the right of ownership of such people. What about the right of ownership? As the wife of a White man, a woman of colour would surely become the joint owner of the property. I want to know whether she could inherit that proprietary right when the husband dies. These are matters on which we have to get finality.

I now want to come to the new plan of the NP for urban Blacks. I confronted the hon the Minister on 9 July 1984 on the following statement he made (Hansard: House of Assembly, col 10942):

We did not, after all, gain approval for provision to be made for Black people within the same institution.

The hon the Minister subsequently said: Yes, but that only relates to central government level—not local government level or the co-ordinating councils, in which Black people are now being included up to the level of regional services councils. I want to show hon members how the hon the Minister responded on two occasions. I am referring to the debate on the Promotion of Local Government Affairs Amendment Bill that took place on 20 March this year (Hansard: House of Assembly, col 2549):

Surely we were then discussing the parliamentary institution.

The hon the Minister speaks of a “parliamentary institution”. A little further on in the same debate the hon the Minister said (Hansard: House of Assembly, col 2572):

The debate that took place on 9 July last year was about the central system of Government.

Here the hon the Minister referred to the “central system of Government” of Parliament. That is what the hon the Minister said, adding that in this regard he did not have a mandate. I now want to put a question to the hon the Minister. It is, after all, his policy that there can be no more than one system of government in any one country. Surely that is a standpoint …


I never said that. [Interjections.]


That is, after all, what he said in 1982. [Interjections.] On that basis the hon the Minister told us in 1982 that there would be power-sharing and one government institution in one country. [Interjections.] The hon the Minister went on to state categorically …




He categorically stated that he did not have the mandate to accommodate Black people in that Government institution as well, not so? After all, it is here in Hansard in black and white! [Interjections.] In the light of this I want to ask the hon the Minister if he therefore intends first returning to the White electorate for a mandate before allowing this informal non-statutory negotiation forum—this kind of national convention, multi-party conference, umbrella body, or whatever he may wish to call it—to be given statutory status as a Government forum or institution in South Africa. I think the hon the Minister owes the country this undertaking. He is morally obliged to do so, and we ask him to reply to this issue in this debate.

I now want to return to own Government, with the emphasis on own local government level. By the way, I want to ask the hon the Minister if it is still the policy of the Government that there will be own, separate local authorities for the respective population groups, because I have not yet heard from the other two coalition partners that they are prepared to accept this. We ask the hon the Minister if it is still the policy.

The Government has announced that there are going to be 44 free trade areas as far as local authority matters are concerned. Now I want to ask the hon the Minister: What are the decision-making powers of the local authorities in regard to these areas going to be? [Time expired.]


Mr Chairman, the hon member for Pietersburg deals with the two concepts “apartheid” and “separate development” just like that, in the same breath. He thought that because an English-speaking journalist had said the NP is moving away from apartheid, that the NP has written off separate development. The concept of apartheid overseas and among English-speaking journalists is poles apart from what he and I understand, and have understood in the past, by “separate development”. [Interjections.] Separate development is most certainly still a part of the NP’s picture. [Interjections.] I unfortunately cannot take the responsibility for a journalist attaching specific interpretations to it.

What is written in this booklet of ours are what the NP and its Ministers have been saying over the past months, nothing more and nothing less.


Mr Chairman, may I ask the hon member if it is now clear that apartheid is no longer part of the NP policy? [Interjections.]


I should like to reply to that question in the same way as the State President replied to it.


No, reply to it as you want to.


My reply is the same, and it is that I do not want to say anything about that caricature of policy known as apartheid. [Interjections.]




I should now like to return to a second point raised by the hon member for Pietersburg when he said that while the CP members were still part of the NP, the NP had a vision for all the population groups in the country, particularly for the Black people. He said we knew where we were going then. The difference between us and the CP is that we discovered that the closer we came to realizing those visions the more we began to see that pipe-dreams also played a part in our vision. We saw that the vision we had originally created simply was not feasible.

If we pursue a vision which is unattainable we are doing what a man does when he runs away from a lion and aims for a tree that is 26 miles off. The tree is there and if he could get to it he would be saved, but the lion is going to catch him long before he reaches that tree. That vision is not attainable. [Interjections.] For that reason the NP is working on a second possibility. Apartheid or separate development are not the only two possibilities as an alternative to integration. There is a third possibility and that is what the NP has in mind.


Do you have a mandate for it?


I should like to get to the point that the hon member for Jeppe is making now, viz whether we have a mandate for it. [Interjections.] I want to refer to a second blue booklet that played a role here, viz “The Constitution in a Nutshell”. The hon members know what role this booklet played in the sense that it was distributed very widely during the referendum when the Government asked the voters for a mandate. We made it known—the hon members can go and read it on page 11—that as soon as the Constitution was implemented for the Coloureds, Indians and Whites, the next problem on the order paper would be that of the Black people. [Interjections.]


Did you spell it out?


Of course we spelt it out; it is written here in this booklet and the hon members can have a look at it. [Interjections.] We said that it would come up for discussion. I should like to leave the hon members of the CP at that point and address myself to the hon Leader of the Official Opposition.

I should like to begin at the same point, with the assertion in that booklet that it was our intention to begin coming to grips with tackling the problem of the Blacks as soon as the constitutional proposals had been finalized. That statement was also made by the Prime Minister, as he was then, in his guidelines and in various speeches. This point was also made repeatedly on various occasions by the hon the Minister of Constitutional Development and Planning. It was a matter of dispute between the NP and the PFP before the referendum. And yet at that stage the PFP did not take our word for it because the PFP took it extremely amiss of us that Black people were being excluded from the constitutional development which we were then engaged in.

The issue of the radicalization and estrangement that occurred between White and Black as a result of the new Constitution which excluded the Blacks, I want to ascribe partially, or even to a large extent, to the PFP. [Interjections.] I ask the hon Leader of the Official Opposition to hear me out because I am making this point not just to reproach him, but for the purpose of being able to make a second point. Throughout the entire referendum campaign the PFP placed a great deal of emphasis on the fact that Black people were excluded from the constitutional dispensation. Black people obviously had to believe it eventually. If the PFP had projected a different image at that stage the perception amongst Black people would probably have been different later on and they would not have felt so excluded.

The reason I am making this point is that we are once again at a stage at which the process of negotiation with Black people is entering a very important phase. The hon Leader of the Official Opposition has agreed to take part in that process of negotiation. With that in mind I want to ask him not to make similar mistakes at this stage to those the PFP made on that specific point during the referendum campaign; in other words, for the sake of party-political considerations to advance arguments and conjure up spectres that will eventually stand between us and that goal that we are together striving to achieve, namely a peaceful dispensation for all the people of this country. Let us, in spite of our mutual differences, work together and see to it that insignificant party-political reasons do not prevent this goal from being reached.

In this regard I am referring specifically to statements made today by the hon Leader of the Opposition’s to the effect that as long as the Government insists on a group basis for the politics of the future and as long as that is our point of departure, we cannot expect to be successful. I hope that I heard incorrectly and that I must not conclude that the hon Leader of the Official Opposition is paving the way for a withdrawal from this process. I hope that this is not the case because I should like to bring home to him that this matter is important and I am not trying to score a petty political point off him.

In conclusion I should like to return to the hon member for Waterberg who contemptuously quoted the following from this latest booklet of the NP, on page 16:

… in which every nation and population group—including the Whites—

According to him they were merely put in as an afterthought. If he looks at the sentence construction there, however, he will see that those words were inserted for emphasis, not by way of understatement. At the bottom of page 4 there is exactly the same sentence construction but this time “Black people” is placed between the dashes. Again this is done for emphasis, not by way of understatement. [Time expired.]


Mr Chairman, I should like to congratulate the previous speaker, the hon member for Helderkruin, on the compilation of a fine publication.


Hear, hear!


If I could give the Opposition some sound advice, I would recommend them to make a thorough study of this booklet.


We have already done that.


In any case, I congratulate the hon member for Helderkruin on it and I think the hon member for Jeppe would also benefit from reading it. [Interjections.]


I have already read it! [Interjections.]


This afternoon I should like to pay tribute to people who on a voluntary, organized basis contributed to establishing better relations between Whites and people of colour in their particular communities. It is a fact that we as a younger generation due to a policy in our life time according to which an ordering of the community took place, did not always have an opportunity to acquire a thorough knowledge of the non-White groups in our community. I always felt an intense need to get to become more closely acquainted with the Coloured sector of our society in particular, and to accommodate them in our political system. That is why I found it encouraging as well as a good thing when as far, back as 1962, our present State President, as the Minister responsible for Coloured Affairs at that stage, instituted local Labour Committees. This was only a year after South Africa became a Republic. They enabled our Coloured South Africans to improve their working conditions. In the course of this process the present State President also gave concrete shape to the Eiselen school of thought.

A further positive step followed on 21 October 1974, when my namesake, as the responsible Deputy Minister in this House, launched the system of relations committees. Here I should like to quote what he said on that occasion. (Hansard: 21 October 1974, col 5937):

I want to tell hon members that favourable attitudes and local human relations are not things one can provide for by means of legislation. They rest on the development of an inner attitude and form part of a process of education and evolution … To stimulate this process of education and evolution and place it on a more ordered basis, the intention is to establish committees at certain places in South Africa on which both Whites and Coloureds will serve and which will make it their aim to operate in spheres where friction between the two population groups may develop.

I want to make it clear here this afternoon that I appreciate the role relations committees have played in our society, particularly for the following two reasons: Firstly, because no members received any remuneration for their services; and secondly, because the establishment of such committees took place on a voluntary basis. These committees afforded people an opportunity to investigate and to discuss problems on the local level and to seek solutions jointly. I think that a large percentage of local problems can be solved by holding discussions around a conference table. What are the facts in the final analysis? The facts are that local problems in many cases are seized upon as a symbol of South Africa’s pattern of living, as our general life-style—and I do not think this is in fact true! Good attitudes are not something that one can enforce by means of legislation. It has to come from the hearts of people. It depends on an inner attitude; and an inner attitude to skin colour and understanding for one another’s problems can only develop if the one person understands the other and has understanding for the way another person is made.

People can only live together in peace and harmony if they are willing to do this. If they are not willing, no relationship can succeed. This is true of the relationship in marriage, between employer and employee, and also between the various peoples. In addition the willingness to have sound human relations will eventually be crucial in the success or failure of our new constitutional dispensation. Unfortunately there are still too many people in this country who are too afraid to display a willingness to further sound relations.




I am not afraid of integration because I think we can hold our own. [Interjections.]

The establishment of relations committees ten years ago brought about a complete change in South Africa, giving prominence to mutual understanding. In the process of creating better attitudes the polarization that was developing between Whites and non-Whites was halted just in time. In my opinion the relations committees were the precursors, or they contributed, to our reaping the benefits of the new constitutional dispensation today. In the new dispensation we also have to depend on one another’s good faith and we have to display our worth to one another. During this process we shall constantly have to seek the greatest measure of co-operation, by way of consensus. More effective communication will have to be the watchword to eliminate misunderstanding and tension. The close on 200 relations committees with their more than 3 700 members, who held 600 meetings during 1984, have assisted in making the mutual understanding of the standpoints of various population groups possible. Effective communication includes listening to one another’s standpoints. However, it requires magnanimity, responsibility and self-discipline. We shall have to refrain from making ill-considered remarks and statements. We shall have to set the proverbial “watch before our mouths.” The new dispensation requires a change of heart.

The new dispensation will not only depend on the disposition of political leaders. The success of the new dispensation will depend on the inherent disposition of each citizen of this country. That is why the extension of the system of relations committees is of cardinal importance to me. While I am emphasizing this point, I want to appeal to the hon the Minister of Constitutional Development and Planning to investigate the possibility of incorporating Black people into his portfolio in instances where they will be accommodated according to the system that was announced. The hon the Minister’s department already has the manpower, the structure and the knowledge to extend this system further for the purpose of accommodating Black people as well as the system of relations committees.

The responsibility for the outcome of the new dispensation now rests on the shoulders of each one of us. If it should fail, everyone will share in that failure. I have no doubt that everyone is going to share in the success of the new dispensation, but then our population structure should be our opportunity and not our downfall. When the suspicion has been removed and we have attained unity in diversity we shall be on our way to a future full of hope and promise for Whites and non-Whites, or for Blacks and Coloureds and for non-Coloureds and non-Blacks in this beautiful country.


Mr Chairman, let me begin by telling the hon member for George here and now that I appreciate his reference to the relations committees. I want to confirm that these relations committees really made an important contribution towards establishing and improving relations among groups.

Secondly, I want to tell him that I agree with him that it is very difficult to structure the relations activity among the different population groups in such a way that it represents parallel organizations. My colleague, the hon the Minister of Co-operation and Development, and I are holding discussions on the question of how best it could be structured.

I just want to make a few remarks that I think are important. The hon member for Waterberg said we should combat revolution with all the means at our disposal. No-one would dispute such a statement but it does not represent the whole truth. I do not think the utilization of security forces and authority alone constitute an alternative to the political processes of the country that have to continue. At most we should employ security forces and the authority of the State to stabilize and regulate our society so that the other processes can continue peacefully. We need have no doubt that authority cannot remove the cause of dissatisfaction. Only programmes of reform can remove the cause of dissatisfaction in communities.

We can indulge in wishful thinking, but fundamentally all the parties are struggling with one problem viz, how Black communities should take part in the political processes of South Africa. As a consequence it is important that the debate in its entirety has today centered around one question in particular, the accommodation of Black communities within the political dispensation. It is true that when we fought the referendum campaign for the acceptance or otherwise of the Constitution, we did not ignore the question of Black participation. In fact, the hon member for Helderkruin is correct. We specifically referred to it in the publication “Constitution 83 in a nutshell”. I should like to quote two paragraphs from it to substantiate this:

National states alone do not provide the complete solution for those Blacks who live outside their borders. Constant attention is being given to this problem: … It should be clear, however, that whatever method is decided upon to resolve this issue, the Blacks themselves will have to be consulted in the process.

In other words, we have not said that the problem does not exist. On the basis of the order of priority of the importance of the problem we went further than that and said:

The problem of political rights for Blacks and their economic and social position is so much greater and more complex than that of the Coloureds and Indians. For this reason it is important to implement the new dispensation for Coloureds and Indians as soon as possible so that all our attention and energies may be devoted to the greater problems.

What have we therefore done? [Interjections.] On the basis of the determination of priorities and preferences we said: Let us dispose of the few so that the country may turn its attention to the many, the majority.

Business interrupted in accordance with Standing Order No 19.

House Resumed:

Progress reported and leave granted to sit again.

The House adjourned at 18h00.