House of Assembly: Vol1 - WEDNESDAY 14 JUNE 1961
Bill read a first time.
First Order read; Third reading,—Indemnity Bill.
That the Bill be now read a third time.
The official Opposition will oppose the third reading of this Bill on the grounds which formed the subject of debate in the earlier stages. I should like to set out, briefly, the grounds of our objections and why we feel that the Government is wrong in passing this measure in the form in which it is before this House.
The hon. the Minister of Justice made great play at the earlier stages of the fact that this Bill is practically word for word identical with indemnity measures which have been passed in years gone by. But what he did not make clear to this House is the circumstances in which those Indemnity Bills were passed. The circumstances they were designed to cover are quite different from what is covered by the Bill which is at present before this House. This Bill is being put on the Statute Book to deal with actions which have been taken—as the Bill puts it—between 21 March 1960 and before the commencement of this Act, with intent to suppress internal disorder in any part of the Union. It indemnifies the State and officers of the State from any liability in respect of anything done in the course of those proceedings.
There is a large measure of protection, in any case, for persons who are acting in terms of legal orders given to them to preserve the security of the State. What this Bill is intended to do is to go a great deal further than that and, irrespective of what the circumstances may be, to indemnify the State and all the officers of the State. It has been made clear that we have not the slightest objection to the indemnification of individuals who have acted in terms of orders given in good faith. There is no objection to that, and we believe it is right that persons who are acting under orders and persons who are responsible for the maintenance of order, should be indemnified in those circumstances. What we do say is wrong is that the State should take away all right of recourse to the courts in the circumstances which this present Bill covers. The Government has conceded that there appear to be cases where it is right that there should be indemnification, and we say it is utterly wrong that, in effect, the Minister has set up as the judge in those matters the State Attorney —for whom we have the greatest respect—together with others. We say it is a matter for the courts or, in the circumstances which apply here, there is much to be said for a judicial commission. That, too, the Government has refused to concede.
This Bill goes very much further than what is known. This Bill covers anything which may happen up to the time when this Act becomes law. It is quite an easy matter to hold up the promulgation of this Act for some time and to cover matters which have not yet happened. We say it is utterly wrong that in advance indemnification should be given. If, unhappily, there are other cases which are covered by this Bill, cases which will yet take place—and I hope there will not be any—we say that that should be the subject of quite separate legislation. It is quite wrong, as the Minister himself has admitted, to include a provision which is designed to deal with events which might happen in the future. The very term of indemnification implies the indemnification in respect of acts which have already happened. Parliament has always given power of indemnification in respect of matters where the circumstances are known. But in this case the indemnification is tremendously wide and the hon. the Minister will agree that there may be many cases of which the public has no knowledge in respect of which in this Bill, Parliament, without knowledge of what it is covering, is granting indemnification. We say the principle is wrong and that that indemnity should have been limited to the individuals concerned and not to the State, leaving persons to test their legal rights against the State if they wish to do so. I have no doubt that in a very big proportion of the cases it is likely, in the circumstances shown in the reports of the commissions, that the persons concerned could not succeed against the State. We say that the State is here taking too wide an indemnity. It is utterly wrong for the State to do so and we believe they are doing a disservice to this country by taking an indemnity with the wide ambit such as is being discussed by us at the present time.
Mr. Speaker, I know that there are precedents for this but I wish to make a final protest in regard to the shifting of the onus which takes place. The hon. the Minister has indicated that it is clear that a person who alleges that an act is mala fide is still entitled to take that particular case to court. One can imagine the tremendous onus which rests upon that individual in view of the provisions of Clause 1 (3) of the Bill, which provides that all acts will have been deemed to have been done in good faith and with the intent which is mentioned in the clause. It is going a very long way, first of all, to provide that a person can only succeed, whether it be against the State or the individual, if he can prove mala fides, and then to provide that good faith will be presumed unless the contrary is proved. It is our submission that that is not an onus which in the circumstances with which we are dealing should be cast upon the individual. at least in some of the happenings which will be covered by this Bill.
Lastly, I should like to stress again the objection of this side of the House, and I should like to put it in the strongest possible terms. We have the strongest objection to indemnifying acts which may not yet have happened. It is making a farce of Parliament to ask it to grant an indemnity in respect of something which might happen in the future. I say that the Government is wrong in not having put an end date to the acts which are indemnified by this Bill. They could well have provided for indemnification in respect of matters which happened at a later stage by means of separate legislation. We protest that the Government is not prepared to limit this Bill in the way that was suggested by the Opposition. I repeat we wish to see the indemnity limited to the officers of the State only, leaving the State liable. We wish also to see a reasonable end date put to the period during which acts are indemnified. That has been refused and we will therefore vote against the third reading.
We, too, shall vote against the third reading of this Bill. The arguments that we put forward in the second reading debate have in no way been satisfactorily answered by the hon. the Minister, and no amendments have been accepted at the Committee Stage of this Bill which make the measure less repugnant to us. Indeed, some of the arguments which were put up by hon. members on the other side of the House, if anything strengthen our opposition to this measure which, despite all the precedents that the hon. the Minister has mentioned, goes very much further and gives much wider powers than any previous Indemnity Act passed by this House. We feel that South Africa is entering troubled waters and the utmost caution should be exercised by the State and its servants in the use of any strong-arm measures, which can only lead to further bitterness and racial animosity. We feel that no Bill which can be interpreted in any way as giving blanket indemnity to the State or to its servants should be put on the Statute Book at this time. We shall vote again the third reading.
Just one or two observations about the very objective and reasonable way in which the two hon. members who spoke stated their case. There was a comprehensive discussion during the second reading and also in the Committee Stage, and I can only repeat what I have already said, that I regarded it as having been an objective discussion on both sides of the House.
The hon. member who has just sat down said she did not like strong-arm measures. Well, I think certainly 90 per cent of the voters in South Africa, Afrikaans- and English-speaking, are grateful to the Government, according to what they intimate to us, for the way in which the Government acted to preserve peace and order, particularly during the few days before and after we became a Republic. Therefore I do not think that the hon. member is speaking on behalf of a large number of voters when she resents the speedy action taken by the Government to cope with the situation.
The hon. member for Springs (Mr. Tucker) again put his case very reasonably. His last argument was that the date should be determined in the Bill itself, because, he says, we may perhaps postpone the date of the coming into operation of the Act. He says that incidents may take place in regard to which Parliament cannot judge. But this Bill can only be passed whilst Parliament is still sitting, and if Parliament is sitting it can take note of what takes place. Therefore I think the hon. member is attaching an incorrect meaning to this date. His standpoint is that the date should be inserted in the Bill. My standpoint is that the Bill must come into operation through the machinery created by Parliament during this Session. The normal procedure will be followed. When the Bill has been passed by both House of Parliament it will, I take it, be signed by the President and thereafter be published in the Government Gazette in the ordinary way.
I cannot quite understand the hon. member’s first point. He draws a distinction between the circumstances in 1914, in 1922 and the other times, and those of to-day. He says that the circumstances now amount to internal disorder. But what else was it in 1914? The 1914 Indemnity Act dealt with two points. The first was the Strike of 1913. That was disorder. In addition, towards the end, there was also included an Act which the Government of the time committed by deporting people without any legal authority for it. But the real point in the 1914 Act was that it dealt with the strike. That was also internal disorder. In 1920 the Indemnity Act also for the most part dealt with internal disorder. Therefore I cannot appreciate the distinction drawn by the hon. member. Here we are dealing to-day with disorder which may take place, and deeds of the Government for which the Government asks to be indemnified.
I want to conclude by repeating, with your leave, Mr. Speaker, that it is accepted in our common law, in the Roman-Dutch law and in our customs in South Africa, that the Government can ask to be indemnified for acts committed bona fide; not for acts committed mala fide, because the courts are always open for persons to lodge complaints. That has been the practice in South Africa, and I hope it will remain the practice, that no Government in South Africa will ever go further when it asks to be indemnified—that it will never go further than bona fide acts, and that it will always leave it to the courts, as the practice was in the past. That is also the practice being followed in this Bill, and I hope that it will be followed in future also, that we will always give the citizen of the country the opportunity to go to court when he can prove mala fides.
Motion put and the House divided:
Ayes—87: Badenhorst, F. H.; Bekker, G. F. H.; Bootha, L. J. C.; Botha, M. C.; Botha, P. W.; Botha, S. P.; Coertze, L. I.; Coetzee, P. J.; de Villiers, C. V.; de Villiers, J. D.; de Wet, C.; Diederichs, N.; du Pisanie, J.; du Plessis, H. R. H.; du Plessis, P. W.; Erasmus, F. C.; Fouché, J. J. (Sr.); Froneman, G. F. van L.; Greyling, J. C.; Grobler, M. S. F.; Haak, J. F. W.; Hertzog, A.; Heystek, J.; Hiemstra, E. C. A.; Jonker, A. H.; Jurgens, J. C.; Keyter, H. C. A.; Knobel, G. J.; Kotze, G. P.; Kotzé, S. F.; Labuschagne, J. S.; le Riche, R.; le Roux, P. M. K.; Louw, E. H.; Luttig, H. G.; Malan, A. I.; Malan, W. C.; Marais, J. A.; Maree, W. A.; Mentz, F. E.; Meyer, T.; Mostert, D. J. J.; Muller, S. L.; Nel, M. D. C. de W.; Otto, J. C.; Pelser, P. C.; Potgieter, D. J.; Potgieter, J. E.; Rall. J. J.; Sadie, N. C. van R.; Sauer, P. O.; Schoeman, B. J.; Schoeman, J. C. B.; Schoonbee, J. F.; Serfontein, J. J.; Stander, A. H.; Steyn, F. S.; Steyn, J. H.; Strydom, G. H. F.; Treurnicht, N. F.; Uys, D. C. H.; van den Berg, G. P.; van den Berg, M. J.; van den Heever, D. J. G.; van der Ahee, H. H.; van der Merwe, J. A.; van der Merwe, P. S.; van der Walt, B. J.; van der Wath, J. G. H.; van Eeden, F. J.; van Niekerk, G. L. H.; van Niekerk, M. C.; van Rensburg, M. C. G. J.; van Staden, J. W.; van Wyk, G. H.; van Wyk, H. J.; Venter, M. J. de la R.; Venter, W. L. D. M.; Verwoerd, H. F.; Visse, J. H.; von Moltke, J. von S.; Vorster, B. J.; Vosloo, A. H.; Webster, A.; Wentzel, J. J.
Tellers: W. H. Faurie and J. J. Fouché.
Noes—47: Barnett, C.; Basson, J. A. L.; Bowker, T. B.; Bronkhorst, H. J.; Butcher, R. R.; Cope, J. P.; Cronje, F. J. C.; de Beer, Z. J.; de Kock, H. C.; Dodds, P. R.; Durrant, R. B.; Eaton, N. G.; Fisher, E. L.; Frielinghaus, H. O.; Gay, L. C.; Graaff de V.; Henwood, B. H.; Higgerty, J. W.; Holland, M. W.; Horak, J. L.; Lawrence, H. G.; le Roux, G. S. P.; Lewis, H.; Lewis, J.; Malan, E. G.; Miller, H.; Oldfield, G. N.; Plewman, R. P.; Radford, A.; Raw, W. V.; Ross, D. G.; Russell, J. H.; Shearer, O. L.; Smit, D. L.; Steenkamp, L. S.; Steyn, S. J. M.; Steytler, J. van A.; Streicher, D. M.; Suzman, H.; Swart, H. G.; Tucker, H.; van Niekerk, S. M.; van Ryneveld, C. B.; Waterson, S. F.; Williams, T. O.
Tellers: A. Hopewell and T. G. Hughes.
Motion accordingly agreed to.
Bill read a third time.
Second Order read: Third reading,—Post Mortem Examinations and Removal of Human Tissues Amendment Bill.
Bill read a third time.
Third Order read: Third reading,—Bantu Education Amendment Bill.
That the Bill be now read for the third time.
We do not intend detaining the House long in regard to this matter. In regard to Clause 1, I once again want to thank the Minister, because I think that, at my suggestion, he has not only improved the Bill, but he also set an example of how other Bills in future should be in regard to this matter where we are dealing with the delegation of powers to officials of the State; and that he has accepted here in principle that where this procedure has to be followed power will be delegated only to senior officials of the Department. That ought to have a good effect, and not only on this Bill but on future legislation.
Mr. Speaker, our objections still exist in connection with the two principles I have mentioned. But just in passing I want to repeat that in regard to Clause 2, where provision will now be made for assistance in connection with hostels, quarters for teachers or school clinics, or some appendage to such a school, that is also an improvement, and that the assistance the Government will in future give to these community schools, or which the Department will give, is an improvement and will assist these schools.
But I want to repeat that the objection in principle of this side of the House still exists, particularly in regard to the objections I mentioned, viz. the delegation of powers and the other one I will mention in a moment. Now, Mr. Speaker, as I said, we are aware that the Government provides for the delegation of powers also in other legislation. But here we say again that the principle, as it is applied here, even after the amendment made in the Committee Stage, is still valid and that we are afraid that this principle will be extended and that it will not be to the benefit of the smooth working of Parliament or of our legislation.
Then there is the question of the retrospective effect. That still stands apart from the clause. We objected to it and suggested that it should form part of the clause itself. I referred to a section in the Land Bank Act. May 1 once again refer the hon. the Minister—and not only this Minister, because I think we can all follow it—to the Railways and Harbours Acts Amendment Bill where this principle also applies, and where a sounder principle is applied than is the case in this Bill.
Order! The hon. member is now deviating too far from the third reading. He must confine himself to the content of the Bill.
Mr. Speaker, with all respect, the import of the Bill is contained in a specific and separate clause which provides that there will be retrospective effect in regard to the previous clause. That is Clause 3 (2).
No, but the hon. member referred to other Bills, and he should have done so on another occasion.
Sir, with all respect, may I not point out that the effect of this clause will be unsound in respect of legislation in general and this Bill in particular?
No, the hon. member must take another opportunity to do that.
If I am limited to the two matters which I mentioned and cannot refer the Minister to other and better legislation in regard to this matter, I just want to repeat that this side of the House will vote against the third reading of this Bill, particularly on the basis of the two principles which I have already submitted to the Minister.
Our objection to the original Act is well known. The amending Act does not from our point of view make the original Act any more acceptable. Within the framework of Government policy the effect of this Act will be to bring about certain improvements. With regard to the improvements, we feel that decentralization is a good thing. Our particular objection to this Act is that it will tend to implement the Government policy of bringing coercion to bear upon parents of children in the urban areas and compelling them to send their children to get their education in the rural areas, and we take strong exception to that.
In conclusion, we just want to register our objection not only to this Bill but also to underline our objections to the principal Act, and we shall therefore vote against the third reading.
Motion put and the House divided:
Ayes—84: Badenhorst, F. H.; Bekker, G. F. H.; Bootha, L. J. C.; Botha, M. C.; Botha, P. W.; Botha, S. P.; Coertze, L. I.; Coetzee, P. J.; de Villiers, C. V.; de Villiers, J. D.; de Wet, C.; Diederichs, N.; du Pisanie, J.; du Plessis, P. W.; Erasmus, F. C.; Fouché, J. J. (Sr.); Froneman, G. F. van L.; Greyling, J. C.; Grobler, M. S. F.; Haak, J. F. W.; Hertzog, A.; Heystek, J.; Hiemstra, E. C. A.; Jonker, A. H.; Jurgens, J. C.; Keyter, H. C. A.; Knobel, G. J.; Kotze, G. P.; Kotzé, S. F.; Labuschagne, J. S.; le Riche, R.; le Roux, P. M. K.; Louw, E. H.; Luttig, H. G.; Malan, A. I.; Malan, W. C.; Marais, J. A.; Maree, W. A.; Mentz, F. E.; Meyer, T.; Mostert, D. J. J.; Muller, S. L.; Nel, M. D. C. de W.; Otto, J. C.; Pelser, P. C.; Potgieter, D. J.; Potgieter, J. E.; Rall, J. J.; Sadie, N. C. van R.; Sauer, P. O.; Schoeman, B. J.; Schoeman, J. C. B.; Schoonbee, J. F.; Serfontein, J. J.; Smit, H. H.; Stander, A. H.; Steyn, F. S.; Steyn, J. H.; Strydom, G. H. F.; Treurnicht, N. F.; Uys, D. C. H.; van den Berg, M. J.; van den Heever, D. J. G.; van der Ahee, H. H.; van der Merwe, J. A.; van der Merwe, P. S.; van der Walt, B. J.; van der Wath, J. G. H.; van Eeden, F. J.; van Niekerk, G. L. H.; van Niekerk, M. C.; van Rensburg, M. C. G. J.; van Staden, J. W.; van Wyk, G. H.; van Wyk, H. J.; Venter, M. J. de la R.; Venter, W. L. D. M.; Verwoerd, H. F.; Visse, J. H.; von Moltke, J. von S.; Vosloo, A. H.; Webster, A.
Tellers: W. H. Faurie and J. J. Fouché.
Noes—46: Barnett, C.; Basson, J. A. L.; Bowker, T. B.; Bronkhorst, H. J.; Butcher, R. R.; Cope, J. P.; Cronje, F. J. C.; de Beer, Z. J.; de Kock, H. C.; Dodds, P. R.; Durrant, R. B.; Eaton, N. G.; Fisher, E. L.; Frielinghaus, H. O.; Gay, L. C.; Graaff, de V.; Henwood, B. H.; Higgerty, J. W.; Holland, M. W.; Horak, J. L.; Lawrence, H. G.; le Roux, G. S. P.; Lewis, H.; Lewis, J.; Malan, E. G.; Oldfield, G. N.; Plewman, R. P.; Radford, A.; Raw, W. V.; Ross, D. G.; Russell, J. H.; Shearer, O. L.; Smit, D. L.; Steenkamp, L. S.; Steyn, S. J. M.; Steytler, J. van A.; Streicher, D. M.; Suzman. H.; Swart, H. G.; Tucker, H.; van Niekerk, S. M.; van Ryneveld, C. B.; Waterson, S. F.; Williams, T. O.
Tellers: A. Hopewell and T. G. Hughes.
Motion accordingly agreed to.
Bill read a third time.
Fourth Order read: Third reading,—National Parks Amendment Bill.
Bill read a third time.
Fifth Order read: Third reading,—Payment of Members of Parliament Bill.
Bill read a third time.
Sixth Order read: House to go into Committee on War Special Pensions Amendment Bill.
House in Committee:
Clauses, Schedules and Title of the Bill put and agreed to.
Bill reported without amendment.
Bill read a third time.
Ninth Order read: House to resume in Committee of Supply.
House in Committee:
[Progress reported on 13 June, when Votes Nos. 2 to 34, 36 to 47 and the Estimates of Expenditure from Bantu Education Account had been agreed to and Vote No. 35.—“Bantu Administration and Development”, R23,600,000, was under consideration, upon which an amendment had been moved by Mr. Hughes.]
Mr. Chairman, in the debate last night much was said about the Government’s policy of giving independence to the Natives in the reserves, but except for the speech made by the hon. member for Houghton (Mrs. Suzman) very little was said about the urban Native, a problem which transcends every other consideration. By a political fiction the urban Native is regarded as a migrant worker when in fact he is not. The Government has spent millions in providing permanent townships and transport facilities for these people whose presence is essential to our economy, but all the housing in the world will not cure the bitterness that a respectable Native feels if he is arrested and put in gaol for trifling offences, or his progress is thwarted by job reservation. The question I wish to raise is one which is at the root of most of the disturbances that have been a feature of our lives. I refer to the complex of laws and regulations that makes the life of the urban Native one of constant apprehension and fear and which constitutes a challenge to the great cause of individual freedom and public law. One would have hoped that with the advent of the changes in our Constitution the Government would have given some relief from the stringency of the older laws and taken the opportunity to build up a tolerant and more compassionate system of Government for these people, a system that would make an appeal not only to South Africa but to the conscience of humanity.
In a statement at Pretoria last November the hon. Minister said the object was to eliminate regulations that caused irritation to the Bantu in the White areas and to remove regulations which imposed unnecessary hardships. Sir, with these pious sentiments we are all in agreement, but nothing whatsoever has been done to implement this conception. Instead of that, a draft Bill was circulated among local authorities and other bodies, called the Bantu in European Areas Bill, 1961, for their comments. This draft Bill has raised such a storm of protest that the Minister was forced to make a statement to the effect that the Bill was purely tentative. I cannot discuss the details of the proposals contained in this draft Bill, except to say that it was the embodiment of all the restrictive regulations that have been responsible for the resentment we find among the Native people to-day, and whatever the Minister may say to the contrary it shows the mentality of the Minister and some of his subordinates in regard to these restrictions.
According to the annual reports of the Commissioner of Police for 1957, 1958 and 1959. there has been an enormous growth in the number of Natives brought before the courts for contraventions of regulations for which the hon. the Minister is responsible. The latest figures available, for 1959, amount to over 800,000 and they must considerably higher for 1960 and 1961. There is no doubt that most of the riots and disturbances that have occurred in recent months have been due to the harsh administration of these irritating regulations, regulations that are frustrating and destructive of normal family life and provide a wide field for communist agitators.
The most destructive regulations are those that fall under Section 10 of the Natives (Urban Areas) Act as it has been amended from time to time by the Minister and his predecessor. It is what is called the “72-hour section”, which forbids a Native of whatever educational standing from remaining in an urban or proclaimed area for more than 72 hours without a permit unless he has since birth resided there continuously or has worked continuously for one employer for not less than ten years, or who has lawfully resided there for not less than 15 years. Sir, unfortunately time does not permit me to deal with specific instances, but cases happen every day that must shock the conscience of any thoughtful observer, of Natives in search of employment who have lost their jobs being shunted from pillar to post, of the cruel separation of husband and wife and the break-up of families as a result of the stringent application of the regulations that have been brought into operation to control the Natives’ movements and their employment. I can only mention in the time at my disposal a specific case that came to my notice quite recently. A respectable middle-class Native, born in a Native area, who had worked in an urban area off and on for 14 years, lost his job owing to the death of his last employer, for whom he had worked continuously for eight years. He was a married man and occupied a house in an urban location with his wife and children. He reported at the pass office and desired a permit to seek work, but as he had not worked continuously for the same employer for ten years he was endorsed out and told to return to his birthplace, where he and his family would have starved. Eventually, as the result of urgent representations made by me on his behalf, a permit was granted and he obtained suitable employment and was allowed to stay. The pass officer was a very sympathetic man, but he told me that there were large numbers of similar cases and that he was bound by his instructions and was often at his wits’ end to know what to do. I ask you, Sir, just to imagine the bitterness that follows in a case such as I have mentioned where permission is refused. A Native who complies with these requirements may absent himself from the urban area for a period not exceeding 12 months, provided he returns to the same employer and engages in the same class of work as before. And the pass officer, in granting a permit to seek work or change his work, may indicate the class of work in which the Native may accept employment. That is another form of job reservation that restricts a Native from undertaking the class of work for which he is better fitted. In the long run these restrictive laws will achieve nothing except to cause a lot of unhappiness amongst the people who suffer under them. The Government talks of apartheid but themselves condone and practise integration. Since they came into office the Native urban population has increased by 1,000,000 and nothing they have done can stop it. The fact is that our urban Native populations are overwhelmingly the principal supports upon which the prosperity of our country rests. That prosperity has been built up on the economic integration of Native labour, and that economic integration cannot be reversed without bringing economic disaster to South Africa. In any event, whatever plans the Government may have to reduce the Native urban population, there will always be the stubborn fact that there is nowhere for them to go except to the existing reserves.
Sir, statements that the reserves, properly managed, can carry many times their present number is utter nonsense. There is not enough room in the reserves to absorb the normal increase. In their present state the reserves are fast becoming overcrowded, and many of them are rural slums with a steady stream moving towards the towns. No foreseeable development of the reserves can change that, and the great majority of the Natives outside the reserves will never go back to them. Sir, what we believe in must be based on permanence, with home ownership and family life, the removal of job reservation that keeps Native labour poor and unstable, and the modification of the pass laws and other unnecessary forms of discrimination, which are essential to achieve that object.
Mr. Chairman, perhaps I should reply to a few of the points raised. I do not want to deal with the speech of the hon. member for East London (City) (Dr. D. L. Smit) immediately, but I shall revert to it at a later stage.
In the first place I want to express my appreciation of the reasonable and objective way in which the criticism of our policy has been submitted this year. For the first time in recent years hon. members have expressed a measure of appreciation for what this Government is doing for the Bantu. Here I want to refer particularly to the appreciative words which have come from the hon. member for Transkeian Territories (Mr. Hughes). I really appreciate this because it has always been my conviction that our Bantu problem should not be so heated a political issue as it has been in the past. When something good is done for the Bantu, it is being done in the interests of South Africa, and when I hear these words of appreciation, I know that these are not so much words of appreciation for what the National Party is doing, but for what South Africa is doing in the interests of the Bantu. I should like to see us moving further in this direction in the future. Even when there are things that are wrong, as I have so often said in the past, we must adopt the attitude that the Bantu problem is our common responsibility. It is not only the responsibility of the Government. It is a difficult problem, as everyone must admit, and for that reason I have invited hon. members opposite when problems are brought to their notice, to approach me and my officials at all times. Our common task is to see how we can solve these problems in the interests of South Africa. For that reason it will always be my aim to meet hon. members of the Opposition—hon. members on this side do so on a large scale—if there are problems which they want to bring to my notice. I want to say that certain Opposition members have already done so and I appreciate it. It has contributed towards the solution of certain problems which existed and which have perhaps not been brought all that pertinently to our notice. This is the spirit in which I should like to see us approach this whole problem. This is the climate which must be created for the whole of South Africa, and in respect of the Bantu as well.
There are one or two misconceptions which I should like to remove immediately. The remark has been made that one of the difficulties is perhaps that the hon. the Prime Minister has adopted such a granite-like attitude towards this problem and, as the newspapers are also saying, we would perhaps make more rapid progress were it not for his attitude. I want to say at once that we must not forget that in these matters the Prime Minister is one of the most reasonable persons South Africa has ever produced. The person who tackled the problems involved in housing and the development of the Bantu areas and health services, is in fact the hon. the Prime Minister. As far as this policy is concerned, we stand solidly behind him and he is in fact the person who takes the lead. I repeat that there are few people who have had the courage to initiate a process of development in all spheres for the Bantu as the Prime Minister has done. I therefore think that it is not reasonable of hon. members and of the Press to try to create the impression that he is the person who stands in the way of good relations and the development of the Bantu. On the contrary, I can only say that there are few people who stand in higher regard in the life of the Bantu than the Prime Minister. He is a legendary figure in their lives. We must not forget that one of the characteristics of the Bantu is that when he admires a person, he composes songs in praise of such a person and that the last great person for whom songs of praise came from the heart of the Bantu to the same extent was the late President Kruger, and Somtseu in Natal. I therefore think that we should have appreciation for the courage which the Prime Minister revealed in creating these sound relations and in initiating this process of development by giving an effective lead in this regard.
There is a second misconception which I should like to remove. Hon. members have said that one of the difficulties is that members on this side have made conflicting statements on the policy of apartheid and the future of the Bantu and that as a result confusion has been created amongst the Bantu. I want to reject that argument immediately. The confusion which has been created amongst the Bantu emanates in the first place from the Opposition Press and I want to repeat to-day that one notices here and there a measure of improvement but there is still a great deal of irresponsibility. This is a very delicate problem which must be handled very carefully and very seriously. For that reason one expects all sections of the Press to adopt a responsible attitude towards this problem because it involves the interests of South Africa and not only those of the National Party. I regard the establishment of good relations between White and Bantu as one of the great tasks facing South Africa because here a creative process is taking place which will be of value not only to us in South Africa but which will also have a message for the rest of Africa. We therefore have a duty not only to South Africa but to the rest of Africa. I therefore appeal to the Press to adopt a serious attitude towards this matter and at least to reveal a moral attitude which will be worthy of South Africa and not to act in such an irresponsible fashion. Often the most minor incident for which some individual is responsible is grasped and it is exaggerated in the Press as being characteristic of the people of South Africa. The harm which this type of behaviour does to South Africa and the White man in South Africa, and not merely the National Party, is incalculable, and I sincerely hope that the time has come when our Press will reveal a greater sense of responsibility in respect of these matters.
But hon. members of the Opposition also sin greatly in this regard. I think that they can really make a contribution by approaching these matters with a deep sense of responsibility, and we have already had indications that they are doing so. Unfortunately, the hon. member for East London (City) (Dr. D. L. Smit) has not yet revealed this spirit, and I regret this very greatly, because I have known him for many years past, and I know that when we are outside he is one of the best people I know. I have a very great regard for him, but it is strange that, when he rises here, he is full of bitterness, and he makes claims which are really unfounded, but to which I shall revert presently. I, therefore, think that it is the task of anyone in this House, no matter on which side we may sit, to act with great care and to act in such a way that we shall not create the impression, particularly amongst the Bantu, that here in South Africa there are people who are oppressing them. I think that if there is a country of which that is not true, it is South Africa. There is one thing which has struck me particularly in recent times, and that is the great percentage of Whites throughout South Africa who are inspired by the concept that justice must be done to the Bantu. To me this is so typical of the spirit of our forefathers in South Africa. I must honestly say that in recent times we have found a spirit, particularly amongst the younger people, which is not characteristic of South Africa, namely, to treat the non-Whites in a contemptuous way. This is not characteristic of the people of South Africa; this is a foreign spirit, a spirit which I do not know, and it must be eradicated root and branch. I am glad to be able to say that we can see to-day that the seriousness of this matter is realized in most quarters; in most instances the people realize that we must act differently. I just want to repeat this submission which I made the other night as well; the traditional approach in South Africa is not one of equality; it is not a policy of achieving equality. The traditional approach has always been a policy of recognizing the equal status (gelykwaardigheid) of the Bantu, a policy of differentiation (anderswaardigheid), but differentiation without inferiority (minderwaardigheid). This is my approach to this problem of the Bantu, and it is the basis of the approach of the people of South Africa. Mr. Chairman, you can study the whole history of South Africa and you will not be able to show me one nation in the world which has treated its indigenous peoples in such a humane way as the people of South Africa. Time does not allow me to dwell on this point, but I want to put this submission clearly. That is why it is our duty on both sides not to follow a policy which will place the one or other side under suspicion. Let us rather discuss the matter frankly. It is necessary that we should criticize one another’s policies, but let us do so in an objective way; let us examine the pros and cons, and let us do so in such a way that the Bantu will also appreciate the dignity of our behaviour. This type of thing that has been done in the past, namely, that any person who does not agree with the National Party has drawn up a policy of apartheid and described it as such, and has told the world that this is the policy of apartheid while it is not the policy of apartheid at all, is not helping South Africa. What is more, it is so immoral that it shocks most people. I agree with the hon. member for Transkeian Territories (Mr. Hughes) that the Bantu know what is said here and what appears not only in Hansard. but in the Press to a far greater extent than people realize. For that reason it is so necessary that we should be honest and sincere in respect of these matters. We have had the phenomenon that there have already been several cases—and I am not referring to the Press again—where the Bantu have said: Look, these newspapers publish so many distorted reports that we do not want their representatives at our meetings. I do not think that this is a healthy phenomenon, and I am sorry that this phenomenon is already present, and I want to prophesy that it will become ever more evident if the Press and many Opposition members do not change their attitude towards this matter. I repeat that the Bantu are very well informed about what is happening.
I now want to come to the important matter which the hon. member for Transkeian Territories has raised, namely the Government’s policy as regards the future and particularly the political future of the Bantu homelands. This matter has been made quite clear and I do not want to enlarge on it unduly. I just want to repeat what the hon. the Prime Minister has said, because it is the basis of our policy—hence the Bantu self-government legislation—that we wish to guide these various national groups as rapidly as possible towards managing their own affairs. That is the basis of our policy and if I am not mistaken, we have been having indications in recent times, particularly in the past few months, from the United Party that they too envisage a type of self-government for the Bantu in their own areas. I shall return to that aspect presently. I want to repeat what I have said in respect of the Transkei. I have made it quite clear that I regard it as my task to guide the Transkeian Territories as rapidly as possible towards managing their own affairs. I should like to see them building up their own public service as rapidly as possible so that the various aspects of their national life can be handed over to them so that they can control them themselves. At the last session of the Transkeian Territorial Authority they had a debate on this matter and I want to say at once that I have sufficient information to know that this proposal was actually inspired by Whites, but I think that it was a very good thing that it was discussed. As hon. members will know, here and there an irresponsible statement was made. There is for example the statement that a large part of the Cape must be incorporated into the Transkeian Territories, and so on. But we must not forget that even in this House we have had White Members of Parliament making equally irresponsible statements. We must therefore not regard these statements as being representative of the opinion of the Bantu in those areas. On the contrary, when one reads the reports and the speeches made, one is impressed by the responsible spirit which prevails and the serious attitude adopted by most of those Bantu. Eventually they stated almost unanimously that this question of self-government for the Bantu in the Transkei must be handled judiciously and not with excessive haste. It must be a process of evolution. I say that they revealed a sense of responsibility which is truly striking and which was a source of satisfaction to me and which has given me a greater admiration for the political acumen of the Bantu. But what did we find in the Press? This one statement by an irresponsible member was front-page news which was broadcast to the world and the responsible statements by the chairman and other responsible Bantu were only reported in a few sentences. In most instances they were not reported. This is the type of thing that happens, but eventually after discussing the motion, the mover withdrew it and they decided to appoint a commission to go into the implications of such a process, and I think that this was a very wise decision. It is necessary that they should be actively integrated into this process of achieving self-government and of general development so that they will see from time to time what the implications will be and what their own responsibilities will be. I think that this is a very good thing. We have now had this phenomenon. In this House hon. members have in season and out of season described these Bantu as the “stooges” of the Government. They have been belittled in season and out of season. It has even been said that they receive a small allowance from the Government and that for the sake of that allowance they will never express a word of criticism of the Government’s policy. I have always denied this and I have said that this is an unjustifiable accusation which is being levelled at these responsible leaders—because they are responsible leaders. Here my attitude has been confirmed. Despite everything Opposition members have said from time to time, these people have put their case frankly and in most cases in a dignified way and the necessary attention is being given to these matters. Where are the “stooges” of this Government now? Nor are they becoming the “stooges” of the Government. Here it is a question that we are dealing with a process which is taking place elsewhere in Africa and which we cannot escape and which must be carried to its logical consequence in this country, and the way to avoid what has happened in the Congo and what is happening elsewhere in Africa is to ensure that this conservative element in the life of the Bantu, their traditional leaders—not self-appointed leaders, but their traditional leaders—who have led the Bantu people hitherto, are the persons who will take the lead in these matters and not these irresponsible elements which have only one aim, namely to fill their own pockets and which are instruments in the hands of communistic elements. That is why I want to take this opportunity to pay a tribute to the responsible attitude which was revealed at the meeting of the Transkeian Territorial Authority recently. This is nothing to fear. On the contrary, we have had proof that they are moving along very sound lines.
Hon. members have read out the statement which I have made to the Cape Times. I just want to say that I repeat every word of what I have said there. I repeat it here because that is the policy of this Government. It is the policy of the Government to help these people to develop as rapidly as possible and to enable them to manage their own affairs in their own areas. We must therefore have no illusions on this point. I just want to announce that I have already issued instructions that as far as possible we must integrate the inhabitants of the Transkeian Territories who are educated and whom we can use in various posts, into the organization which we are building up in the Transkei so that we can hand these tasks to an ever-increasing extent over to the Bantu themselves. The hon. member for Transkeian Territories has contended that if this stage is reached we shall once again see large-scale tribal fights in those areas; that they are not able to do those things, etc. Well, that is the old story which I have encountered elsewhere in Africa as well. And I want to say frankly that in principle I reject it. I am convinced that with the right guidance the Bantu have such a sense of responsibility and have such creative ability that they are capable of making a success of these matters in this country. I want to reaffirm once again that I have an unequivocal faith in the Bantu, and I am convinced that although we find that many of these Bantu are allowing themselves to be misled by Bantu agitators in particular—hired Bantu agitators—the overwhelming majority of them will never lend themselves to the service of the evil forces which are prevalent to-day in other parts of Africa. On the contrary, even in the Territorial Authorities of the Transkei and other areas we find a spirit of co-operation in this sphere such as we have never experienced before. I therefore want to state clearly that it is our policy to train these people as rapidly as possible to manage their own affairs in those areas.
I have been asked what is going to happen to the coastal areas when independence comes; what is going to happen to our coast as far as other powers are concerned. I want to make this quite clear. The Commissioner-General for the Transkei has rightly indicated that a distinction is drawn between full independence and self-government, but that distinction has always been drawn, and the Prime Minister has made it quite clear that if they reach the stage that they want full independence in those areas, that is of course a matter which will have to be considered. But I want to make this submission quite clearly to-day, namely that experience has taught that these people have no intention of separating the present Transkei from South Africa as a completely independent state. On the contrary they are not thinking of it. Here and there one finds an irresponsible element, and this idea has been placed in their heads by certain Whites. But the masses in those areas do not want to hear of it; they do not even want to think of the Transkei being separated from South Africa as a completely independent territory. I might just say that the Bantu Self-Government Act makes the whole position quite clear as regards the direction in which we are moving and no indication is given to the effect that these areas are simply going to break away immediately. I therefore think that we are rendering South Africa a very great disservice and that we are rendering the Bantu themselves a very great disservice if we claim that they want to separate the Transkei from South Africa and wish to turn it into a complete independent state which will want nothing to do with South Africa and which will simply be handed over to Communism. Certain White people in the Transkei are very fond of putting these proposals; they do not realize that they are rendering themselves a disservice by this type of talk. A few months ago I had the experience that when an important person spoke of “your area”, one of the leading chiefs replied: “No, not ‘your area’, this our area; I love South Africa too much.” That is the attitude which they adopt. Why must we now come forward with this type of scaremongering story to the effect that a second Congo will arise; that Russian ships will descend on those areas, and so on? No, by so doing we are not rendering South Africa a service and this is not a responsible way in which to act. If there are implications involved in this policy, it is necessary to state them, but this scaremongering, this conjuring up of ghosts in respect of our policy, no longer has any effect on the people; they are old stories. I, therefore, want to appeal to hon. members rather not to spread this type of story. In addition, I think it is unreasonable towards the Bantu to belittle them as being people who have no creative ability. We know that the processes which have developed over the past 200 or 300 years is that inferiority is linked to a black skin. What has been responsible for that? It is mostly Whites who upheld the policy of equality who were the cause of this attitude. They wanted to turn the Bantu into a Westerner. They did not want to grant him the opportunity to develop along his own lines. I said the other evening and I want to repeat it, that one of the tragic phenomena is the following: What is the “equality” of many of these people who advocate so-called equality? His “equality” is the retention of what is his own and the condemnation of what is peculiar to the other man. He comes to the Bantu and he says: “Look, we are equal but we are so equal that you must only speak my language, your language means nothing to me; we are so equal that your have no culture, only my culture counts. We are so equal that we must pray together in the same church but not in your church; it is an inferior church, we must worship together in my church.” That is his attitude. These people so often say that they respect the dignity of the individual, but I must honestly say that examined scientifically I cannot imagine a more blatant “herrenvolk” attitude than that which I find amongst these people who are so full of “equality”. They want to retain that which is their own while the other man has no say on that which is his own is worthless. This is a “herrenvolk” concept. Our attitude is that there are differences (anderswaardigheid) but these are differences which are not accompanied by inferiority. We believe that he must have his own church which he can develop fully just as the ’White man has developed his church, and that applies to his political institutions and his cultural institutions. That is why this principle forms the basis of our approach to the development of the Bantu areas. I repeat that I want to develop not only the Transkei but also the other areas as rapidly as possible so that they can control their own affairs.
I have been asked another question, and much has been made of this, namely where are the borders of these areas to be found? This is an old question and I have already answered it so often that I am surprised that I still find hon. members in this House asking this question. I have made it quite clear that there are these heartlands. The whole object is to bring about a process of consolidation in these heartlands as far as is possible. I assume that in many cases we will not be able to consolidate them into one bloc. The Tswanas, for example, may have two or three or more blocs, and thus we shall have two blocs here and there, but the principle is that, just as we are consolidating the human resources so that they will undertake their own developmental work, so that they will be integrated into that work actively themselves, so we are, together with territorial authorities, systematically bringing their own areas nearer together. I can just say that we have achieved very great success. At the moment we are engaged on the consolidation of nearly 100 such black spots. In an area such as Natal where we experienced some opposition from the Zulus, they are now asking us to move them nearer to the Zulu areas, and thus I could give many examples. The territorial authorities must first be established and now that the territorial authorities have been established in most instances, we find that this process is becoming ever easier. Instead of us having to beg these people to move to their own areas, they now ask us whether they can go to those areas. I have a striking example which I want to mention. Hon. members will remember that a little while ago we wished to move a group of Bantu who were living in the mountains near Tzaneen. We wanted to move them nearer to their own area, to a place which was far better than that in which they had been living. Hon. members opposite then made a terrible fuss, especially the hon. member for East London (City) (Dr. D. L. Smit). He went with me there and he stood and looked at the area and he said: “It is terrible to see this place”, but when we wanted to move them he opposed us.
Is it not correct to say that the opposition was based on the fact that the Natives had not been consulted and that they had not had an opportunity to appear before the Select Committee? That was the position —not that we objected to the removal.
Yes, all sorts of reasons were put forward, and that was one of them, but the fact of the matter is that we stated repeatedly that those people had been consulted by no one less than the hon. the Prime Minister. He told them: “Look, I shall give you that farm.” Those people then danced for him, so pleased were they. Then the agitators entered the picture.
They were eventually moved. One section went voluntarily and they are prospering. And where is the man who took the lead in this matter, namely Senator Basner? He is now sitting, so I am informed, in Tanganyika. And is he there alone? No, he is sitting there with their money. The other day they nearly beat to death one of the leaders who was prominent in this matter. They want their money and now he cannot give it to them; they are angry with him, but the damage has been done. This is the result of this type of behaviour on the part of the United Party. I must now protect this man who took the lead in this matter. He is a Bantu. They are threatening to beat him to death. Most of these people are grateful to us to-day for moving them to the Bantu area where they are very contended. In the same way we find this phenomenon elsewhere. Hon. members must not forget that most of these black spots do not consist of large areas; they are mostly small areas. This process therefore will not be as difficult as hon. members claim. Once it has been achieved, we shall find that the process of self-government will also be far more effective than it is perhaps to-day or than it has ever been in the past. The fact of the matter is that it is already so effective to-day that we are finding that these good results are being achieved. Hon. members must not come and tell me: Look, draw a line which will represent the borders of the Bantu areas. In general we have indicated how this process will develop. The practical man, particularly the practical man who is a farmer, knows that this is a practical process. But I want to go further. The hon. the Leader of the Opposition has also announced that he is in favour of a federal state. I should first like to see the borders of his state, because they insist that one must first have a map before one tackles any development. I should very much like to see the Leader of the Opposition’s map which indicates the borders of these federal states. I think that before the hon. member for East London (City) puts his question to me, he should first put it to his leader, and if he shows me where the borders of these federal states will run, then I shall be able to show him more or less where the borders of the Bantu areas will be. I am quite prepared to accept this challenge of theirs.
In other words, you cannot decide what you want to do yourself.
I have been challenged to prove what I have stated on previous occasions, namely that relations between White and Bantu have never been better than they are to-day. I accept this challenge and I am going to state that belief to-day with greater confidence and greater emphasis than in the past. Never before in the history of South Africa have we found such a favourable attitude amongst the mass of the Bantu towards the White man, towards the Government, than we have to-day, and I just want to prove this by one or two examples. My first proof is represented by the past few days during which we established the Republic. We must not forget that throughout South Africa every possible effort was made to persuade the Bantu to remain at home, to boycott everything. There were threats, people were appointed to intimidate the Bantu, and a large section of the English-language Press was nothing but a propaganda machine aimed at bringing about this state of mind.
What would you do without the English Press?
Mr. Chairman, I could detain the House for hours by giving examples. I have here a full report on what happened in every area, and I could detain this House for hours to-day giving examples of Whites who took the lead mostly behind the scenes in an attempt to bring about such a state of affairs. Many of them did not only do so behind the scenes; they went into the Bantu areas, into the locations, secretly, in order to do propaganda work there. The Bantu are telling us about these things to-day and they would not lie.
Where did they obtain permits to enter the locations?
What was the result? The result was in the first place that there were no disturbances in any part of the country. Here and there we had a little unpleasantness, but on a scale which surprised everyone and a scale which bitterly disappointed the outside world. Why was that possible? Do hon. members want to tell me that the Bantu were afraid of these few policemen or the military forces? One of the main reasons was that we very soon clamped down on tsotis and intimidators. That was one of the most important reasons. But even if we had called out the entire Police Force and the entire army but not the co-operation of the Bantu, we would not have succeeded in preserving order. They would simply have remained at home. But they did not do so. They refused to be a party to these evil methods which Whites tried to use in South Africa. But my most important proof is that for the first time we have found that the law-abiding Bantu are starting to hit back. They did not go like sheep, as we saw here the year before last when a small Basuto led nearly 8,000 Xhosas like a lot of sheep because he had had them intimidated. In recent times we have noticed that the law-abiding Bantu have started to hit back and where they were attacked in areas such as Port Elizabeth and elsewhere, they formed themselves into groups and they defended themselves. Throughout South Africa we have found the Bantu saying: Look, we are now tired of these things and we are now going to hit back. This is one of the best types of proof which one can submit. If we had not had co-operation and faith in this policy we would not have had this co-operation. But I want to give a second example, and it is the large-scale co-operation which we are enjoying to-day in the developmental processes which we are initiating everywhere. When did this happen before? The hon. member for East London (City) knows that one of his most difficult tasks was to build a few little contour walls in the Bantu locations and just see what progress we have made with these development works in most parts of the country. We are undertaking large-scale development works this year and everywhere in the country my officials are discussing these matters with the Bantu themselves. What we are encountering everywhere is a spirit of cooperation, a spirit of faith in this development which has been launched for the Bantu and which is in the interests of South Africa. Here I want to make an appeal particularly on our Press and our Opposition members, no matter to which party they may belong. In this respect we must not create a feeling of suspicion. It is a difficult task to persuade the Bantu initially to agree to these development works. I therefore ask hon. members to help us to create confidence rather than mistrust. Because once the Bantu have started such development work, once one has created that confidence, the task is not only an easy one, but it is truly a pleasure. I just want to make this submission: We must remember that this development is not only in the interests of the Bantu themselves but also in the interests of South Africa as a whole. One of the most striking things which experts proved in a recent report by UNO was that when they started with the development of the underdeveloped countries, the industrialists of various countries of the world objected to the development of industries in the under-developed countries. They said: What will become of the industries in the White countries concerned? These industries will retrogress. But the result to-day is exactly the reverse. Not only has considerable industrial development taken place in some of these countries but the result of this industrial development has been that a greater demand has been created and instead of the development of industries elsewhere in the world being retarded, those industries have in fact been so stimulated that they have expanded further. And that is the process which is taking place in South Africa. With every development work which we are undertaking in those areas, we are creating a future for these Bantu but at the same time a future for South Africa itself as well. This is one of our important tasks—and I am glad the hon. member for Transkeian Territories has raised the matter, namely to create lebensraum for these Bantu in their own areas.
I say that this is a difficult and a great task, but, nevertheless, we can do it, and we can do so with the necessary devotion and the necessary sacrifices. There are people who are going around and saying that it will demand terrible sacrifices of South Africa. I reject this type of pessimistic picture which is being held up to the people, a picture which is intended to frighten them. When the Tomlinson Report was published, it was stated that R208,000,000 would be necessary, and members rose here and said: “Look, what will now become of South Africa?” But, Mr. Speaker, we have spent more than R200,000,000 on housing in the White areas alone in order to provide the necessary residential facilities for the Bantu.
How much has been spent on housing in the Native areas?
These pessimists are being routed by the facts. A large amount has not yet been spent on housing in the Native areas, but one of our main tasks is to establish large cities in the Bantu areas as well and to tackle housing schemes which will be the property of the Bantu themselves, and where they will be able to develop their own tertiary industries. This is one of the cornerstones of our policy of development in the Bantu areas. But this is something which cannot happen overnight! There are two important considerations which we must bear in mind in this regard. The first is the capacity of the Bantu in the Bantu areas to absorb such development. It is pointless creating opportunities if the Bantu cannot absorb them. The other consideration which must be taken into account in this regard is the carrying capacity of the White man in South Africa. Here I just want to repeat what has already been said before, namely, that there is no country in the world where so small a group of White people are doing so much for so many non-Whites.
Who is going to pay for the establishment of cities in the Bantu areas?
To a large extent the Bantu will have to pay for those cities themselves. After all, they will sooner or later acquire freehold rights, and they will be able to develop there, but at the same time it will be the duty of the White man to create opportunities for the Bantu in those areas, so that they can earn a livelihood. That is the reason for our policy of developing all possible opportunities in those areas, and to develop them along such lines that the Bantu themselves will profit from them. In every sphere we want to develop a diversified economy in the Bantu areas in such a way that we shall really create lebensraum for them. If we bear in mind how many people we shall require for the administration of these areas, for the running of these areas in every sphere, we can see how many trained Bantu will be needed in those areas. It will be a very large number. We shall need many of them to develop the tertiary industries of these areas. I am, therefore, not pessimistic about the future at all. The hon. member for East London (City) has asked me what we are going to do with those Bantu who are now being trained on such a large scale. Allow me to say at once that I hope the day is not far removed in South Africa when every Bantu will be able to read and write and undergo spiritual development. We are rapidly approaching that target. To-day we can already claim that there is not one country in Africa where the literacy percentage amongst its non-White people is as high as in the Republic of South Africa.
Then they read the English newspapers as well?
Yes, they are reading the English newspapers, but they are also starting to read the Afrikaans newspapers, and they are starting to read their own newspapers. I want to repeat that I am in favour of our creating every possible educational facility for the Bantu, because we need every educated Bantu to carry out the task which awaits us, and if we do our duty, not one of them will need to walk the streets. As a matter of fact, this development has already advanced to such a stage that it is no longer necessary for them to walk the streets to-day.
I want to discuss another matter—a matter which is causing me many headaches, and one which the hon. member for Salt River (Mr. Lawrence) has raised. That is to say, the problem of the foreign Bantu in South Africa. My own estimate is that to-day we easily have 1,000,000 foreign Bantu in our country, and I am now faced with the dilemma that wherever I go in the country, I find our own Bantu blaming me because some of them cannot get work while foreign Bantu are filling many posts. Then they ask whether the time has not come when the foreign Bantu should be returned on a large scale. This is a very serious matter and one finds many tragic cases. There are people here from other areas who just do not want to hear about going back to their own areas. I recently met a Bantu who is here from Tanganyika, and he actually cried before me like a child and said that he did not want to go back. When I told him that his future Prime Minister, Julius Nyerere, was there—the hero of the Progressive Party—and was asking that they should come back, this Bantu said that he would go back, but that he would take his knife for Nyerere with him! He meant this as a joke, but the fact of the matter is that these people simply do not want to go back. We find this position amongst all groups. For this reason I have considered it necessary to appoint an inter-departmental committee which can go very thoroughly into the matter and also into the question of Natives from the Protectorates, because hon. members must not forget that there are many Bantu from Basutoland in this country. As a matter of fact, Basutoland cannot do without us. I have appointed an inter-departmental committee and it will investigate this whole matter as soon as possible and report to me so that we can see whether we cannot find some basis on which to act in respect of this matter. But I want to say that we shall have to close our eyes, no matter how unpleasant it may be, because our primary and our moral duty is to our own Bantu, because we do not have the right to allow Bantu from countries which condemn us to take the cream from our own Bantu. That we cannot allow. Just as I cannot allow the White man to take the cream from the Bantu areas, so I cannot allow a foreign Bantu to take work from our own Bantu. This is a moral duty which I have towards them. But I want to repeat that there are difficult and unpleasant problems, but these problems will have to receive special attention.
Will Members of Parliament be able to give evidence before the committee or discuss matters with its members? I should like to do so if it is possible.
I shall be very glad if Members of Parliament will give evidence before the committee although I should like to have a discussion with the hon. member for Salt River in order to learn his opinions because the hon. member has already been taking an interest in this matter for some years past. I shall therefore have a detailed discussion with him on the matter, but I shall be glad if hon. members will give evidence before this committee and suggest plans as to how this problem should be tackled. It is the basis of my approach that we must give preference as far as job opportunities are concerned to our own Bantu. At the moment foreign Bantu are holding some of the best jobs. Then I also want to point out that unfortunately there are those Natives amongst these foreign Natives who are abusing the privileges which they enjoy in South Africa. Thus there was a group from Nyasaland who did not hesitate to establish a Malawi Congress Party in Johannesburg and elsewhere. It is obvious that when I can get hold of them, I shall not hesitate to send them back immediately. Unfortunately there is this phenomenon but it is receiving my serious attention.
A few matters of general importance have also been raised. The hon. member for Houghton (Mrs. Suzman) has once again come with one of her wild stories about a Bantu who has supposedly been treated so unfairly, a Bantu who could not count to ten.
I have received a letter dealing with this case from your own Department.
I have already said so often that if hon. members learn of cases where Bantu are not being treated fairly such cases should immediately be brought to the notice of the officials of my Department. It is an instruction to all officials that they should not only treat the Bantu fairly but courteously as well.
But I have done so.
Yes, I concede that the hon. member has done so, but I now ask why she has broadcast this beautiful story through the Press to the world. What purpose and who is she serving by doing so? Does she think that she is serving the Bantu by doing so? Does she think that she is serving her own cause by doing so? No! This is the type of thing which does not pay in South Africa. But I am now faced with the difficult position that here in Cape Town and elsewhere there are a number of old women, of whom the hon. member is perhaps one, who do not know what to do with their time, and they then spend their time carrying around stories which idlers have told them. I know because I have already had many of these stories brought to my notice, but when I investigate these stories I find that there is no truth in them. I want to warn hon. members that idle Bantu, Bantu who do not want to work, tell beautiful stories—they have the ability to dish up a fine story. In this regard I want to tell the following anecdote: I had a fine collection of Kruger coins. A Nyasaland Native then stole them but was caught. In the court however he swore under oath that he had not stolen the money, but that the spirit of his grandfather brought him a pound every Friday! He said that if he stood on a street corner and looked in the direction of Nyasaland, his father’s spirit came and gave him a gold pound. Mr. Speaker, this is the type of difficulty with which we are faced. I want to repeat that we find in the case of the idle Native that he has the ability to dish up this type of story. But we do not only find it in the case of the Bantu but in the case of the White man as well! If I think of the stories which I have heard in Hyde Park, Belgium, Holland and France from Whites as to how they are supposedly oppressed! There are Whites who have told that they are so oppressed that they do not even have a piece of food to eat, and one is then asked to do something for them or one is even asked to take them with one to South Africa. This is therefore a phenomenon which is found in the case of every nation, but we now have people, such as the hon. member for Houghton, who are prepared to accept all these stories and to broadcast them to the world and to tell the world how bad South Africa is. I admit that, as happens everywhere in society, there are also cases amongst the Bantu where one or other Bantu is treated unfairly, but my officials are to be found everywhere and it is the duty of every person who feels that he has a reasonable case to bring it to the notice of the officials. They will help, and if there are officials who do not want to help but who treat them unreasonably and discourteously, I shall not hesitate to take action against them. I shall not hesitate because I consider that one of our most important tasks in South Africa is to create the correct human relations. I have often said in the past that problems such as this cannot only be solved by legislation, but also and especially by the public, by the people themselves in their relations with the Bantu. The way in which the Bantu are treated has a tremendous effect. The Bantu must be treated as a human being and on a basis of equal dignity. Here I need not be ashamed of the established White population in South Africa —Afrikaans- as well as English-speaking. There is no other White group in Africa who treat the Bantu in such a humane way as the established White people of South Africa. All the accusations which are made are therefore unfair and unjustified.
I want to say a few words about the allegations which the hon. member for East London (City) has made. He has said that I have introduced a draft Bill which envisages changes in the position of the urban Bantu but this has been a failure and that protests have been made, etc. I have already issued a statement on this point, but what happened was that I instructed a senior officer in my Department who has a good knowledge of this matter to revise all the legislation concerned. He did so, but before I decided on the draft Bill I saw fit to submit it to all the municipalities in South Africa and also to the Chambers of Industry and Commerce and other interested parties. I also organized conferences in many places in order to have the matter discussed. I received excellent co-operation from most organizations and good results were achieved as a result of proposals which emanated from various municipalities and persons. However in this circular I made it quite clear that this matter was confidential and that I was sending the Bill merely with the object of stimulating an exchange of opinions with a view to bringing together the best brains so that we could draw up a good Bill. Nevertheless here and there we found a person or a municipality going to the Press as soon as they received this document and broadcasting misrepresentations. Here I have seen again how morally low and mean some people can be. [Interjections.] These people are the heroes of those hon. members! They are the people who applauded them! But I want to express my appreciation to the practically 95 per cent of the municipalities who helped us in this regard, because by so doing new possibilities have been created. At the moment I am working on all these proposals and a draft Bill will then be drawn up. If it is possible for me to do so I hope to introduce the Bill next session. It was therefore most unreasonable of the hon. member for East London (City) to make these allegations—he who is a former Secretary for Bantu Affairs and who knows how difficult this problem is. I have done my best to expedite the matter and I have appointed persons in all the large municipalities to maintain contact with the municipal authorities on the one hand and the Bantu on the other hand. And now suspicion is being sown against those people! It has even been alleged that I want to interfere with the powers of municipalities! But we have nevertheless created a very sound spirit of co-operation between my Department, the Bantu and the municipalities. In many cases the police have also been brought in to give their opinions as to how conflicts can be avoided and in this way we have really created a spirit of co-operation between all the organizations concerned. In Durban for example it has been so successful that the Mayor has requested that the committee should meet every week instead of every three weeks. And the committee now meets every week and the results which are being achieved are most satisfactory. I have gone further and I have appointed a full-time official to work with the police and to give young policemen guidance as to the best way in which this policy can be applied. Mr. Speaker, it has never been the idea that our policy should be applied harshly. Mistakes have been made but it is our task to see that these things are remedied. Hon. members must therefore not make the accusation that we are not furthering the interests of the Bantu and I therefore think that it was most unreasonable of the hon. member for East London (City) to make this type of speech. I regard him as a responsible person but in recent times he has been one of the few people in this House who has been filled with nothing but bitterness. He must not act like this in his old age. When we talk outside the House he is a good and a decent man with whom one can discuss matters. I hope that he will now shed his bitterness to a large extent.
Mr. Chairman, I want to express my appreciation for several good speeches which have been made by hon. members on this side of the House. It is not necessary for me to reply to them because they have put the position clearly, but if there are matters to which I have not yet replied. I shall refer to them at a later stage.
Business suspended at 12.45 p.m. and resumed at 2.20 p.m.
Mr. Chairman, I wish to avail myself of the half-hour privilege. The hon. Minister of Bantu Administration and Development commenced his speech by stating a fact which we all concede, namely that the Whites in South Africa had done more for the non-Whites than any like community in the rest of Africa. We readily concede that but it is equally true that if it had not been for the co-operation of the non-Whites in South Africa, the Whites would not have enjoyed the position they enjoy to-day. The hon. Minister further made a plea that not only the Press, but also the Opposition parties, should present the policies of the Government in a more objective manner. The hon. Prime Minister took us to task by saying that not only the Opposition Press, but also the Opposition speakers, wrongly presented the policies of the Nationalist Party thereby creating confusion amongst the people. Now. I want to submit that it is not the Opposition Press or the Opposition parties, but the Government spokesmen themselves who make the confusion about their Government’s policies worse confounded. Some years ago. the hon. Prime Minister told us that he and his party rejected racial discrimination as a basis of policy. He made it quite clear that nobody could justify racial discrimination, neither at that time nor subsequently. Speaking in this House the other day, he made it clear once again that it was the aim and object of the Nationalist Party to get away from racial discrimination in its policies. He said that the Nationalist Party intended to do that by way of conceding the right of self-determination to the Bantu in their so-called areas, and made it quite clear that there would be no limitation placed on the Bantu with regard to their development, not only development individually, but also development of their government and independence of their particular areas. That was never said over and over again by the hon. Prime Minister. The hon. Minister of Bantu Administration and Development, however, has made many contradictory statements in regard to this matter. For instance: When he was addressing the conference of Bantu Commissioners in Pietersburg in March this year, he said—
Towards the end of last year, however, in a speech before the Calvinistiese Beweging at Potchefstroom he made it clear that—
Then again, in October 1960, the hon. Minister used these words in the Transkei—
The hon. Deputy Minister, however, within a couple of weeks after that, contradicted the hon. Minister on this very point by saying—
This is also what was said by South Africa’s ambassador in London to the people there. The latest statement on this subject came from the Commissioner-General of the Transkei, namely that—
Now. this morning the hon. Minister said that a clear distinction had to be drawn between self-government and independence. The hon. Ministers owes it now to this House to explain how he is going to prevent racial discrimination if ultimately independence is going to be denied to the people in the reserves. If that is not the policy of the hon. Minister then he either contradicts what the hon. Prime Minister had said, or he cannot make any claim whatsoever to rejecting racial discrimination. It is on this point that we differ profoundly from the Nationalist Party Government. We, in these benches, reject racial discrimination; we believe it cannot be justified; we believe that it cannot be maintained in South Africa without a risk of running into very serious difficulties. The hon. Minister, speaking in the Senate, made it quite clear that he agreed with us and with the Opposition speakers that in order to effect independence to the reserves, it was necessary to consolidate them. Nobody can maintain that the areas as now constituted can be viable and can form the basis of an independent country. The hon. the Minister made a reference this morning to the attempts at consolidation which he has initiated some years ago, and which he is still attempting to bring into effect to-day. The fact of the matter is that there are to-day still 110 official reserves and over 300 Black spots. Admittedly, possibly the hon. the Minister might succeed in the future to consolidate more of these areas, but even on his own argument the hon. the Minister maintains that at most eight national units will remain, for which there will be two or three or four separate areas. What it amounts to is this, that for eight national units you will have two or three or four independent states in South Africa. That is the one fallacy of the argument of the Minister.
The other fallacy of the argument of the hon. the Minister is the fact that in order once again to justify the claim of non-discrimination, the Minister maintains that if you should give self-government rights to the heartlands of these national units then, he admits, to the fact that there will be millions of Africans still working in the European areas, those people will never be content to exercise their rights in those heartlands. The hon. the Minister categorically rejects any idea of total segregation. He most emphatically says that he personally has never believed in a basis of total segregation as a solution to our problems in South Africa. He said that if we accord self-government rights or independence to those units, then the people from those units living in the so-called European areas would be content to exercise their political and other rights within those particular reserves. Then the hon. the Minister draws the parallel between the migratory workers trekking into France every year from Italy looking for work, and the situation in South Africa. He makes the point —quite correctly—that very many of those people stay there for a considerable length of time, yet they never receive any citizenship rights or other rights in France. This is where we differ profoundly. We concede that that is the position in connection with the migrant workers from Italy—and I could mention quite a number of examples throughout the world where the same practice obtains. But the hon. the Minister does not concede the point that there is a vast difference between the migratory workers of Italy and our own fellow South African workers. And the Government will never satisfy their claims to non-discrimination or their claims to justice and fairness if they do not accord people rights at the place where they work, the place where they live and the place where they die. They can never justify their claims on that basis if they deny rights of equal opportunity to all our people.
Your premises are quite wrong.
My dear friend, please give me an opportunity and then get up and make your own speech.
This morning the hon. the Minister said that he does not accord equal rights—gelykstelling —that he rejects. But he claims “gelyke menswaardigheid”. That is his philosophy and, possibly, the philosophy of the Nationalist Party. I fail to see how the hon. the Minister can accord “gelykwaardigheid” to the people if he denies them equal opportunities. I fail to see how with that definition he can support the basis of his policy if, whilst still rejecting discrimination, he still practises that. The entire solution, according to the hon. the Minister, for the trouble that we have in South Africa and the troubles that we have with the outside word, must be solved, he says, (a) by giving these people self-government rights in their own areas and, (b) by never according to them rights of independence. That is according to what he has just said.
Mr. Chairman, we have often said this. I do not question the sincerity with which the hon. the Minister puts his case, but I do question the practicability of what he says. The Minister tells us that throughout the years the Government has spent millions and millions of pounds rehabilitating the so-called reserve areas. The figures quoted here by the hon. the Prime Minister show that since 1955 the sum of £20,000,000—R40,000,000—has been spent. Might I remind the hon. the Minister that in relation to the figure estimated by the Tomlinson Commission this is a mere drop in the ocean. Nevertheless I do want to concede that it is a vast amount of money. Despite the fact that we have spent R40,000,000 what visible proof is there that we have advanced one yard on the road to independence and self-government in those particular areas? The hon. the Minister denies that …
My hon. friends making the noise now deny the fact that in order to rehabilitate those areas so that they can reach a viable state, it will require not £100,000,000 but many thousands of millions of pounds. And these are the estimates made, not by the Opposion speakers only but some of the most eminent economists in South Africa, people who know what amount of money it costs to develop a particular area.
I have said on behalf of my friends sitting in these benches, that as far as rehabilitating the reserves is concerned we will give the hon. the Minister all possible assistance. We will not put one obstacle in his way. But where we profoundly differ from him is in thinking that you can rehabilitate and develop the reserves as a basis of the solution to our troubles in South Africa. You cannot do that. At best, the highest development possible in those particular areas, we would be very fortunate if we could afford a reasonable standard of living for the natural increases in those particular areas. And then you still sit with the crux of the problem. The crux of the problem is the urban Native.
Speaking in the Other Place the hon. the Minister said that 80 or 90 per cent of these people, throughout their entire lives, maintain contact with their homelands. He said it is absolute nonsense to say that these people are completely detribalized, that they have lost all contact with their homelands that they are no longer tribalized Natives but urbanized people. Mr. Chairman, I think that any reasonable man must admit that there are thousands upon thousands of Africans who have never seen any of the reserves. There are thousands upon thousands of these people who were born in the urban areas. And there are likewise thousands who will never see the reserves in their lifetimes. And the laws governing those people are made in this Parliament, and you will never receive satisfaction from those people or unless you accord them rights.
One man one vote.
Might I also mention this to the hon. the Minister: To me it is wishful thinking to believe that even in the reserve areas you can subject those people to this rule of Parliament without giving them representation here. I repeat, that to me is wishful thinking. And those are the points on which we expect the hon. the Minister to reply to us in this debate. We expect him to show us how, (a) he is going to get the South African nation to believe and to accept the premise of his policy, that he wants to get away from racial discrimination; and, (b) he has an equally difficult task to prove to our friends in the world that the policy of the Nationalist Party is not one of discrimination. Unless he can satisfy us on these points we will forever continue … [Interjections.]
I wish my hon. friend would keep quite for a moment. I know it is very difficult for him.
We will continue to put these points to the hon. the Minister. From these benches we will continue to show how impossible it is, on the premises of the Nationalist Party policy, to affect justice and fairness to the non-European in South Africa.
One man one vote.
Once again, it is also a prerequisite for developing the reserves that the undertaking given to the Bantu people in 1936 should be honoured by the European in South Africa. And that is also the basis of the estimates of the Tomlinson Commission, that in order to rehabilitate those areas and in order to give the African living in those areas a reasonable opportunity of achieving a fair standard of living, the land promised to them in 1936 should be bought. It is the policy of this party, we will support the hon. the Minister in acquiring that land. But, once again, here the Minister has lagged behind what is demanded of the times in which we are living, in implementing that. I should like to know from the hon. the Minister what he and his Department have done to overcome the opposition from the European farmers living on the borders of the reserves against selling their land? If those farmers are going to be recalcitrant and refuse in future to sell their land, what is he going to do in that connection.
Might I mention the fact that the Protectorates form an integral part in the entire anticipated development of the reserves. The hon. the Minister knows that the chances of us getting the Protectorates are now pretty dim. I would like to know from the hon. the Minister, has there been any reassessment to his plans on a basis of not incorporating the British Territories.
Before I sit down I should like to make this point to the hon. the Minister. The Minister went out of his way to take to task one of our hon. members for raising a particular point last night. The Minister said that that was an example of a small incident being attacked and played up into great prominence and that damages South Africa. Mr. Chairman, we will continue to show up the bad standards used by the hon. the Minister and his Department, should they continue on that basis to discriminate against any of our people.
I had not intended discussing this Vote, but I have been listening this morning to a few words from hon. members opposite and to the leader of the Progressive Party. If I had not known him since he was a child, and all his family. I would have said that he was somebody who does not live in South Africa and who has no interests here, somebody who never in the past knew anything about South Africa, and that one should doubt everything he says. The hon. member is an educated man; he is a good doctor; he comes from a good family and he is a good hon. member, but how he has deteriorated! He has deteriorated to such an extent that he disregards the interests of South Africa. The hon. member ought to know that what he said here to-day will be published to the outside world as the result of the new lines of communication we have which passes everything along by means of the grape-vine until it reaches our enemies. Every word said in this House or in South Africa—one hardly dares speak to one’s wife—soon reaches Khrushchev and the other communists. That is the position we have to-day.
Ever since this Government came into power it has made a great point of trying to solve the Native problem. I first just want to mention the word “Natives”. In Kenya you will see that all the legislation and correspondence still refers to Natives. General Smuts always told me: I call him by his name; I call him a Kaffir. But our Prime Minister and this Government say no. we must be more moderate and call these people Bantu. That is very good, because we do not want to hurt their feelings. But it never was the intention to hurt their feelings. I am not hurting their feelings either; I know the Natives. Just see what the Government has done for the urban Bantu. Houses and schools have been built for them. The hon. member for East London (City) (Dr. D. L. Smit) said that even when he was Secretary of Native Affairs he tried to remove the Bantu, but he was not successful under the old Government. Thank heaven, it is successful now! Then I told him that I was sincerely pleased—I have known him for many years; I have known him for 40 years—that he made that radical change and acknowledged that the Government had made a success of these large removals in Johannesburg and elsewhere and that the Government had cleared up the slums there by building splendid townships to which the Natives could go. The Government did that in spite of the opposition of the municipality and the local authorities. But the Government adhered to its course and continued, and the hon. member for East London (City) now says that is correct. He has been converted.
I never said anything of the kind.
He cannot shift his ground now. I know the hon. member and his whole background very well. He cannot deceive me—no one can, including the Prime Minister. I know what I am talking about. I very seldom speak, but this matter worried me.
The officials are doing wonderful work today and stand by the Government in order to solve this problem. Take the hon. member for Transkeian Territories (Mr. Hughes). He is one of the young men who practise there as an attorney and the Natives have a high regard for him. They go to him with all their troubles and his advice has a great influence on them. Now I ask whether he uses his advice to solve this problem, or not? What are the consequences of the speeches he makes here? He is a good man, but the course he follows is very close to that of the members of the Progressive Party, if he is not one of them. I do not know how he can separate them. I do not see much difference between them here.
I just want to say this still. I spent years in Kenya; I was in the Congo, and in Central Africa … [Interjections.] There everything was done 50-50. Take Rhodesia. There it was also 50-50, and what did they get for it? Take Banda. They say “We appreciate what you did for us, we appreciate that you took our sons to Oxford, Cambridge and Edinburgh to educate them. But they are now coming back. This is our country and you must get out”. That is the position, and it is also the position in Rhodesia. We see what happens there every day. Give them a finger and they take the whole hand. I know the Natives. I have been working with them for years and I speak their language, and the hon. member over there, my good friend, knows it.
He is no longer your friend.
Yes, he will remain my good friend. I hope to convert him because he is a good man. He is still a worthy son of South Africa, but he should watch in which direction he is going now and take care that he does not turn into a pillar of salt. I did not want to speak, but I did feel that I should tell the Opposition that they should be grateful for what has been done for the Coloureds, the Natives and others since this Government came into power. This Government does everything it can … [Interjections.] Does the hon. member then want to sit with folded hands and pursue a policy of laissez faire, and say that we must surrender? That is one thing he should not talk to me about, surrendering. I had the experience that people who surrendered during the Anglo-Boer War betrayed me … [Interjections.] That hon. member opposite says that we now do not want to do anything more, that the Minister did this, that and the other, and that it was all fruitless; it is hopeless, and now we must just sit still and surrender everything. We shall not do that. We want to preserve Western civilization in this Southern corner of Africa and we shall remain here. The great powers like America, which now sends its Williams and its Adlai Stevenson here, people who are not welcome in South America to-day, will later recognise that this little group of people who for 300 years have been spreading civilization in South Africa are the people whom they should support. Why? Because we want to treat the Coloured and the Native fairly, but we will remain what we are and do justice to everybody.
We have become used to the hon. member for Aliwal (Capt. G. H. F. Strydom) quoting the late General Smuts on every possible occasion. I do not know how he managed to stay out of General Smuts party for as long as he did. I suggest that he now writes his memoirs around the life of General Smuts and give us the advantages of the wisdom that was imparted to him from time to time. I will deal with the hon. member’s speech in the course of my remarks to the hon. the Minister, because I wish first to deal with the speech made by the hon. the Minister before the luncheon adjournment.
The hon. the Minister commenced his reply to me this morning by taking the same line as that taken by the hon. member for Aliwal, by deprecating all criticism against his party. He commenced by expressing his appreciation of the fact that I had acknowledged that the Government had done some creditable things. He said that he liked objective criticism. Of course, unless one praises the Government today, the criticism is not welcomed.
It is not constructive.
And it is not constructive. It is true that I conceded last night that the Government had spent much money on urban housing in the European areas, on slum clearance, on Bantu education, on the rehabilitation of the Reserves and other matters. But, talking about money spent on housing in the European areas, might I say in parenthesis that this is a contradication of the Government’s policy that the urban Native is only a temporary sojourner in the urban areas. The United Party is always prepared to give credit where credit is due, and is always objective in its criticism. That was our attitude last night before the vote under discussion came before the Committee. You will remember, Mr. Chairman, that we complimented the hon. the Deputy Minister of Social Welfare and Pensions for having introduced the War Pensions Bill. The impression that we only make adverse or hostile criticism is created by the fact that over the last 13 years we so seldom have had an opportunity of congratulating this Government on any constructive steps they have taken.
When I conceded last night that the Government had taken some steps to emeliorate the lot of the Africans, I went on to point out, however, that despite the credit side there was undoubted dissatisfaction and hostility amongst the Bantu. The reason for this is easy to find. The reason is the negative and repressive Acts appearing on the debit side of the Government’s record. I want to give some examples. I recently criticized the hon. the Minister for allowing the Emergency Regulations to continue to apply in the Transkei although we were told that the disturbances there were at an end. One of the criticisms I had to make was against the Indemnity Clause. I now want to read this Indemnity Clause to the Committee. It says—
Any acts committed by them or authorized by them are indemnified against action by the subject aggrieved. And the Government is also indemnified. I said that this was a harsh thing to do, that it was a wicked provision. And then this morning we heard the hon. the Minister of Justice say this—
If ever there was a damnation of an act of this Minister, it is in the words of the hon. the Minister of Justice. I again make an appeal to this hon. Minister to repeal this proclamation. That is only one example. I will give some other examples.
There is, Mr. Chairman, the denial of home ownership to urban Africans; the right of workers to have their families live with them: job reservation; denial of the right to attend open universities—and so I could go on and on All these are things which count. All these things are on the debit side of this Government. These are all things which affect the human rights of the people which are ignored by this Government.
It would appear that the main complaint amongst the dissatisfied Bantu in this country is that they are not allowed a voice in the councils of the nation at all. They are not allowed to express themselves. They are not allowed to raise their objections except through certain people recognized by the Government, the traditional chiefs and headmen. I admit that this is not a complaint peculiar to South Africa, but it is one bone of contention which is common throughout the African Continent, the demand by the Africans for further political rights. I will admit this, that the political power is not only exercised through the ballot-box; it can also be exercised to greater effect through economic pressure. But in meeting this challenge we in South Africa have an advantage over the other African territories in that we are better developed agriculturally and industrially, are richer in natural resources and can expand further and offer our Africans better material advantages than most of the other countries of the continent. For that reason we attract Africans from far afield to our country, because we are in a position to keep on raising our standards of living, and where standards of living rise there is usually no incentive to revolt or cause for serious discontent. But it cannot be denied that the main cause for complaint in this country, which is reflected in all the laws passed by this Government, is the attitude towards the citizenship rights of the African. We cannot close our eyes to the fact that the Bantu is just as much a South African as the White man, but the Government chooses to pretend that he is a foreigner in the socalled White areas and that he can be expelled to the reserves, where he will be treated as a foreign subject and where he will enjoy the only political rights offered to the Bantu.
Now, what are these political rights? Outside the Transkei they are governed by Bantu authorities where they have no electoral rights at all. The headmen and chiefs form the vairous councils. In the Transkei outside of Pondoland they are allowed to elect the minority of the members of the Council. Those are the political rights offered to the Bantu throughout the country, and to be able to enjoy those rights they must go and live in the reserves. The Minister knows that they will not be allowed to go and live in the reserves. They will not be admitted to the Transkei, even though they want to go there, because they have no kraal sites there. Now the Government justifies its attitude towards the Bantu in the urban areas by saying that they must go to the Transkei or the other reserves and enjoy their political rights there and they will be allowed to develop there to the fullest extent and they can become independent states. One of the Minister’s criticisms of my speech this morning was because I said that confusion had been created because of the conflicting statements made by officials and the Minister. I want to point out to the Minister that the confusion arises because the Press is reporting the speeches which are made. The very speech the Minister made this morning will cause confusion. I asked him last night when I attacked him on his attitude of promising the Transkei independence and self-government within a few years—I said it was foolish and a criminal thing to do because they could not exist as an independent state in a few years’ time. This morning the Minister said he stood by everything he said then; he stood by the statement he gave to the Cape Times, and he went on to say that we must not confuse self-government with independence, and he rather indicated what the Government intended to do to give them self-government but not independence. That was the line the Commissioner-General took in Umtata, that they will get self-government but not independence. [Time limit.]
Mr. Chairman, I think the ears of that good old friend of all of us in the Transkei, the former member for Groblersdal, Mr. Abraham, must be tingling to-day as they have never tingled before on account of the way he was praised to-day by the hon. member for Transkeian Territories (Mr. Hughes), the same hon. member whose mouth is still awry from the disgusting insults uttered by him last year and still this year.
Order! The Deputy Minister must withdraw the word “disgusting”.
I withdraw it. I am not going to react to everything that was said by the hon. member for Transkeian Territories, but I just want to deal with one or two points in the limited time at my disposal. The hon. member said that the provision of housing by the Government on a large scale in the White areas for the Bantu is in conflict with our policy and our statement that the Bantu are in the White areas temporarily. I think that is a very scandalous statement to make. Are we to infer from that that the Bantu who are temporarily employed in the White areas should not be properly housed, according to the hon. member? [Interjections.] The hon. member said that the provision of good housing was in conflict with our own conception that the Bantu are in the White areas temporarily, and I say that is a scandalous implication to make, and I go further. The hon. member said a few moments ago that certain speeches, inter alia those of the Minister, are harmful to us overseas. But I say that statement such as the one he has just made, intimating that we should allow the Bantu to live in hovels in the White areas, is more harmful than anything else. We know what was done about the Bantu in the White areas during the regime of the United Party. Then the Bantu were allowed to live in hovels on a large scale and they had to live in the White areas under the most scandalous conditions. We cleared up that position, and the basis on which we did it, the housing we provided, shows that it is based on the honest conception that generally speaking their residence here is temporary. The Bantu are here temporarily, and that is why we house them in this way, and we tell them that they are here temporarily and everybody knows they are here temporarily, and we also tell them where they belong permanently, namely in their homelands, which we should already have developed at a much earlier stage in our history but which, due to circumstances, were not developed and which development we must now tackle with all our energies so that their permanent homelands can be provided for them with full possibilities for development. There is nothing dishonest or wrong in saying that they are here temporarily, but while they are here they should be properly housed.
The hon. member for Queenstown (Dr. Steytler) made a very weak attempt to play people off against each other. He tried to play the Minister and myself and the Ambassador in London off against each other. [Interjection.] It is not ridiculous. The hon. member is ridiculous. If I want to play three people off against each other, I would at least quote something which was said by all three, but he quoted from the speeches of only one of those three people. The hon. member has a very faulty understanding of what we said. There is no conflict between what was said about the development of the Bantu areas by the Minister or any other responsible person. The hon. member for Queenstown had much to say about the so-called discrimination. He tried to ridicule the policy we are applying by suggesting that we are gradually developing in the direction of increasingly less discrimination between the Whites and the Bantu to the extent that our policy is increasingly being applied. The hon. member pretends that they do not discriminate, but what is the actual position in regard to the Progressive Party? Their policy is a sham, not only in my eyes but in the eyes of the Bantu themselves. The Bantu themselves have told the hon. member for Maitland (Dr. de Beer) at his meeting, in a practical way by walking out, that they are discriminating, because the hon. member for Maitland said in Durban that he and his party do not believe that the principle of one man, one vote should be applied. If they do not believe it, it is because it amounts to discrimination, and because the Bantu interpret it as being discrimination they walked out of that meeting, and it was a quite correct inference for the Bantu to draw. [Interjections.] The hon. member for Queenstown is just a short step ahead of the United Party. They are both on the same road. The one is just in top gear and the other in second gear. The one is on top of the hill and the other halfway up the hill. The hon. member for Queenstown also spoke here about the development of the reserves and said that it was no solution, according to our policy, to make the Bantu live permanently there and to employ those who are in the White areas temporarily here. If it is true that the hon. member and his party do not regard the development of the Bantu homelands as a permanent home for the Bantu, he should be honest enough to say that they will reject the idea of Bantu homelands. Then I must say: We will no longer honour the borders of the reserves; there will be only one South Africa in which the White man and the Bantu will both have equal rights. If the Bantu homelands do not afford the Bantu a place in which to live, then the hon. member must reject the Bantu homelands as a separate home for the Bantu, otherwise it is dishonest. I say that in this respect they are just as insincere as they are in regard to one man, one vote. The fortunate part of it is that the Bantu are clever enough and honest enough to recognize their insincerity, and that is why they walk out of their meetings. [Time limit.]
I wish to address a very strong appeal to the hon. the Minister to start his era of administration in the Republic by making a gesture which is long overdue and one which would do South Africa an enormous amount of good, not only overseas but also as far as we in this country are concerned. I ask the Minister to take steps to abolish the system of banishments. This system of banishments is one of the most cruel instruments of administration that can be found anywhere. I believe that the Minister, if he thinks about this system at all and the way in which it is being applied, will agree that it is a cruel system which should not be followed by any civilized country. I do not want the Minister to tell me that this system of banishments was started in 1927. I know that. It was wrong to start it then and there were protests at the time. The late Denys Reitz, in a protest in this House, said it was a denial of habeus corpus, and other hon. members at the time complained bitterly about this system. So in principle it was even wrong then. However, the point is that the system of banishments, which I believe was intended then to be used very sparingly, has now developed into something which is approaching a scandal, and I urge that the Minister should abolish it.
As far as one can make out, there have been since 1948 something like 110 people sent into banishment, of which about 50 are still in exile. Seven, as far as can be determined, have fled to other countries; 37 have been released; seven have died while in exile, and some nine are missing and cannot be traced. It is extremely difficult to obtain any reliable information about these people. The Minister is most reticent in giving information. Even through questions in the House it is difficult to get a full picture of the position. The House must realize that this system applies only to political offences. It does not apply to ordinary criminal offences at all, because for ordinary criminal offences the courts are there to deal with the people concerned. The system is entirely arbitrary. The Minister, under the powers he has, has sole discretion to decide whether or not he wishes to exile a person. The only reason he has to give is that in his opinion the presence of that individual, or of portion of the tribe which has to be banished, is detrimental to the wellbeing of the people in that area. There need be no warning whatever. The punishment can fall suddenly. The man is just suddenly taken and banished. He can ask for the reason why he is banished, through the Native Commissioner in the area where he goes to, and nearly always the reply is stereotyped and simply this: “Your presence in the area concerned is considered inimical to the peace, order and good government of the area where you have been residing”. It is true, also, that they can appeal to the courts. But they can only appeal to the courts from their place of exile and it is extremely difficult to do that. It is difficult to obtain money and to conduct your case from that place. The law is such that an appeal is virtually impossible. There have been one or two appeals which succeeded, but almost immediately the law was altered and the man was back in his former position. So the right to appeal does not assist much for all practical purposes.
Now, what exactly does this involve? It means that somebody in nine cases out of ten has agitated against some act by the Government and in the opinion of the Minister he is an agitator. He may not like the decision to extend passes to African women, or he may not like the Bantu Authorities Act or the chiefs appointed by the Minister. He agitates against them and he is then liable to sudden deportation. Surely the right to agitate, if people dislike a thing, is a fundamental right? Every hon. member opposite is an agitator and he is sitting there simply because he is an agitator. He has agitated for certain things that he either wants or does not want. Therefore surely people must not be stopped from agitating. But most of these cases are for political offences. They are sent into exile, and what does that involve?
It involves being sent to a remote point far away from the area in which the person lives. A man from the Transkei may be sent to a place in the Kalahari. They are not kept behind barbed wire or in prison, but it amounts to more or less the same thing. It is a form of exile. They are given £2 a month which can be raised to £4 a month in some cases, and they are given £2 when they are taken away. Most of them are in a state of poverty. If they work they can earn a little but not much more. Most of them are separated from their families. It is true they are allowed to have their families there, but you cannot expect a family from, e.g., the fertile Natal to go and dump itself in the Kalahari. There are many cases where the family has been reduced to a state of poverty. There is one case where a man has been exiled for ten years to these remote places and he has very little chance of getting back again. It is comparable to the position in Siberia, banishment into exile. I do plead that the amount of assistance the system gives to the Minister is not worth the odium of the whole system. On humanitarian and Christian grounds, this system should be abolished. It is cruel and inhuman, and I think the Minister should inaugurate the Republican era by the humanitarian act of abolishing this system and telling the world at large that he does not require this type of instrument in order to govern. Let him dispense with this system, which brings no credit to the Government or to South Africa. I appeal to the Minister for the good of the country to do away with it.
The hon. member for Parktown (Mr. Cope) has told us about a system which he calls a system of banishment, but he is using the word “banish” in a strange manner. Most of the people who are dealt with under this system are people who have caused trouble in certain places where they have been permitted to live and to work, and then they are sent back to their homes. [Interjections.] There was the case of the Bantu woman in Paarl who was sent back to Bechuanaland, whence she had come, but she fled to Basutoland. She banished herself, and not the Government. Banishment means to take a man out of his country and to send him to another country. That is not what happened to Luthuli. He was sent back to his own territory. He caused trouble in the area where he was permited to live, and he was sent back to his own country. The hon. member for Parktown calls it cruel and barbarous and scandalous, and something that should not happen in a modern country, but one did not hear the hon. member say a word when the British Government, not 100 years ago but very recently, took Seretse Khama out of his own country and kept him in England.
And what about Makarios?
I am coming to that. They took Seretse Khama out of Bechuanaland and took him to England as an exile, and the hon. member for Parktown said nothing against that. And what sin did he commit? He married a European woman, and so the British Government banished him from his own country and the hon. member for Parktown has never said a word about that. [Interjections.] Yes, he is now back again, after serving his period of exile.
I should like to mention another instance of someone who also did not commit any crime, and who was only a political agitator also, Bishop Makarios. The British Government took him away from his own country, and banished him to another island, and the hon. member for Salt River (Mr. Lawrence) never had a word to say about that, still less the hon. member for Parktown. He never said it was cruel or barbarous or scandalous. But now they complain about the action taken by the Government in this country where they are sending people who are causing trouble in the places where they are permitted to live and work, back to the places whence they came. Then they call it banishment. Why did they not talk about the banishment of Seretse Khama and Makarios? There was the case of an ecclesiastic who was banished from his country. [Interjections.] Sir, I can hear that hon. members have no arguments, but simply make interjections and a row. I should like to say, with reference to what the hon. member for the Transkeian Territories (Mr. Hughes) said, that we are acting contrary to our own policy, that we are not giving the Bantu areas independence but self-government The hon. member surely knows that independence usually comes as an historical development. The Cape received self-government from the British Government during last century, not independence. It remained a dependent colony of Britain, but it received self-government. The Transvaal and Free State which were conquered, in 1905 received self-government from the British Government, but remained colonies under the supremacy of Britain. It was only partly in 1926 with the Balfour Convention and to a greater extent in 1930 that the Union became an independent country, and its independence became complete now in the Republic. Now he wants us to give countries that have not even been partly developed their independence, and we must not start with self-government. He wants to reverse history. I suppose he wants us to give them independence first and then later on lead them back to self-government. Surely that is putting the cart before the horse.
But I should like to say a few words to the hon. member for Queenstown (Dr. Steytler). When I told him, during his speech, that his premises were wrong, he turned to me. with some annoyance and said I should make my own speech. I am now making my own speech, and I want to show him where his premises are altogether wrong. He says you cannot compare the case of the Italian working in Germany or France with the Native from the reserves who comes to work in the White areas at all. His premise is altogether wrong.
His premise is wrong because he regards the Bantu as a citizen of the Republic.
Don’t you regard him as such?
I do not regard the Bantu as a citizen of the Republic …
Let me now ask the hon. member for Queenstown (Dr. Steytler) please to sit and listen patiently until I have completed my speech and then he will understand what I am saying. He should not distort my words now already. He will have sufficient opportunities to distort them outside later. I said I do not regard the Bantu as a citizen of the Republic in the same sense in which the White man is a citizen of the Republic. That is my proposition.
What is the difference?
The difference is that there are Bantu areas and in the Bantu areas he receives and will be receiving to a greater extent his own civic rights.
May I ask the hon. member a question?
No. When I wished to ask the hon. member something, he was annoyed. The position of the Bantu from the Bantu areas coming to work in White South Africa is much more comparable to that of the Mexicans who leave Mexico to go and work in the United States. [Interjections.] No, the Bantu areas are not one of the provinces of the Republic of South Africa either. They are Bantu areas that are being developed for the Bantu, and that is where the Bantu will be receiving their rights; that is the whole difference.
No. Please be quiet now. Please be decent for once. I wished to ask him a question and after the hon. member became annoyed, I kept quiet, but now he is sitting there making constant interjections.
(Mr. Pelser) Order! Will the hon. member for Queenstown please give the hon. member an opportunity to make his speech.
The hon. member’s view of what the object of the development of the Bantu areas is, is onesided and slanted. For instance, he says the Bantu areas, once they are properly developed, will only provide for the normal increase of the population of those areas. That is wrong. It amounts to the old misrepresentation that those Bantu areas are so small and so poor that they are incapable of carrying a larger Bantu population. They forget to tell the world that the Bantu areas for the greater part consist of some of the best agricultural areas in South Africa. They are enormous areas. When you compare them with European areas, then they are as big as areas in Europe which together carry a population of 90,000,000 or more. I should like to mention a single instance. The hon. member for Queenstown is close enough to it. I frequently travel from Alice to Keiskamahoek in my constituency, and then I travel through that beautiful Keiskama Valley where there are a few European farms. For the rest it is Bantu area. I have frequently asked people there who know that part of the country: Look, if this valley were to be developed properly, what ought it to produce? And without exception they have told me: “The Government has had an agricultural college for the Bantu there for many years now, and we are training the Bantu there, and when you look for him again, you find he is working in Johannesburg. [Time limit.]
I must say that we are all amazed to hear the speech this afternoon from the hon. member for Fort Beaufort (Dr. Jonker). I am sure that the Minister of Bantu Administration and Development is going to have some difficulty in defending what his colleague has just said. The hon. member has now said that the African is not regarded as a citizen of South Africa because his country is the reserves.
I said not in the same sense as the White man.
Yes. I am coming to that. Not in the same sense as the White man, he said. I ask him to indicate to me where the Citizenship Act, which was introduced by this Government, differentiates between an African and a White man? His own Government is responsible for the South African Citizenship Act. Where does it differentiate between an African and a White man as far as citizenship is concerned? This idea of the African having to go back to the reserves, that that is his homeland and that that is where he will enjoy all his political rights, only originated 13 years ago when this Government took over. Up till then the Africans were regarded as South Africans who lived where they liked in the country; they were not told to get back to there reserves. The reserves were regarded as the homelands of the Africans …
What about the Acts of 1936?
What about the Citizenship Act of 1949?
When I say that they could live where they liked there was admittedly influx control but there was no provision that certain parts of South Africa were not to be Native occupation at all.
He was looked upon as a South African.
There was no idea before 1948 that South Africa would be divided into pure Black States and pure White States. There was no such idea until this Government took over in 1948. The hon. member for Fort Beaufort says that the reserves are the richest part of the country, that the Bantu are being given the best land.
And you know that that is so.
No matter how rich it is. the Tomlinson Commission, a body of experts appointed by this Government to go into this question of separate development in Bantustan, found that no matter how rich they are and no matter what development takes place there, all the Bantu can never live in the reserves. Is this Government now laying down the principle that certain Africans are going to become stateless because they cannot live in the reserves; they have to live here and they can never be granted citizenship rights? There is a rumour that the hon. member for Fort Beaufort is to become chairman of the Native Affairs Commission in place of the member for Port Elizabeth (North) (Mr. J. A. F. Nel). The hon. member for Heilbron (Mr. Froneman) is upset, because he thinks he is going to get the job, but even this Government would not be as mad as that. The hon. member for Fort Beaufort, in replying to the hon. member for Parktown (Mr. Cope) said that the Bantu who were banished were only banished to their homelands. Sir, what nonsense is he talking? If he wants to make any progress in the Native Affairs Department of this Government he must study the laws and find out what is happening before making such a statement. I ask him what happened to Jackson Nkosiana who was banished from the Transkei. The hon. the Minister can tell him. The Minister is blushing now at the ignorance of his own members. He shakes his head; he is not blushing, he expected it. Sir, the Deputy Minister also surprised me. He got up and said, because I remarked on the fact that the building of big urban Native cities round the European cities and the spending of a lot of money by the Government on the building of houses there, were in conflict with their policy of sending all the Natives back to the reserves, that I and the United Party wanted the Natives to live in hovels; that we were against the spending of this money on the Bantu. Sir, it is not true. We encouraged the Government to build better housing because it is our policy that those people will live there; we recognize the fact that they are permanently urbanized and we say that the Government must not only build houses for them but allow them to buy ground and build their own houses, which would save the Government some expense …
Did your Government do it?
I admit again, as I did last night, that when the Government took over there were slums, but the hon. member for Mossel Bay (Dr. van Nierop) knows that the influx of Natives into the urban areas which brought about the slums took place during the war years and that the influx was due to the phenomenal industrial growth which took place during those years, and it is because of the development which took place in those years that this Government has been able to carry on in spite of its own blunders ….
You are talking nonsense.
To get back to the Minister, he said that the Leader of the Opposition had now acknowledged the wisdom of separate Bantu states because he had accepted that policy in (his federation scheme. I would remind the Minister that it has been United Party policy that the Bantu will have their own homeland and when the Leader of the Opposition talks about a federation, he has made it quite clear that he means a federation of the races, and he has said that the reserves will be able to develop a certain amount of autonomy, in the same way as the provincial councils have done. That is nothing new; the Minister should know that it was Gen. Smuts’ policy to give the Natives more and more power to control their own affairs in the reserves. But that is different from saying that they can become independent states. We do not stand for the fragmentation of the Republic; we want to keep it intact. That is quite different from the Government’s policy. In dealing with the land question, I asked the Minister to tell us where he intended buying more land. There is some more money set aside in the Supplementary Estimates for the purchase of land, and I again ask him where he is going to buy more land. It is his duty to tell us exactly where because it has become of importance now that he has promised the Bantustans that they are going to become independent territories. It is quite a different matter buying land from neighbouring farmers who may have offered their land when they thought it was going to remain part of their country. The neighbours of those people who are selling land want to know what their position will be. The Minister has said that it is only irresponsible Bantu who asked for an extension of the boundaries of the reserves. He mentioned that at the Transkeian Territorial Authority there was even a claim for some land in the Cape proper. It was not an irresponsible person either; it was one of the chiefs who moved that the boundaries of the Transkei should go down to the Fish River and that all that area should be brought under the control of the Territorial Authority. But it is not only a Bantu chief who has asked for that. A Nationalist, Mr. Kruger, who stood as a candidate for African representation here in Parliament, issued a pamphlet from Queenstown in which he said that it was the Nationalist Party’s policy to give all this land to the Africans. He included East London and the area right up to the Natal border.
That is nonsense.
Mr. Kruger said that when he stood as a candidate and that hon. member knows nothing about it. The Minister said that the chiefs rejected the resolution asking for independence or self-government in the Transkeian Territorial Council because they were responsible; that they did not want it now, that they wanted to develop it slowly. I will tell the Minister why they rejected it. When it was first moved by one of the members of the Territorial Authority it was received with acclaim by all the delegates and it was only afterwards, when the officials got busy and when they were warned by the chairman that if they did get independence and did have democratic elections to elect the leaders of the people the chiefs will probably find themselves swept away. [Time limit.]
The previous speaker has now made the point, in reply to the Deputy Minister, that they are encouraging the Government to build houses for the Bantu in White residential areas. They are in favour of that, and they have also encouraged the Government to do so, but at the same time he admitted that they, when they were in power, had done nothing in connection with that matter. He admitted that under their regime slum areas developed. I am pleased that he is now giving the Government this encouragement to carry on with that policy, but then I should like to appeal to them not to make propaganda with that policy when they go to the country districts—this same policy under which the Government is giving proper housing to the Natives where they are here in the White areas—by saying that the Government is looking after the Bantu only and is neglecting the White man. Because they, themselves, do not have a policy, they are making propaganda at every election with this housing policy in order to incite the White people against the Government, for the very reason that the Government is making this splendid effort. But every time the Bantu policy of the National Party is discussed, we find the same charge time and again that the policy of apartheid is not practicable, that it is not honest, and that it is only a smokescreen which is thrown up for the Bantu, and that it will not be capable of being carried out fully. We have heard it repeatedly during this debate again. What exactly is behind these charges? Why is the policy of apartheid continually subjected to attack? Why is this opposition persisted with, not only in the House of Assembly, but also outside, in spite of the constant judgments of the nation? At first they said that this policy of apartheid is only an election slogan, that it is only an ideology, that it is just dust thrown into the eyes of the electorate, and that the Government is not in earnest at all with the carrying out of this policy. Now that positive steps are being taken, now that the policy of apartheid actually is beginning to come to fruition, now that we are able to begin to pick the fruits of the policy, now that we are beginning to see the results, now they come along with a different story. Now they are firstly trying to make the policy of apartheid suspect in the eyes of the Bantu. They are trying to make the policy of apartheid suspect in the outside world. Not only they, but also a large section of their Press, are continually attacking this policy of apartheid in the amended form, because it is now becoming clear to them that this policy of apartheid is practicable indeed, and that it is definitely going to be a success. Now the implementation of the policy has to be prevented at all costs. Why must the relations between White and non-White be disturbed in this manner? Why, here in South Africa of all places, where the Bantu have achieved a much higher standard of living under the guardianship of the White man than the Natives in any of the independent Bantu states in the rest of the continent of Africa? Why is that propaganda made here of all places where the Bantu is gradually being advanced to a higher standard of living in comparison with the Natives in the independent states of Africa, where there is only a body of leaders who keep everything in their own hands and continue a dictatorship, and where the rest of the population are left in poverty and misery and ignorance and illiteracy? Why here of all places, where all these endeavours are made to uplift the Bantu, not only to give him good housing, but to improve his entire socio-economic position? Why is that propaganda made here of all places, where the Bantu in South Africa alone probably have 100,000 motor vehicles of their own? That is one bit of proof that they have already achieved a high standard of living. They are seeking in this an attempt to break the National Party. That is the background. They see in the Black man of South Africa the potential source of power that could be used politically against the White man here in this country. The liberalists are also using people who are not liberal in their ideas; they are using people who, in their hatred of the National Party, the national regime, the national idea, are bound together. Those people are used by the liberalists in this country to do everything in their power to bring the National Party to a fall, even at the cost of South Africa. It does not matter how much damage South Africa is going to suffer through that, as long as they can succeed in breaking the Government. That is the object of this communistically orientated organization that wishes to create chaos among the masses and to incite the masses, and wants thereby to win sympathy for their own cause overseas once chaos has been created here—all these things at the cost of South Africa, but that does not count as far as they are concerned. I think a very good example is this multi-racial convention that was proposed just before the Republic came into being. What were the demands they made? The leader of that convention, Nelson Mandela, said that they are demanding that a national convention representative of all races, men and women, on a basis of equality, regardless of race, colour or creed, be convened by the Union Government not later than 31 May 1961, and that this convention should have sovereign powers to draft a new democratic constitution for South Africa in any way decided upon by the majority of the representatives. All these suspect multi-racial organizations that came into existence in this country during the last few years participated in this attempt of Nelson Mandela and his colleagues. They also received the support of a whole lot of lecturers from two of the White universities in the country. They also enjoyed the support of the Progressive Party. But one could expect that from all these bodies; it is not strange, but what was strange to me was that they also enjoyed the support of a frontbencher of the United Party, the official Opposition in this country. And what did the hon. member for Wynberg (Mr. Russell) say about this multiracial convention? At a meeting in Claremont he said this—
These are the words of a frontbencher of the United Party—
Send him to Natal.
I shall not spend much time dealing with the previous speaker’s remarks. He apparently set out to deal with the critics of apartheid on the basis that it was impracticable. He tried to prove that it was practicable by saying that motor cars and a slightly higher standard of living were available to the Bantu. Of course, that does not prove his point at all. The rest of his speech I am not going to deal with because I do not think it is worth dealing with.
I want to come back to a point made by the hon. the Minister in part of his reply this morning, and that is his praise for the hon. the Prime Minister for what he has done in the way of improving the lot of the Natives in South Africa. I want to deal with one particular aspect and one particular thing which the Minister seems to have inherited from the hon. the Prime Minister when he occupied the portfolio now occupied by the hon. Minister of Bantu Administration and Development. I refer to the question of Native housing. I want to speak about the position particularly as it applies in Durban, because there I can give him facts. Whether it applies in other parts of the country or not, I do not know, but I think this is a problem of its own which warrants special attention. The thing which I think he inherited from the Prime Minister is a peculiar type of sanction or veto which he seems to have introduced into the negotiations for Native housing. The Minister will remember that Durban wanted to proceed first of all with a township at Umlazi; that because the hon. the Prime Minister wanted it to go elsewhere they could not get permission for it, and as a matter of interest it held up the scheme which is now being started for some ten or 12 years. But now we come to Kwa Mashu, which was established first as a result of this peculiar type of sanction which the hon. the Prime Minister used then. He said: If you don’t built the northern township first, I won’t let you build the southern one. But now the thing seems to have gone further and I think it is holding up the provision of housing. We have a system now where the townships are being developed in so-called neighbourhood units, and quite a number have been built—I think in all some 2.500 houses if I am not mistaken—but as each one is built in a unit, permission has to be obtained before the next unit can be proceeded with. We have come to a situation now where apparently the Housing Board or the Minister —I don’t know which—has laid down that unit No. 8 has to be done by private tender. Surely the Minister knows by now whether the local authorities which have done the work up to the present moment, have produced a good article at a good price and whether it is worth continuing on the present system. Instead of that—whether it is because of a clash of personalities or some other factor I do not know—a state of deadlock seems to have been reached where the board says: “Unless you give this out to private contract you cannot proceed with further units.” That is not going to do anybody any good. If he analyses the situation I think the hon. the Minister will find that the two articles, the one being built by the local authority and the one given out to tender, are two totally different articles. One, for example, is a concrete house. Nobody in Durban wants to live in a concrete house in that humidity. The article which is being built and has been built up to now is a brick house, to a very good specification, and if the Minister’s Department of Native Housing would compare with the price for the two articles I am sure they would come to the conclusion that the article at present being built is a far better proposition although the cost might be slightly higher, so I would seriously commend to the hon. the Minister to investigate that and I would like some information from him on this subject, because this question of providing housing, although it has proceeded reasonably well, could have been speeded up considerably had all these little nonsensical stupid little things not cropped up from time to time. They have not done anybody any good and they have just held up the programme. My next worry is this: We are embarking now at long last upon the building of the Umlazi Native Township. This is a township in which we are particularly interested, because, as you know, it should have been built a considerable time ago, and if it had not been for the policy of the present Prime Minister, I am sure it would have been well under way. This is a township where because the land is owned by the Native Trust, the Natives can have ownership of their own properties. A very good thing too! For these reasons and because we believe it is so essential. I do not want to start off on the wrong foot. When once it is started, I want it to go as fast as possible, and I do not want all the bickering to take place all over again that we have had about the Native township at Kwa Mashu. I want an assurance from the hon. the Minister to-day that once it is put under way, we are not going to have all these petty difficulties, and that we are going to be allowed to get on with the job. The hon. Deputy Minister may frown at me, but I know what I am talking about when I talk of petty difficulties. What I am trying to do at the moment is to try and get these stupid things smoothed out of the way so that we can get on with the job. Durban has a Cato Manor. Lots of other places have Cato Manors. And if we don’t speed up the process in supplying these houses and if we don’t remove this bickering, what will the result be? You think at the moment that you are removing Cato Manor. You are not removing Cato Manor, you are breaking it down, but you are just transferring it to other places, when new housing is not available. I can take the hon. the Minister and the Deputy Minister—and my leader in Natal will verify this—to a place at Isipingo which is going to be ten times worse than Cato Manor, and at a rate faster than you are breaking Cato Manor down. That is my concern. While these things are happening, stupid arguments are taking place about providing the housing and the conditions under which these people can be transferred so that they can live happily without having new Cato Manors created. It is all very well to break down tin shanties and chase out the shebeen queens and then to think that you have got rid of them. It is not as simple as that at all. Unless the hon. the Minister is going to take a very positive approach here and stop all these petty hindrances in the providing of the housing which is so essential to solve these problems, we will never get the job done in time. I want particularly to see that now we are starting the new Umlazi Township, which is going to house Natives on a different basis in an area where the housing is most needed for them, that we are not going to run into all these snags which are so unnecessary, and I would be very pleased if the hon. the Minister could give me the assurance that we are not going to run into them.
One is pleased to see that there are no objections to the expenditure under this Vote. The only member who referred to the expenditure was the proposer of the amendment seeking to reduce this expenditure. No, let us not complain about the expenditure under this Vote. This is the price we have to pay for peaceful co-existence in South Africa between White and non-White. That is the price we have to pay for peace in South Africa. That is the price we have to pay for the practical implementation of our policy of apartheid, and however appalling this price may be, it will be a small price in comparison with the price we shall have to pay for the alternative of apartheid, namely integration, because the price we shall have to pay for integration will be nothing less than the surrender of South Africa to Black nationalism. That is why we say: Rather ten, rather 12 Bantu home countries (or what the Opposition sneeringly refer to as “Bantustans rather 20 of them than one Rondostan. Mr. Chairman, there is no alternative to apartheid except chaos. Now the United Party continually criticizes apartheid and they reject apartheid, but their criticism is really contradictory. When they address the outside world, they come along with one kind of criticism, and then they say, like the outside world, that the policy of apartheid is a policy of oppression and discrimination. But the next day, when they address the electorate of South Africa, and particularly shortly before an election, they speak differently and say that the policy of apartheid is a policy of appeasement of the Natives, that seeks to cut up South Africa and give it to the Black man. I think the time has arrived for the United Party now to make up its mind about the matter. Is the policy of apartheid a policy of oppression and discrimination, or is it a policy of appeasement of the Native that seeks to surrender South Africa to the Black man. It cannot be both.
It is a policy of disintegration.
If the hon. member says it is a policy of appeasement of the Natives, the sooner he says that to UN the sooner the crisis in South Africa will also be past. The United Party is very voluble in its criticism. But what is their own alternative? What are they offering when they criticize here? The solution offered by the United Party is only a vague proposition, a slogan and nothing more: “White leadership with justice”. They have never yet devised a positive policy as the National Party have done. The United Party rejects apartheid. They accept South Africa as the common fatherland for White and non-White. So they accept a single united multi-racial state, but they do not accept the logical implications of their policy. They do not accept that in such a united multi-racial state the Black man will not be satisfied to live for ever without the franchise, but that he will eventually extort it through a process of evolution or negotiation on the one hand or by means of violence or revolution on the other hand. If the United Party believes that with this cry of their’s of “White leadership with justice”, they will be able to withhold the vote from the Bantu in such a united multi-racial state, then surely they are discriminating against the Bantu. If the United Party intend to withhold the vote from the non-Whites, then surely it is discrimination. If they do not grant them an opportunity to develop their political aspiration, where is justice then? If on the other hand they intend to grant the non-White, the Black man, the franchise voluntarily, what then remains of their so-called White leadership? Surely they are then deceiving the White man? Now we do not know whom the United Party wants to deceive, whether they want to deceive the Whites or whether they want to deceive the non-Whites, with this cry of their’s of “White leadership with justice”, or whether they are only deceiving themselves because they have not themselves realized the implications of their own policy. However, one thing is certain, and very certain, and that is that in a united multiracial state White leadership with justice is nothing but a chimera and an illusion, for the acceptance of such a united multi-racial state can eventually lead to only one thing: political equality between White and Black, in which the Black majority eventually must govern.
As regards the Progressive Party, like the United Party, they also accept a united multiracial state for White and non-White, but they are only more honest than the United Party. They say unequivocally that they are aiming at integration and equality. They say the franchise should be given to all civilized people regardless of their colour. They say it should be given on the basis of merit, and all they are struggling with at the moment is to find a formula. They will plod along for a very long time to find a formula for what civilization really is. The point is this, that the policy of the United Party and that of the Progressive Party as surely as night follows day will result in domination by the Black man in South Africa. We feel the time has arrived for us to see these things honestly, and to discuss the matter honestly and unequivocally. To have a clear understanding of our problem, there must be clarity and we should see things as they are, and the very first thing we have to face up to is that in our attempt to preserve South Africa for ourselves and posterity, we must not expect assistance from outside. We Europeans in South Africa are standing alone before a common threat, the threat of Black nationalism. To realize that we are standing alone is to realize that we have to stand together and strive together to solve our problems, and as we know now that we cannot rely on the support of the Western powers, our friends, we must do all in our power to win the goodwill of the Black man within our own territory, and that is what our Minister and our Government are engaged on every day, to try to win that goodwill. [Time limit.]
The previous speaker, as well as the hon. the Minister, stakes the whole future of this country on a vision, a vision sometimes brilliantly sketched by the hon. the Prime Minister and by the Minister of Native Administration and Development and not so brilliantly by back-benchers on the other side, but it all boils down to this vision, Mr. Chairman, that they see the future South Africa divided into two parts, a black part and a white part, with the great bulk of the Natives living in the black republics and the Whites in a white republic, with the only Natives in the future white state as migrant labourers. I think that is a fair summary of what the end vision is of this policy of apartheid. It is on this vision of the future they are unfortunately acting now. This vision has not come any nearer realization in the past 13 years. This has, however, not in any way prohibited this Government from acting as if this state of affairs is there already. This explains the steady erosion of the citizen rights that Natives still had in South Africa, this explains the removal of their representatives from this Parliament, this explains why the Government resolutely refuses to give the Natives any freehold title once they have built houses for the Natives, for which, as the hon. member for Transkeian Territories said all credit is due to the Government. In fact every new discriminatory step is justified by the fact, and the hon. member for Fort Beaufort (Dr. Jonker) said it more explicitly when he said that the Natives are not really citizens of South Africa, they are merely citizens of some future foreign state.
I said that they are not citizens in the sense the Whites are citizens.
Sir, it is this attitude, these steps which have made South Africa the polecat amongst nations in the world, but all these steps are justified by the vision that at some time in the future all the Natives living in South Africa presently will be foreigners, citizens of independent foreign states.
It is also this vision that causes the Prime Minister and the hon. the Minister of Native Affairs and other lesser luminaries to promise future independence to these Bantustans which are still to be created in future. I wonder whether the Minister has ever considered the dangerous consequences if this vision is not realized in the future? Let us assume that in 20 years’ time the vision has not yet come any nearer to realization, what sort of a situation will be found in South Africa then? You will find that in South Africa far and away the majority of the people living in the so-called White Republic will be foreigners belonging to independent Black republics outside our borders, and if what has happened in every other part of Africa is a guide, there republics will not be too friendly disposed towards South Africa. So we will have the fantastic proposition that the great majority of the people living in the so-called White republic will be foreigners owing allegiance to foreign states outside our borders, states which will not be friendly disposed to the White State. Sir, I cannot think of any parallel to this. The nearest parallel must surely be the Roman Empire before its decline, when the great majority of the people in the Empire were not citizens of the Roman Empire and when the barbarians came marching in, Rome was a push-over because they could not rely on the loyalty of the great mass of the people who lived in Italy at that time.
You are a bad historian.
Sir, unless the races can really be separated in terms of this vision, the policy of this Government must fail. I think the hon. the Minister is a very honest man and will be the first to admit that unless he can substantially separate the races, this is a most dangerous policy on which we are embarking at the moment—the political development both in the White areas and in the Native areas taking place now, which is causing not only international tension, but also local tension. Now what are the chances of this vision being realized? Mr. Chairman, in matters of this kind one cannot really only make a judgment of the future by looking back, and what has happened in the past 13 years. I do not want to cite these statistics to the hon. the Minister again, but he is well aware of the fact that in the past 13 years the greatest part of the increase in the Native population has been in the White areas and not in the Native areas. My hon. friend here mentioned to-day that the urban Native population has increased by 1,000,000. If he wants to stop that, he must pose the question why that did happen, and the causes are quite simple. All economic growth in the past 13 years has been confined to the White areas. One can only have economic growth if one invests money, one can only create new jobs for a rapidly growing population and increase your standard of living if there is investment in a large way. We are investing currently at the rate of approximately R1,000,000,000 a year. The bulk of that investment takes place in the White areas. That is why the Natives must come here and look for work here and cannot stay in the reserves. But if the hon. the Minister in the next 13 years wants to reverse what has happened in the past 13 years, he will have to take very decisive steps and very soon. He will have to see that a very large percentage of this annual investment that we have in this country is diverted to the Bantu areas, to those areas that he envisages as the future black republics. I cannot tell him what the exact sums must be, but I can give him an indication of the order of what those sums will have to be if he wants to follow my advice. I have said already that currently a thousand million Rand is invested in the Union every year for economic growth, for progress and to create new jobs for the new citizens of South Africa who come on the labour market every year. Mr. Chairman, our population increase is about of the order of 250,000 a year, of which 150,000 are Natives. Now starting from that, it is quite a simple arithmetical sum for the Minister to realize that a very substantial part, at least between one-third and a half, of our total investment of R1,000,000,000 will have to be diverted to the Native reserves, if the increase of the Native population in future is to be confined to the Native reserves. It will have to be something of the order of between R200,000,000 and R500,000,000 which he will have to start investing annually to make any impression on the population pattern as it exists to-day, if he wants to create a substantial black republic and a substantially white republic. And who is the authority that must act? The authority that must act is the Government itself. The Government must immediately start by providing the essential services for economic development: Water, transport, roads. We know that in the past 13 years we have had a gigantic programme of rail extension, but none of that money was spent in the so-called future black republics, it was all spent in the White area. That has now come to an end. I want to ask the hon. the Minister whether he can tell us to-day if he has plans during the next ten years for the development of railways in the Native reserves? If the Government is in earnest, the one thing that is necessary is modern transport. The hon. Minister of Transport has during this Session announced a plan for roads which will cost R88,000,000. I have looked at the roads. The great bulk of them are confined to White areas. Where they pass through Native areas it is purely a coincidence. Has the Government any plans for the development of the road system in the Bantu areas? We have heard of vast plans for irrigation works. I see that on the Estimates there is only an amount of R120,000 for Native areas, but we have heard of vast plans involving enormous sums for irrigation works in the so-called White areas. Can the hon. the Minister say what plans there are for the future development of irrigation schemes in the Native areas, without which we cannot have industrial development? [Time limit.]
The hon. member for the Transkeian Territories (Mr. Hughes) began his speech last night by telling us how much the Government has done in respect of housing, medical services, education, etc. for the Natives. But unfortunately he did not dilate upon it a little so that the world can realize that in South Africa we are now really in earnest in doing much more for its subject nations than we are accustomed to see being done in other countries. Unfortunately he did not tell us anything about it, but immediately switched over to a sad and dark picture he painted of how there will be chaos in our country, and how poorly everything will eventually turn out in this country, and that theme was followed by several other speakers opposite, such as the hon. member for Houghton (Mrs. Suzman), the hon. member for Parktown (Mr. Cope) (I do not know why I should always have to refer to them). What sad speeches they made. And the hon. member for Jeppes (Dr. Cronje) painted an equally sad picture of what this policy would eventually lead to. It is very clear to me that the hon. members do not appreciate what is now taking place in South Africa. It is very clear to me that they are living in an entirely different world. They are still obsessed with the old world idea. They are still living in the days when the world was still following the usual method, that when a nation came into contact with an inferior nation it meant war, destruction, exploitation, and if per chance some members of the inferior nation survived, they could discuss peace, and if eventually there was nothing more to be done, then perhaps eventually independence. But because South Africa is not adopting that course, these hon. members have no appreciation of what is going on in South Africa, and the world just does not appreciate it. The hon. member for Transkeian Territories said that the Bantu in the Transkei asked for independence, and everybody was shocked. I do not know why everybody was shocked. I do not think all of us were shocked. Perhaps hon. members opposite were shocked because they, like the world, do not believe what we are doing. But we were not shocked. That is our policy, and we are determined to carry out that policy and we know, and we do not mind the world knowing it, that when these Bantu reached a stage, they will get independence in their own home countries. But hon. members are still obsessed with the old world idea and they just cannot believe that South Africa, instead of talking about peace, is taking timeous steps to demarcate people in various areas, and that we are not only demarcating areas, but that we are also protecting those boundaries. We are doing that in preference to extermination. Where others are exploiting and have exploited, South Africa is trying to uplift, and that is why we are building houses and providing medical services, and that is why South Africa has set up a record to which the whole world may look, because we prefer to uplift rather than to exploit. These hon. members really should change their methods and stop sharing the views of other countries which cannot show this record, other countries which have treated their dependent nations much worse but still think they have the right to come and criticize us. I do not wish to dilate upon it any further. It will perhaps suffice if I were to quote an old adage in an amended form, namely: “People who live in White houses should not throw Little Rocks.” The hon. member for Queenstown (Dr. Steytler) had much to say about discrimination, and I submit that he also does not appreciate the difference between the world idea of discrimination and what is taking place in South Africa. The world knows only one form of discrimination and that is to discriminate on the basis of colour. I can well appreciate that in some of those countries the Black man has lived for hundreds of years already, and the Black man has nothing left that is his own, he no longer has his own language, he no longer has his own traditions, his own customs. Everything has been taken over from the White man among whom they are living. He has assumed everything belonging to the White man, and all that remains is that he has a black skin, but everything else he has is white. Now I can well appreciate that the nature of discrimination in those countries can be based on nothing but colour. That is why they think we are doing the same in South Africa. It is my contention that we are far ahead of the world in this respect. When we discriminate, we do it on a much more exalted and a much nobler basis, for actually we are discriminating (if I have to use that word) on the basis of differences, the diversity of differences existing between one human being and another. I am thinking of language, the tremendous differences in language there are, and religious belief and way of living and customs; what tremendous differences in standards of civilization. We are discriminating on these grounds, because we attach value to the human being, to his culture. We draw a circle round these divergent groups and cultures, and we are doing all we can to protect those possessions of all the population groups. I think hon. members opposite should rather try to be practical, and realize that in South Africa there is something belonging to this country and to this nation, and that they should accept it. Then they will be accepted by their own people, and they will be respected by the non-Whites.
I should like to conclude with a thought in connection with the expression, “respected by the non-Whites”. In this connection I should like to quote this little passage from the Cape Argus of 25 May. Here a Bantu with the name of Peter Makhene says something that constitutes a very serious charge against certain Whites:
That is a terrible charge he is making against the Whites. We should stop and try to find one another, then we shall get this respect which he refers to later, from the non-Whites:
Mr. Chairman, let us find one another and make fewer unnecessary charges against South Africa.
Apparently the previous speaker is in favour of apartheid. I am trying to point out what steps his Government must take if they really want to bring about substantial separation of the races. I have already pointed out that they have made no effort in the past 13 years to provide the public utilities and the public services without which you cannot have the economic development and the industrial development which will ever enable the presently envisaged Bantustans to carry a bigger population than they have today. I have asked the hon. the Minister—and I hope he will answer this question—what his plans are over the next ten years; whether the Government is now going to extend the railway system to the Reserves, whether they are going to have a co-ordinated programme of road transport for the Reserves; whether they are going to supply water and whether they are going to supply electricity to those parts. Because without those supplies apartheid remains a vision. It never gets any nearer. It is a rainbow policy, the faster you run to it the more quickly it recedes. And only the Government can provide these essential public services and utilities. Private enterprise cannot provide them and the Bantustans themselves cannot provide them.
We have heard announced in the State President’s speech that one of the main pillars which the Government is going to base future economic development on in the next 12 years in this country, is going to be vast expenditure by Iscor, Escom, Sasol and Foscor. He stated that the Government envisages an expenditure of R2,000,000,000 over the next 12 years. Can the hon. the Minister of Bantu Administration and Development tell this Committee how much of that money is going to be spent in the envisaged Bantustans, and how much in the White areas? Because if the purpose of that expenditure is to stimulate economic growth, and some of that is not spent in the Native Reserves, all the economic growth is going to take place in the White areas again, and we are going to have the same development which we have had in the past 13 years, of hundreds of thousands of Bantu leaving the Reserves to come to the White areas where there is work for them. They do not leave the Reserves because they like to come to the White areas, they leave the Reserves because they must go where they can work and support themselves and their families. I must grant this to the hon. the Minister—because he will criticize me if I do not mention it—it is true that this Budget for the first time votes an extra amount for Bantu development. In total, this Budget contains R 12,000,000 more than past Budgets for what is called the development of the Bantu areas. But if we look at the figures, the bulk of that—more than R8,000,000—is spent on soil reclamation and conservation; very admirable in themselves, but those things in themselves will not increase the carrying capacity of the Reserves. In fact, I think the Tomlinson Commission pointed out that if we ever had to have proper soil conservation in the Bantu areas we will have to reduce the Bantu population there. The amount that has been devoted to electricity, for instance, is R400,000, for the villages. There is another small amount for machinery. These amounts that are being voted—even this extra amount, welcome as it is—are infinitesimal in comparison with the figures I have already quoted, and with the requirements to keep our economy going. To keep our economy going and to provide new jobs we spend R1,000,000,000? every year in this country. What is an extra R12,000,000 compared with R1,000,000,000? If that is the only policy this Government has for the future, I can assure the hon. the Minister now that the vision which he paints in this House always remain in the sky where it is at present. It will never come down to earth; it will remain pie in the sky.
The hon. the Minister should not act as if we have all eternity in which to solve our problems in this country. I think it was the Chairman of Sabra, Dr. Geyer, who said that at most we probably have ten years in which to solve our racial problems. Surely this hon. Minister by now, after 13 years, must have a comprehensive plan for separating the races substantially in this country. The hon. the Minister always says how can we ask him for plans, but it is a well-known fact that every underdeveloped country in the world works out plans five years and ten years ahead on what they are going to spend, at what rate they are going to increase their standards of living, how many extra jobs they are going to create. The Minister’s economic advisers can tell him that it is an economic problem to produce such a plan. If the will is there and the Government really wants to develop the reserves to carry a larger population it is up to his Department, and it is not impossible, to work out a plan. If the hon. the Minister is sincere about his policy he should present to the nation a ten-year plan of how he wants to develop these Bantustan areas. And unless he shows his sincerity he will never win confidence for the policy of his Government, either overseas or locally. The policy of apartheid as they have seen it so far is simply the whittling away of human rights and no real development of the Bantustans, and that is why South Africa has the bad name it has to-day. It should be possible for the hon. the Minister to take this House into his confidence and to take the people into his confidence and put a ten-year plan before them. He should tell them exactly how he is going to develop the reserves and what sums will be involved in that development. That would be a fair test for the electorate. It is technically not impossible to do that. A lecturer in economics said, “You can grow bananas at the South Pole, but it costs a hell of a lot”. And the same applies here. You can carry out any scheme, only sometimes it costs more than it does on other occasions.
If this Government is sincere and is in earnest I think that the time has come, after 13 years, when they should put before the nation at least a ten-year plan specifying exactly what sums will be involved in developing the Bantustans so that they can carry a much bigger population. If the electorate is then prepared to accept that, they are entitled to it. If they want to pay the necessary taxes involved, they are entitled to that policy. But at present I am afraid that all that is held before the nation is a vision. The country is being made promises which, unfortunately, the bulk of the electorate believe in to-day, but which we never get any nearer executing. Meanwhile the position is becoming more desperate and more dangerous by the day, because of the reasons I have already given the Minister. He acts as if the people are being separated and on that excuse he diminishes the rights of the Natives and regards them as foreigners, whilst at the same time he is building up independent sovereign rights for states which at most, will never be more than shells unless those states are really developed. And the great majority of the citizens of those states are condemned for all time to live in foreign countries.
I appeal to the hon. the Minister, before this debate is concluded, to tell us what his plans are for developing public utilities in the Native areas, and whether he will consider putting before the country a ten-year plan showing exactly how much he wants to invest there in the development of these reserves. Because it is quite feasible in these days for an under-developed area to have such a plan. It should indicate exactly what the rate of development will be. If the Minister is interested he can read in the newspapers of the ten-year plan recently announced in India for increasing the number of jobs and the standard of living of the people of India over the next ten years.
I am afraid the hon. member for Houghton (Mrs. Suzman) will hold it against me if I do not take any notice of what she has said. I want to say something about her misgivings as far as the system which she calls the “endorsement out” system of the Bantu is concerned. Before I deal with that I wish to point out that like other people the hon. member is also subject to human fallibilities and that she has also made contradictory statements. During her speech last night she mentioned the case of a Bantu, I think it happened here in the Western Cape, that had been treated so unreasonably according to her; he had to leave the area. Eventually he returned to the Bantu area and she said that he received justice there, due to “the benevolence of relatives” whom he found in his Bantu homelands. That was the single example she quoted in order to criticize us.
You did not listen properly.
The hon. member must remain quiet now. That was the one example she used in order to criticize, but that one example gives the lie to something else which she says so often, namely that the urban Native no longer has any contacts in his homelands and for that reason they should not be sent back there. She gave us one example but the person concerned in that example of hers found his way about in his homeland because he had family there, and he could not find his way about here because here there was nobody to help him.
That was not all I said.
The hon. member for Houghton will have another opportunity to speak.
Yes, as soon as I sit down. I think the hon. member did so, but I am sure that in his speech the hon. member for Queenstown (Dr. Steytler) referred to Bantu who were born here and who had to work here. I should like to analyse that idea of having been born here and working here. Mr. Chairman. we must not think that a person, whether he be White or Bantu, can and may only be employed at the place where he was born. In that case, I wonder where some of the members of the Progressive Party would have worked, if they could only work where they were born. The hon. member for Houghton would have had to remain in Germiston and I would have had to remain at Lindley. If there is work for a Bantu in his homelands, he will work there under much better circumstances than when he worked here. We must get away from the idea that because he was born here he must in all circumstances work here. The hon. member for Queenstown in particular said that and the hon. member for Houghton also hinted at it in her speech.
You are distorting what we said.
The hon. member for Queenstown must withdraw that.
I withdraw it, Sir, and I ask why the hon. the Deputy Minister always misinterprets everything we say?
Mr. Chairman, the hon. member for Houghton spoke about “endorsement out”—cases of Natives whose books have been endorsed to the effect that they must leave an area. I wish hon. members would make sure they they understand and correctly interpret the labour regulations and the influx control regulations. The hon. member represented matters in the wrong light—or as the hon. member over their said she does not interpret them correctly. Every Bantu who wants to work in a White area, or who works there, comes from somewhere. He has a base and that base is either in his homeland from whence he came or somewhere in a White area where he obtained permission to come and work here.
Or because he was born there.
If he were born here he can work here. In other words, he can only have one of two bases—either in his homeland or at the place where he works. That is his home basis or his work basis.
Or because he was born here.
Sir, the hon. member may talk after me but not with me. We can sing together if we sing the same tune! The hon. member should think along those lines. When a Bantu enters an area and he has no work the hon. member ought to know that he has a period of 72 hours within which to look for work. If he is unsuccessful he remains there unlawfully. He comes from somewhere else and he should return to the place where he is registered and where he had a job, and again look for a job there, if that place is in a White area. It may be that he leaves the place where he was registered and where he was an approved workseeker, of his own accord, and goes somewhere else unlawfully. He must then return to his base from there. If he came from his homeland, that is what we should bear in mind, he must return to his homeland. That is the underlying idea in endorsing his book to the effect that he must return. If the Bantu succeeds in finding employment with the assistance of the district bureau or the local bureau, he may lawfully work there and he is lawfully entitled to be there. But if he does not find employment within the given period the reason is either that he does not wish to work or because there is no work for him and in that case he must return to his base, and the Bantu are assisted to return to their homelands at the expense of the Government. Recently three cases in the Wellington-Worcester area were brought to my notice, cases where the Bantu were sent back at the expense of the Government and in all three cases they found employment in the Bantu area. I think at Zwelitsha. The breadwinners of the families found good employment there and in one case good employment was also found for the wife of one man. What is more, there, in their own homelands they have an opportunity of living according to their own customs, to become property owners, and to enjoy all sorts of other privileges that they do not enjoy here. Historically they cannot enjoy them here because that goes back to a period in our history long before the National Party came into existence, in spite of the insinuation of the hon. member for Transkeian Territories (Mr. Hughes).
The position is, Mr. Chairman, that many of the Bantu do not wish to work where they are registered. They want to go somewhere else for various reasons. In that case there are all sorts of people, like the Black Sash amongst others, and it seems to me as though the hon. member for Houghton is their official mouthpiece in this House, who assist the Native in leaving the place where he can obtain employment lawfully, and take them under their care in the area where he has no right to be. We know for what reason the Black Sash was established but they did not achieve anything in that sphere. They are now operating in another field but neither are they making any impression there. The Black Sash organization under their local leader is well known to the Department, particularly here in Cape Town. As far as I know the organization is not interested in assisting to solve the very real problem which exists in regard to the Bantu. No, they merely prey on it to get political ammunition. That is all they are looking for. Those are political explosives which usually explode in the faces of those who handle them, as happens when people handle explosives without knowing how to handle them. Recently the Black Sash came to our Cape Town offices of Bantu Affairs and complained about three or four cases, and when the officials went into those cases they found that those Bantu had never even made it their business to look for work. The complaints of the Black Sash were simply based on hearsay stories. The position was put right because the officials took action in the interests of the Bantu, something which the Black Sash could also have done had they been bona fide. The fact of the matter is that the hon. member for Houghton and the Progressive Party and the Black Sash—the whole bunch of them—are against influx control, they are against control and against labour bureaux. They are against that and the hon. member opposite, the hon. member for East London (City) (Dr. D. L. Smit), who ought to know better, who was a senior official in this Department and who knows what the purpose is, is also against it. What is the purpose of influx control? In the very first instance it is to serve the interests of the Bantu himself. [Time limit.]
I do not want to follow the hon. the Deputy Minister in and out of the reserves, with endorsements in or out, because I think he will find that he will put his Minister in a difficult position if he follows that argument too far. The hon. the Minister complained that the trouble in Pondoland was from all the tsotsis from the towns who had come and stirred up trouble. Who were those tsotsis but the very people that the hon. the Deputy Minister is now talking about as having been endorsed back to their fatherland. However, I think this matter is far too serious for us to spend time on these minor details. After listening to the hon. the Minister going into orbit this morning and floating around in a beautiful haze of policy, miles away from the realities of South African life, it is our task as an Opposition to try to bring him back to the hard, cold facts of what is happening here in South Africa, and not in orbit or on the moon.
The hon. the Minister talks blithely of self-government and this policy that is going to develop to give the Bantu full opportunity for themselves. I notice he has changed the title of his policy, because in this document, the Tomlinson Report, which the hon. the Minister himself signed as Deputy Chairman, the name of the policy was then “A State within a State”. On page 67, Section 4, paragraph 25 there is this reference—
Then he goes on and says—
These are the hon. the Minister’s words in the Tomlinson Commission report. This was not said in a speech, not loose words uttered casually at some meeting, but a statement recorded in an official report of the Commission of which he was Vice-Chairman. But now we no longer have a state within a state; we now have self-government. Yet the hon. the Minister and every hon. member on that side of the House runs like mad as soon as you get to the consequences of that policy.
The Minister accused us of putting up spooks when we sooke of ultimate … [Interjections.] Yes, he spoke of “spooks”. [Laughter.] Those hon. members who are laughing are whistling in the dark. They can feel the ghosts of their own policy tapping on their shoulders; the ghosts of baaskap, the ghosts of herrenvolkism; the ghosts of “die kaffir op sy plek”. Those are the ghosts that are worrying them, not the ghosts which the hon. the Minister said we were putting up, but the ghosts of their own deeds and actions over the 13 years that they have misgoverned South Africa. And those are the ghosts that the hon. the Minister must now lay. And he must lay them not by orbiting in some dream policy, but by telling South Africa what he intends to do to carry this policy of his into effect.
My colleague, the hon. member for Jeppes (Dr. Cronje) put the 64,000 dollar question to the hon. the Minister when he said that the Government is to spend R2,000,000,000 in 12 years, merely expanding existing public utility services such as electricity and steel. The hon. the Minister admits that the Government has spent over £100,000,000—that is R200,000,000 —on urban housing for the Bantu in the last 13 years. He admitted in this debate, in reply to a question I put to him, that the amount spent on the reserves in infinitesimal.
He never said that.
He said it was “’n klein bedraggie”. I think those were his words. In relation to R2,000,000,000 I regard that as infinitesimal. But if the hon. the Minister has better figures to give let him give South Africa those figures. Let him give South Africa the figures of what the Bantu Development Corporation has spent on establishing industries. It is always investigating a project; it is going into a project; it is finding out about a project. How many factories have been established by the Bantu Development Corporation, and how many employees are employed in those factories? I am not talking about a few people making baskets, I am talking about industry giving employment to people. The hon. the Minister does not tell us that, nor does he tell us anything of the detail of the end of the road of this Government’s policy.
The hon. the Minister says that we are accepting the Government’s policy, that we are accepting self-government. Mr. Chairman, the hon. member for Transkeian Territories (Mr. Hughes) put the United Party policy very clearly. The United Party has always stood for local self-government, for the exercise of local power. That has always been the policy of the United Party. What we object to in the Government’s policy is the development of local autonomy for the independent states which must be created. The Minister cannot now talk of us putting up ghosts when we ask him about that ultimate autonomy and that ultimate independence, because those are not ghosts that we are putting up, they are the ghosts that the Government itself has let loose from the speeches and from the actions of its own administration in recent years. Now we get phrases like “anderswaardigheid sonder minderwaardigheid”. What does that mean? We are told by the hon. the Minister that race relations have never been so healthy in the history of South Africa. He said “Look at these responsible chiefs in the Territorial Authorities”. So I looked to see what the Minister’s responsible chiefs had said. This is what they said. Councillor Soshankana said—
Which year are you reading?
I am reading from 1959. If the hon. member does not like that let me read from last year.
No, read from this year.
The hon. member ought to know that this year’s proceedings are not yet printed. This Government cannot print things as quickly as that. But let us take last year, 1960. Councillor Dinwayo said—
What page is that?
I am reading from page 115. He said—
To cut a long story short. I wish to emphasize that the chiefs, the headmen and all the people who are in Government service are undergoing dangerous times. They may lose their lives at any time and at any hour.
That was on 6 May 1960. And the year before that we were told—
When you tell them the instructions from the Government they misunderstand you and think you are the people who are issuing these instructions.
Chief Majeke said—
that I have just quoted. He went on—
The hon. member is right. Let the hon. member say “mooi” now. He ends up by saying—
These are the responsible people who are the proof that the Minister quotes to show that South Africa has never known such happy race relations; such happiness between the peoples. His own chiefs tell him, not in words or in messages, but in debate in the Parliament he has created for them—they warn him that they live in danger of their lives. They warn him that the people are opposed to his policies and that they, the chiefs, carry out those policies at the peril of their own lives. [Time limit.]
I said “fine” just now when the hon. member for Durban (Point) (Mr. Raw) spoke, because he had proved the opposite to what he had read out. He said the headmen had said, “Let us be patient with the Government” in so far as the application of its policy was concerned. Surely that was the object. Neither the Minister nor anybody else denies the fact that certain of the subjects of the chiefs were dissatisfied, but why? It was because agitators had influenced them against the policy of the Government and against the chiefs. According to the extent to which that influence wanes and according to the extent to which the agitators in those areas are quietened down, that feeling of antipathy will gradually diminish, and that fact is very clear if you read between the lines of what the hon. member has quoted.
We on this side of the House are disillusioned afresh to-day and surprised that that was all that the other side could offer. This is the first full-scale debate on Bantu affairs since we have become a republic. Usually it ends in a discussion on race relations. We expected hon. members opposite to come forward and guide their supporters with positive ideas and, as a possible alternative government, to say: This is our policy; we will suggest this or that at the next election in order to improve race relations. But what did we get? Right from the outset we only had attacks on minor points. The hon. member for Houghton (Mrs. Suzman) told us how the Black Sash had assisted a certain Native to return to his homeland, how they followed the matter up and found that although he had not faired too well, he had nevertheless found a home with the assistance of his family. She also told us of another one who could not count up to ten in Zulu and that because of that he was returned to Rhodesia. Thousands of foreign Natives pretend that they are Zulus or Union Natives so that they may remain here and it is only a member like the hon. member for King William’s Town (Mr. Warren) with his knowledge of the Zulu and Xhosa languages who will be able to determine whether such a Native is pretending to be what he is not. That was probably how that Bantu was caught out. He could not pronounce his own language properly or count up to ten in it.
I am very sorry that the segregation policy of the late Gen. Hertzog could not have been applied during his own régime. He could not do so because of the opposition which that policy received from the predecessors of that side of the House at that time. Had he not been prevented from applying his policy at that time, we would have progressed much further to-day, because time is running out on us. The development of Bantu states outside our borders and the general change in attitude on the part of the Western world in respect of the granting of independence and the granting of rights to the Bantu when they are not ripe for it has now reached its pinnacle and the National Party Government is expected to put right in one decade everything that has gone wrong in the past. That was why we expected the Opposition to react better in our new republic to the friendly invitation of the hon. the Prime Minister, namely that we should build the Republic together and that we should stand closer together as far as our major problem, that of race relationships, is concerned. Years ago, when I was still a student, I sat in a class of Dr. Werner Eiselen when he was still a professor; he said, inter alia, that if the White man in South Africa did not succeed in establishing sound relations between the non-White and White races, there was no future for the White man in the whole of Africa. That is true. There is only one solution, there is no alternative as the hon. member for Sunnyside (Mr. Horak) alleged yesterday, namely to place each race in his own area where he can develop and live happily as a race. A light-weight boxer does not feel happy in the ring against a heavy-weight boxer and that applies to all spheres of life. You cannot allow a group of immature school children who have elected a leader to send him to the School Board and expect him to have a say as a mature member in educational matters and in the administration of the school; but within the limits of the rules of the school the teacher may allow the children to elect their own leader and they will negotiate with him at his level. That is precisely what this Government wishes to do. The Government does not wish to bring the immature Bantu into this House at the same level as other members. We can negotiate with him at his own level and in his own area. The only solution is separate development. That is the policy of this Government and it is practicable. Firstly, develop the Bantu homelands and assist the Government in doing so. And when we do that, do not go to the platteland and tell the people that the Government is currying favour with the Natives. If the Bantu homelands are not developed our policy cannot succeed. We realize that and that is why we are doing it. In the second place: Rather help us to establish industries near the borders of the reserves so that we may establish ethnic groups there where they can live happily, so that they can come and work in the White areas, so that the Bantu who is misplaced here, Bantu who have become detribalized and degenerated can go and live there but nevertheless make their labour resources available. Let the Opposition assist us in removing the foreign Native, of whom there are about 1,000,000, from this country, and do not complain when anyone is inconvenienced when we send him back. The Government must have such control over the borders that they cannot continually stream into this country where they overshadow our own Natives and blacken the country all the more. Rather help us to send those Bantu back to the protectorates, with whom our state relationship has now changed. The people of Basutoland have been living and preying on the Union for the past 100 years, and so have the Bechuanas. If we cannot get them and other foreign Bantu out of this country and keep them out there is no hope for the future. Let us, for the time being at least, send back all the superfluous Natives who have become integrated in our industrial life to their homelands. Let us introduce a quota system in respect of the labour which every industrialist and every employer requires and let the balance return to their homelands. I maintain that it is incorrect to allege that the Bantu areas cannot carry them. In Europe and in the eastern countries you find more thousands of people per square mile than in any of our reserves. The Bantu homelands have a higher potential than any other part of this country and they are at least as good as any other place in the world. [Time limit.]
The hon. member for Marico (Mr. Grobler) says that in suggesting that the Bantu areas are not capable of carrying the Bantu population, we do not know what we are talking about. I want to address some questions to the hon. the Minister on that theme, because it is quite clear to us that the reserves are not capable of carrying the population, and in that I am firmly supported by the findings of the Tomlinson Commission. I support the plea of the hon. member for Jeppes (Dr. Cronje) when he asked the Minister for his plans for the development of the Native reserves so as to increase their carrying capacity during the next ten years. He showed that capital was necessary and that the Government would have to supply public services such as transport and water, and he asked the Minister for details of his plans. I support that plea because the evidence of the last 13 years, and particularly of the last six years, shows that very little has been achieved in the way of practical results in the development of the reserves, and in the creation of opportunities for Bantu in commerce and industry, which is the only way in which the carrying capacity of the reserves can be increased. The Tomlinson Commission found that people would have to be taken off the land because there were too many people engaged in agriculture in the reserves, and if you want to increase the carrying capacity, opportunities have to be found for those people in commerce and industry, quite apart from those now living outside the reserves and whom it is Government policy to send back to the reserves. When the Tomlinson Commission considered this question up to 1955, they worked on the basis of having some 40 years to achieve separate development. They gave figures for the year 2000. However it is quite clear that since 1955 the whole pace of events has quickened to such an extent that we have not got 40 years, or even 20 years. If we are lucky we may have ten years. But in spite of having less time in which to develop the reserves, so as to change the pattern of development in South Africa, which is the development of the African in the towns—instead of having 40 years we now have ten years at the utmost to reverse this trend, and instead of going at the rate recommended by the commission, or faster, to achieve it in less time, the Government is actually falling far behind in its schedule of developing the reserves. I think the increase in the carrying capacity of the reserves should be judged by the number of jobs made available in commerce and industry over the last six years, and the number of jobs which can be created in the next ten years. Unless the Minister can show us that there will be very rapid development, his whole policy falls down, and that is what is happening to-day.
Last year figures were asked for of the number of towns and villages which had been developed in the reserves since 1955 and the Minister answered to the effect that some 22 rural villages had been set up with a total population of some 10,000 families, and that the number of businesses which had been established in these villages was of the order of 20 or 30. This is absolutely basic to the development of the reserves, the development of towns and villages in which industry can be developed, and which can give opportunities for commerce. Unless the Minister can give impressive figures of what he is doing in this regard, it is clear that his policy is falling down. I have quoted the figures given by the Minister last year. What has been done since then to change this picture? My submission is that not only has no development taken place up to now, but from now on there will not be development of any significance whatever, adequate to stem the tide of the drift of the Africans to the towns. The Minister says he will not allow European entrepreneurs to go into the reserves to start business undertakings. It is true that the Bantu Investment Corporation has recently changed its objects in order to allow it to take over existing Bantu enterprises, or even to start enterprises itself, but on such a limited scale that it cannot change the general picture. The Minister’s whole approach is that development must take place through the Bantu; it must not be done by Europeans, and it cannot be done, therefore, as the Minister says, faster than it can be absorbed by the Bantu. On that basis we will have no significant developments in the reserves at all, because the Minister has not got the human material available there to have large-scale development. He has not got the technicians or the professional men, or the skills or the capital. On this basis, not only have we not had any development so far, but we will not have it in the foreseeable future either. It is on that basis that we call upon the Government to give us a clear indication of how they want to develop the reserves in ten years.
Another prerequisite which the Minister has himself laid down is the consolidation of the reserves. I have spoken on the subject on a number of occasions and I do not intend doing so to-day, except to say this. The Minister said that they were having great success with their consolidation. I deny that, according to the figures. It may be that in the preparatory work the Minister feels he is achieving some success, but he mentioned Natal and the elimination of Black spots. The fact is that since 1954 only one Black spot has been eliminated in Natal, of 300 morgen. There were 211 Black spots in Natal in 1954 and there are 210 to-day. I agree that the elimination of Black spots is not the most important aspect of consolidation because the total area of Black spots is very limited, but much more important is the question of official Native reserves, of which there are 110. Unless some consolidation of those reserves can be shown, clearly the Minister is achieving very little indeed. Not one of these official Native reserves has been added to another reserve so as to consolidate them. This consolidation is proceeding so slowly that to talk of Bantu states, with the possible exception of the Transkei, is absolute nonsense. We have not got them; we have a lot of scattered, small reserves all over the place, quite apart from the Black spots. Even with the buying up of the land promised in 1936, the Minister is buying on an average only 50,000 morgen a year. That is the average over the last eight years. At that rate it will take him another 50 years even to implement the 1936 promise. We have not got 50 years to play with, and not even ten years. The fact is that the development of the reserves is taking place so slowly that the whole policy of separate development is falling down. The Minister states again and again that it is the Government’s policy to develop the reserves and to offer the Bantu opportunities there. They are in fact not doing so. I recognize that the Minister is putting a good deal of effort into it, but the difficulties are so great, it is such a Herculean task, that we say it cannot be done. I do not underrate the effort the Minister is putting into the job, but the job is an impossible one, and that is our case, that however good it may be in theory to talk of separate development—and we have qualifications on that—in practice it cannot be done, and in spite of the efforts of the Minister to develop the reserves during the last six years, practically nothing has been achieved, and that is also what will happen in the foreseeable future.
Mr. Chairman, it is always pleasant for me to listen to criticism and proposals, and I have often listened with interest in the past to the hon. member for East London (North) (Mr. van Ryneveld), but when one gets this type of ignorant and deliberate distortion …
Order! The hon. Minister must withdraw the word “deliberate”.
I withdraw it. I want to mention a few facts. Whatever I say, the hon. member says that that is not so. Now, must I withdraw what I said or must he withdraw? It is of no avail to argue with a person who reveals this type of mentality. I challenge the hon. member to prove to me when he ever visited one of the reserves to get the facts which he talked about here. I challenge him to show that he has taken the trouble since last year to go and collect a little information as to what we have done. He sat in East London and probably travelled to Durban, but he did not take the trouble to come to my Department or to go to these places to obtain information. If he had done so, he would not have made this type of statement. I give all due respect and credit to a person who criticizes me, but it is not fair to adopt this type of method. [Interjections.]
Order! Hon. members must please give the hon. the Minister an opportunity to make his speech. He listened very patiently to everybody and I make an appeal to them to give him an opportunity now.
The hon. member makes the bald statement to the world that we have done nothing. Is that right and fair and honest? No, it is not. Bearing in mind the seeds of prejudice which have been sown in the past and the troubles that we have to avoid, I submit that the progress that we have made is simply phenomenal. Sir, I asked a world authority on the development of underdeveloped countries, who visited South Africa in the 1940’s after he had again travelled through South Africa recently, whether we had made any progress in connection with the development of the Bantu and his reply was, “I am prepared to tell the world that the progress that you have made in South Africa in connection with the development of the Bantu generally and in the Bantu areas in particular is simply fantastic”. But here this great scholar from East London comes along and tells the world that no progress has been made.
I asked you to show us how many jobs had been created in industry in these 13 years.
That is the one yardstick. He wants to know how many commercial institutions and industries have been established, and how many jobs have been created. It must not be forgotten that we have had a difficult time; we have had to resolve many difficult problems, and those facts must be borne in mind. The first few years were years of planning and preparation. We really started with this work only when the Bantu Authorities were established so that the Bantu themselves could be brought into the picture, and the progress that we have made, particularly since 1955, has been phenomenal. I concede at once that so far no big industries have been established in the Bantu areas. He says that he is not interested in the small industries, but we have given special attention to the building up of these small industries. The fact of the matter is that we have made great progress with the planning of certain industries, particularly in the border areas, at various places. We have this further phenomenon that certain industries which are sited in the border areas and in the proximity of which we established Bantu cities, had so much confidence in our policy that they immediately decided to devote millions of pounds to the expansion of those industries. In other words, we have created quite a number of jobs there.
They have not yet been created. Give us the figures.
There the hon. member says “no” again. How can one argue with such a person? I say that we have made great progress with the planning and the expansion of border industries. We have made a good deal of progress with the building of our Bantu towns. Let me mention one example. We are now engaged in building the Umlazi township near Durban, which is a Bantu township in a Bantu area. We have made fairly good progress with it and some hundreds of Bantu have been employed as a result of the building of this township.
Why did you delay the building of Umlazi for ten years?
I did not cause any delay. The hon. member for Umlazi (Mr. H. Lewis) said last year that he was speaking on behalf of the Durban City Council and that there had been a certain amount of delay. I then said that I would write to the City Council, which I did, and the City Council says that they know nothing about it. In other words, he said something which was not correct. He now comes along and says that I am responsible for the fact that there has been further delay. Let me say that as far as I am concerned there has been no delay, and the Durban City Council and the Housing Commission can testify to that. The fact that there are differences between the Housing Commission and the Durban City Council is a different matter, but the Commission is a responsible body, and it must see to it that the best contracts are entered into, and that is being done. There is no doubt about that. I am sure that the vast majority of the members of the Durban City Council are perfectly convinced of that, but that is not a delay for which I am responsible. That delay is on the part of the Durban City Council, and I think that difficulty has been resolved. But as far as Umlazi is concerned there has never been any delay, and I said to the Durban City Council that if there was the slightest delay they should come direct to me, however trivial the matter might be, and they expressed their gratitude. Wherever there was some little hitch, my officials immediately visited them and far from causing any delay at Umlazi we decided only last week that there should be a doubling of the tempo of housing construction. The hon. member now comes along and tells the Committee this sort of thing, and the hon. member for East London (North) says that nothing is being done.
We did not say that nothing was being done.
No, we should not do this sort of thing. I want to invite the hon. member for East London (North) to make a little more contact with my Department and to get some more facts with regard to this matter. But I want to extend a further invitation to those hon. members and that is to visit a number of these places and to see whether we have done anything or whether we have done nothing.
I agree that you have done a good deal.
Let me mention just a few examples. One of the difficult tasks that we had was to house the people in the Bantu areas properly. In many cases they were scattered over the whole area, so that there was no proper planning, and I want to invite hon. members to come and look at the results that we have achieved. I do not want to take them too far away; I just want to invite them to come and see what we have done just beyond Pietersburg. We have given the Bantu in that area the technicians required for laying out a town. They have moved there themselves and they have built their own houses and now they are even building better houses to replace the first ones. I want to invite hon. members to come see what is happening around Tzaneen. The hon. member for East London (City) (Dr. D. L. Smit) will remember how they lived in the mountains. We have developed their own towns and the result has been that nearly all those people have left the mountains and have been properly accommodated. Their lands are properly fenced; grazing lands have been set aside with the result that in many instances we have tripled or quadrupled the carrying capacity of such land. It is not an easy thing to do this. This is not one of the things that can be done overnight. The hon. member for East London (North) thinks that if he plants an orange tree to-night, it will bear oranges to-morrow. One must first plant, water and care properly for that orange tree and eventually one has oranges. This is not something which happens overnight. The hon. member will probably tell me once again: That is not so. Cape Town has taken 300 years to get where it is, but he will say that that is not so. Hon. members therefore cannot contend that we are sitting idle; on the contrary, I have already pointed out that since the Tomlinson Commission’s report appeared, we have spent over R40,000,000 just on the rehabilitation etc. of the Bantu areas themselves. But what hon. members forget is the sums of money spent on education and other services for the Bantu. These factors are never taken into account. After all, these are large sums of money. How can hon. members now say that we are not doing anything? The Bantu Investment Corporation has also been criticized. But, Mr. Chairman, we only established this Bantu Investment Corporation last year and hon. members now expect that the Corporation should already have done everything for the Bantu in those areas. What nonsense and what an unrealistic approach! The fact of the matter is that the Corporation must first find its feet, and it is now assisting the Bantu at a steadily increasing tempo in creating new possibilities in the Bantu areas. It is doing very good work and is building up a very sound spirit of cooperation with the Bantu. The hon. member for East London (North) now says: “Yes, how can you do it; your principle is that the Bantu must be absorbed in those areas and there are simply not the necessary technicians.” Has the hon. member ever examined how we are tackling this matter? Never. That is why he has put forward this argument. The fact of the matter is simply that when we do not have Bantu who can do the work, we use Whites to train and to help them—White commercial people and White technicians—but we are integrating the Bantu themselves into this overall process so that they do not stand isolated; they feel that this forms part of their responsibilities. What the Whites are giving the Bantu is the necessary guidance. The hon. member says that capital has not yet been invested. How can the hon. member make such an allegation? But what we cannot allow is this: We are not going to allow Whites to enrich themselves in the Bantu areas. But White capital is continuously being invested and I have no doubt that we shall get all the money we need in the future for the development of the Bantu areas. I want to ask the hon. member for East London (North) at least to be a little more realistic before he makes this type of allegation.
I want to deal with the hon. member for Durban (Point) (Mr. Raw) for a moment. He has had a great deal to say. He has said that it is the people who are being sent back from the urban areas to Pondoland who are causing the difficulties in those areas.
But you have said so yourself. You have said that it is the tsotsis.
That is not so. The hon. member is quite wrong. But he has made a second statement which I also deplore. He has claimed that I, a signatory to the report of the Tomlinson Commission, have contended that there should be a state within a state. I ask him: Why is he playing this game? He is creating the impression that I have contended that we really recommended a political state within a political state. This is not so. In that chapter we were discussing the Public Service; we discussed the important function which the Public Service, the Department of Bantu Administration, fulfils, and we said that it was actually already a state within a state. That is correct, is it not so?
Well then, why does the hon. member not put it in that way? We discussed the officials and we pointed out that this Department, as a result of expansion in the agricultural sphere, etc., was actually already a state within a state. The hon. member has now created the impression that I am supposedly in favour of our making the Bantu areas a state within a state. I repeat that that section only related to the Public Service and not to the political structure.
I shall return to the hon. member a little later; there are other incorrect submissions which he has made but I just want to deal with the hon. member for Transkeian Territories for a few moments. The hon. member has also made one or two statements here which have really surprised me. He rises and says that it has never been the policy of his party that there should be separate Bantu areas.
He says their policy has been to allow these people to enter the White areas freely. The hon. member must not shake his head.
That is not so.
The fact of the matter is that the Cape has accepted the policy of separate Bantu areas. A commission was appointed which demarcated these areas. Natal appointed a commission which demarcated these areas and the Transvaal appointed a commission which demarcated its areas. The 1931 Act demarcated these areas and the 1936 Act extended them. This was the accepted policy of all parties in South Africa. It was the accepted policy that the Bantu would be given their rights in their own areas. But he says that they have laid down as a policy that the Bantu can freely enter the White areaas. But it was after all their party which placed Section 10 of the Native Urban Areas Act on the Statute Book which introduced control. I concede readily that this control was temporarily suspended in 1939-40 and that is why we had a large-scale influx at that time. But it was actually in conflict with the basis of the United Party’s policy. The hon. member can therefore not make the type of statement he has made here.
The hon. member for Queenstown (Dr. Steytler) has accused my party of not being quite honest with its policy because it is not giving the Bantu full opportunities in the White areas. Allow me to say at once that my party’s policy is that the Bantu can achieve full development in their own areas. There they can climb from the lowest to the highest rungs; in those areas we shall not allow a White man to stand in their way, just as we protect the Whites in the White areas. The hon. member has contended that one should really be given equal rights in the area in which one works. That argument has already been answered and I do not want to devote much time to it, but his further submission is that the close ties between the Bantu in the urban areas and the Bantu in the Bantu areas which are necessary for linking them together do not exist. He has even said that there are many Bantu who will never return to the Bantu areas, who were born in the urban areas and who will never see the Bantu areas again, and other hon. members have also said the same thing. I just want to point out to hon. members that this matter has been very thoroughly investigated in the past and it has been found, and I have often said so before, that close ties do still exist between most of the Bantu in the towns and in their own areas. I want to recommend to hon. members that they should read Mr. Mayer’s book on the Bantu in the East London location. I want to recommend to the hon. member for East London (North) that he should read it. Mr. Mayer is a lecturer in anthropology at Rhodes University. In that case he carried out a survey, particularly of migrant labourers—practically a house to house survey—and he found that 86 per cent of the people living in that location still maintained their ties with their homelands. Hon. members must not forget that East London is one of the places where these people have been separated from their homelands the longest. I have had this experience in the past, but he describes it so well in his book, namely that the Xhosa feel so strongly about this matter—and so do all the other groups—that they have a special name for those people who deliberately sever their ties with their homelands. They call them the amacheapize, which is derived from the English word “cheap”. Allow me to put it in this way. According to the Xhosa a man who does not maintain his ties with his homeland, is a “cheap” person; he is a cheapize. The hon. member for Queenstown would be called a cheapize amongst the Xhosa. The other person who maintains his ties with his homeland is known as amagoduka—the people who go home and wish to preserve their ties with their homelands. They are honoured by the Xhosas and the amacheapize are despised.
Do you know what the Xhosa call you? I shall tell you later on.
If I were to be a Xhosa I would tell the hon. member that he is a cheapize. The hon. member’s approach to this matter is incorrect. That is why it is our policy that these ties will be very definitely preserved. I do not want to devote too much time to the hon. member for Queenstown. We know that our approach to this matter differs completely. If he were to be quite honest, he should announce that he will wipe out all the boundaries of the Bantu areas in South Africa and that he will create only one South Africa for White and non-White. That is the logical consequence of his policy and he simply cannot get away from that. That is the logical consequence of this policy; he just does not want to say it publicly, because he knows that the Bantu do not want it.
I just want to say a few words in reply to the hon. member for Parktown (Mr. Cope). He has asked that I should make a fine gesture, here at the commencement of the republic. He has asked that I should state that I shall never again send Bantu to other Bantu areas; that I shall abolish that system. That is his request, and I notice that the hon. member for Houghton (Mrs. Suzman) is nodding her head; she probably makes the same request. The hon. member for Parktown has made one incorrect allegation. He has said that people have been sent to the Kalahari Desert. Not one of these people has been sent to the Kalahari.
The hon. member for Salt River (Mr. Lawrence) says “Siberia”. Hon. members now want to imply that these people are being sent to the Kalahari just as the Russians send people to Siberia. That is the impression that they want to create abroad. There is no such thing. These people have been settled in other Bantu areas, and one of the furthest removed Bantu areas to which they have been sent is the other side of Vryburg. I have been there myself. It is not a god-forsaken place. There are many good farmers in the vicinity and some of the best cattle I have seen for a long time. There is water and grass. These people have been sent to other Bantu areas, not to the Kalahari. I just want to tell the hon. member that if he expects such a gesture from me, then he is expecting too much because I have a duty towards the Bantu community which I cannot neglect. If there are individuals who make the lives of the Bantu impossible and the Bantu ask me to remove these people, then I must listen to them and I must do what is in their interests. I want to give hon. members the assurance that with few exceptions I shall not send a Bantu from his own area in future if I do not receive an almost unanimous request from the council of the area concerned and from the Bantu of that area. In addition I instruct my officials to establish whether this is really a case where a person should be removed. In such cases I have no opinion; I must remove such people. I know that the Institute of Race Relations has once again published one of its distorted reports on the matter and has claimed that this is actually a question of slavery. That is not so. I am prepared to submit a report in respect of each of these people and the hon. member will then concede that I had no other alternative. A remark has been made relating to two persons whom I have removed from the Transkei. Why did I do so? Not because they were opposed to the Bantu authorities, because every man has the right to his own opinion on this point. The Bantu authorities are being involuntarily accepted. They have not been removed because they are opposed to the Government’s policy. Every man has the right to express his opinion, but why did I do so? Because, when the chief concerned with his council and his people started to establish Bantu authorities, these two persons were the people who fetched tsotsis and threatened the chief and his people by saying: “If you establish Bantu authorities here, we shall kill you.” The chief, his council and his people came and asked me to remove these people. What else was I to do? Should I have left them to carry on behaving like this? They did not want to accept the Bantu authorities themselves. Ninety-eight per cent of the people wished to do so. These persons then threatened that they would stab the chief to death and that they would burn down the huts of his people. In this way they tried to prevent the chief and his people from establishing Bantu authorities and he and his council asked me to take these people away. What should I have done? I nad no alternative but to remove them from that area. I now want to give an example in Zululand. There I also had a person removed. In that case the chief and his people were co-operating with us very well in rehabilitating the lands which had been very much neglected, in undertaking rehabilitation work on quite a large scale, and there was good co-operation between us. This one person together with a group of other people whom he fetched, waged an agitation to the effect that these people should not rehabilitate their lands, that they should not build contour walls. The people did not pay any attention to him, and what did he then do? He went and with his few tsotsis he inspanned his oxen and ploughed over all these contour walls and the other works which had been built. The chief and the council then came to me and said: “Look, we will kill him.” Should I have allowed them to kill him?
That might perhaps have been the best thing to do, but I am not so unscrupulous, and in order to prevent ugly incidents I had no option but to have him removed. When hon. members said that Seretse Khama had also been banned, one hon. member answered: “Yes, but now he is back.” I have a number of pleasing cases of this nature of people who have been banished but who have fortunately come to their senses and are to-day co-operating with us to such an extent that they are playing a leading part in the development of their own areas. There is the complaint that we do not pay them enough, but those who want to work can earn a reasonable wage. Take for example the case of one person whom we removed from Sekukuniland to Natal. He obtained employment in a factory and later in the clinic. He received a wage of £28 per month, the best wage he had ever earned. We eventually allowed him to come back to his area. Thus I can give hon. members examples showing how many of these people later come to their senses. But they are taken to a Bantu area and they are free to move around there. They are not restricted, and if they want to work, we are prepared to give them work. But there are many of them who do not want to work. This is the type of person on whose behalf the hon. member for Parktown has pleaded and in respect of whom he tells the world that we are acting criminally. This is the type of story which the Institute of Race Relations has also been spreading recently. No, I have a duty to the Bantu and I cannot allow one or two persons to paralyse the whole community. When the Bantu ask me to remove such people, I shall do so. I repeat that I do not do so in an irresponsible or inhumane way. They can take their families with them if they wish; they are given a good hut in which to live. They are so free there that some of them simply run away. They are people who have simply climbed on their bicycles and ridden away.
Reference has been made to the Bantu woman whom I removed from Paarl, namely Elizabeth Mafekeng. She fled to Basutoland and this is one of the examples which have been mentioned. I offered to send her husband and her children with her. They simply refused to go. I now want to give the House this information. I understand that the Basutoland Council is not at all keen on keeping that woman in Basutoland any longer. The hon. member for Parktown must now complain to the Basutoland Council as well. If the facts which I have been given are correct they have already decided to banish her from Basutoland. I am therefore not in bad company. It is unreasonable to make this type of allegation until such time as hon. members have established the true facts. We do not act improperly.
The hon. member for Jeppes (Dr. Cronje) has raised a quite reasonable point. The hon. member is one of our pessimistic economists. If he had been in Western Germany for example when Western Germany was being rehabilitated, that country would still have looked like East Germany to-day.
West Germany received a lot of money.
The hon. member only sees the dark clouds. I want to concede frankly that an economist must be cautious. I am not an economist, but when I am cautious hon. members say that I am not moving rapidly enough. I want to concede readily that one must be a little cautious, but a pertinent question which he has put to me is this: What are your intentions as regards the Bantu areas? Do you have a ten-year plan or what are you going to do? I just want to tell the hon. member that I have already drawn up a five-year plan for the Bantu areas. I have announced it in broad outline but it will be published in detail a little later. This is a five-year plan which we have already been implementing in many places since the beginning of this year. Here we are once again following the sound practice of not only discussing every aspect with our officials, but of also integrating the Bantu into the overall development of this plan. The Director of Bantu Development will go to the Transkei in the near future in order to discuss the whole plan with the executive committee of the Transkeian Territories, after also discussing it with the officials in that area. I want to tell the hon. member that in general the Bantu areas are reasonably well served with railways. The question of railways is therefore not a very immediate one at this stage. The Minister of Transport is considering the question of railways in other areas, but at the moment the question of establishing railways is not an immediate one. I want to assure the hon. member however that an excellent road building programme is included in this scheme. The basis of this scheme is that a development plan covering the various aspects of the life of each ethnic group is drawn up. We have a road building programme in which the Bantu themselves are co-operating, a programme for each national group in South Africa. I just want to give one example. Last year we started with a road building programme in the Bantu areas of Zoutpansberg. and I want to invite the hon. member to go and see the results which we have achieved in 18 months. He can take his car and he will ride along a magnificent road through the Zoutpansberg mountains, a road which has provided a means of transporting the many products produced in those areas.
We are giving attention to this aspect. We are giving serious attention to a fairly large-scale development of their own home industries, and here I have learned particularly from the ten-year plan of India, where it is also one of the basic principles that they concentrate on the development of home industries because such industries create a vast number of employment openings for individuals. I have already said that special attention is being given to the development of border industries in the vicinity of all the various ethnic groups. Attention is also being given to the development of smaller industries in the case of the various ethnic groups. Attention is being given to the building of dams. I am thinking for example of the Transkei. There a dam is to be built which will easily irrigate 10,000 morgen.
What progress have you made with it?
We are engaged on planning it. Do not forget that we started on this five-year plan at the beginning of the year, and the hon. member already expects the dam to be completed. In the same way we intend building dams in the Zoutpansberg area, Natal and elsewhere. We are giving special attention to the construction of irrigation works. At the moment we are engaged in the Zoutpansberg area on an irrigation scheme which will place approximately 1,700 morgen under irrigation in the near future. This is one of our fine schemes, and other projects are also being considered. We are developing afforestation on a large scale. Hon. members have seen that an American forestry expert has expressed his admiration of what we have achieved. I must just say that the profits from our forestry projects have already increased considerably during the past year, and we very definitely intend developing these forestry projects on a large scale. There are sisal projects which we have undertaken. We are convinced that in a few years we shall be able to make South Africa independent in this respect, but again I tell the hon. member who has asked a reasonable question, and the same applies to the hon. member for East London (North) (Mr. van Ryneveld), that we have made tremendous progress in this regard. In the near future this programme will be published, and then I shall give hon. members a copy so that they can see what we are actually doing. I repeat: Do not expect me to create white elephants. Some time ago a chief came to me and he wanted to buy certain machinery. My official then told him: “Look, this will be a white elephant.” He then said: “No. you are now dealing with Black people, and it will be a black elephant.” And it was a black elephant. We gave him his way, but it was a black elephant. I just want to say this: Look, do not expect me to create black elephants. We must be practical. We must work on such a basis that we gain the confidence of the Bantu as well as the confidence of the White people of South Africa. Hon. members must not expect too much in the immediate future. But they can rest assured that we are making every possible effort. I therefore want to invite them before they discuss these matters rather to get the facts and to see what we are doing. One or two other matters have been raised, but I think that with these few words I have dealt with main objections raised by hon. members.
I would like to stress the unhappiness and uncertainty the Government’s apartheid policy has created among our entire population, White, Black and Coloured, and in spite of the hon. Minister’s assurances he has given no satisfaction in this reply of his and has not removed any uncertainty. I expect the hon. the Minister to make good use of the money that is voted by this House for the development of the Native reserves. That goes without saying. We hope that he is spending this money on a basis of a fair allocation among the various provinces and that he is not spending the greater portion in the Transvaal; that he is spending it in proportion to our Native population in the various provinces. What I would like the hon. the Minister to tell us is something practical. We know that the Native population in this country is approximately divided into three: One third in the reserves, one third in the European farming areas of this country, and one third in our urban areas. Can the hon. Minister say that during the last 12 years, the Government has increased the Native population in the Native homelands to a material extent? That of course is the ambition of the Government. They say that they are going to put all the surplus Natives, anyway, in their homelands. After 12 years we would like to know what progress the Minister has made in this regard. The hon. member for Marico (Mr. Grobler) stated that suggestions should come from this side of the House as regards improving the Government’s apartheid policy, and he went on to say that if we could work together we could build up a happy republic in this country. My reply to that hon. member is that if this Government had adopted the Native policy of the United Party, we would still have been in the Commonwealth of Nations. It is not for the hon. member to ask us now to bring about a change in our Native policy.
I would like to know if I heard the Minister correctly in his first reply on this Vote indicating that the Government is now in retreat from its apartheid policy. The hon. Minister stated that the Transkei was not to be a separate state. That is how I understood the hon. the Minister. And yet the hon. the Minister has promised that under their policy the Native homelands will all be independent states and would constitute eventually a commonwealth of South Africa. That is recorded in Hansard. Now the Minister comes and say that the Transkei cannot look forward to becoming an independent state. I would like to have some clarity from the hon. the Minister in that regard. The United Party has always stressed the impracticability of the Government’s apartheid policy and that it is quite impossible, at this stage of development in this country, to create independent homelands in South Africa and divide our country into different parts under the control of different nationalities as independent states. The hon. the Minister of course seems to support the United Party policy in his administration of Internal Affairs as far as Native policy is concerned. The Minister told us of the millions and millions of pounds he has spent on housing within the European areas where he has established a permanent Native population. To-day there are over 700,000 Natives housed on the Witwatersrand. That to me is very much in keeping with the Fagan Report, which is United Party policy. The Government came into power in 1948 on the apartheid policy, and as time goes on I am quite sure it will try to wean themselves away from that policy on account of the impossibility to carry it out. On account of the Minister’s change of mind, I would like a restatement from the hon. the Minister regarding the extension of the Native homelands. We know that the Minister intends to buy considerable portions of lands, now occupied by European farmers, and the Minister certainly must know what extension he aims at. Why keep it a secret from the people of this country? Why keep it a secret from the farmers? Why let them live in uncertainty and unhappiness? In the area I represent there are farmers whose ancestors fought it out on the neutral areas in between the various Native tribes and they brought peace to the Natives and stopped them from fighting and they lie buried on those farms. The hon. the Minister now anticipates buying back this particular ground, and these people would like to know what the Minister’s plans are. It is holding back the development of these particular farms, where the people do not know what the Minister’s intentions are. It is creating misgivings and unhappiness in the minds of all property-owners adjacent to the reserves. That is part of the unhappiness and uncertainty that exist among our entire population, and unhappiness and uncertainty is like an infectious disease, Mr. Chairman, it spreads. Now the hon. the Minister is also very enthusiastic about the development of industries on the borders of the reserves. I would like to ask the hon. the Minister if it is not his intention to eventually include these border industries within the reserves. We have indications that this may be the Minister’s policy, because areas, within the mile limit laid down by the Government for Native industries to be established, have been refused these industries, and to me it appears that they are refused because these are areas that can never be included in the Native reserves. I can easily see industries established at King William’s Town and in the vicinity of Queenstown and among various Native areas being eventually included in the Native reserves. I myself believe that this is the Minister’s intention. Perhaps the Minister will deny it. We would like to have his denial in this respect. The hon. member for Marico spoke about creating quotas as regards the allocation of labour in the European areas, certain quotas to the farms, certain quotas for the towns, certain quotas for the reserves, and that is why I ask the hon. the Minister what quota can he take in the reserves. If you create these quotas, you must know where you are going to house your surplus. These matters cannot be regulated like the Government regulates their party and regiments it. These Natives are a vast floating population, spread over the whole of the Union of South Africa, where they have contributed, by their labour, to the development of this country and to the increase of its wealth. They are part and parcel of the permanent population, outside the Native homelands, and the Minister himself is augmenting that policy by providing housing and other facilities for Natives. Of course we welcome that. We need these Natives among us. They have always been necessary. It has been a matter of evolution and you cannot fight against evolution. We of course in the United Party want the reserves developed, we want them to carry a larger Native population, but we have our doubts whether the Minister is making the necessary progress. A considerable number of Natives were already established on land which the Minister has bought. [Time limit.]
The last speaker has again made the old allegation of the United Party. He alleges that the policy of separate development of the Bantu failed because there are such large numbers of Bantu in the White areas and the Bantu homelands will not be able to accommodate all the Bantu. This increasing number of Bantu in the White areas is too often held forth as being ample proof of this policy having failed. I want to suggest that a whole lot of factors are overlooked through which the policy is not set in the right perspective. The first is that it is so often said that there is a tremendous influx into the cities, and the natural increase of the Bantu now in the White areas is not taken into consideration. I just want to mention a few figures in this regard. The increase of the Bantu since 1951 was as follows: In the Bantu areas the increase was 39 per cent, in the urban areas it was 31 per cent, and 29 per cent on the platteland. The total increase over those nine years was 2,250,000 Bantu. Of that 2,250,000 the increase in the urban areas was approximately 1,000,000, the natural increase. It can, therefore, not be alleged that influx control has failed because there has been a natural increase in the cities. A second fact is that it is wrongly believed in connection with the success of this policy that all the Bantu must be in the Bantu areas before the policy succeeds. This is not so. While the Bantu area is still an agricultural pastural economy every Bantu must of course be a farmer in order to be there, and it is foolish to think that all Bantu in South Africa must be farmers. There are many who cannot be farmers and therefore the absorption of all Bantu in the Bantu areas are ridiculous under present conditions, and on that basis it cannot be said that the policy of separate development has failed for that reason. I wish to quote Dr. Eisselen in connection with this matter. He once said the following before an audience—
Therefore, as the economy of the Bantu areas switch over from an agricultural-pastural to a commercial and industrial economy more and more Bantu will be able to be absorbed in those areas and all will not have to be farmers. But another argument maintains that the large number of migrant labourers in South Africa is also a repudiation of this policy. There is a large number of migrant labourers in the mines and industries and on the railways. This is no indication that the policy of separate development has failed because the Bantu need the Whites as much as the Whites need them. I want to quote from an article in Optima—
The Bantu is therefore in the White area not because the Whites need him so much, but also because he needs the Whites. He also needs the Whites and therefore he is in the White area. And this is not in contradiction of the whole policy of separate development.
There is a third factor which is always overlooked and which I wish to mention, namely that the increase of the Bantu in the White areas is due to the increase of the mining and industrial activities in the White areas at present. That is why there is such a large increase and why there is such an attraction for the Bantu. Their area is developing slower than that of the Whites but still the area is progressing rapidly as I hope to be able to show in the few minutes still remaining to me.
Fourthly, the hon. member who has just sat down said that we build so many houses and provide so many health services for the Natives in the White areas and therefore the Government’s policy fails. This is not so. It is by no means the case that the Government is doing much more here, or doing more than is necessary. In order to have sound White economy it is necessary that the labour in that economy must be contented and well catered for and it is for that reason that the labour force is being well looked after by giving them accommodation and providing good health facilities. The hon. member asks what has been done in the Bantu areas to make it attractive for the Native. I wish to mention a few figures in this connection. Take forestry. Commercially a total of 53,934 morgen have been developed and afforested. This is a large area. For their own use, not for commercial purposes, the Bantu have already afforested 800 morgen and it is planned to afforest 1,000 morgen annually for their own use. Now I want to mention the fibre production. In four years 2,000 morgen have been placed under fibre in the Bantu areas, and one morgen yields about 1y tons of fibre and 1½ tons of first grade fibre sells at £96 per ton. One can calculate for oneself what income is already being earned for the Bantu from fibre production alone. Allow me to say that R12,000,000 has been spent by this Government since 1948 on afforestation alone. From 1949 to 1959 this Government has put 14,330 morgen of land under irrigation and in the Bantu areas there are another 60,500 morgen which can be irrigated. Up to the end of 1959 land planned for soil conservation in the Bantu areas totalled 4,500,000 morgen, of which 1,750,000 morgen have already been dealt with. It may bore hon. members if I quote the figures but this is what the hon. member wanted to know. Six thousand miles of contour walls have been made and 113,000 miles of grasslands have been planted there. So I can continue. I can, for example mention how grain production has increased in the Bantu areas. I can show how the cattle population has increased to the extent where 42 per cent of the Union’s entire cattle stock is at present in the Bantu areas. [Time limit.]
Amendment put and the Committee divided:
Ayes—38: Basson, J. A. L.; Bowker, T. B., Butcher, R. R.; Connan, J. M.; Cope, J. P.; de Kock, H. C.; Dodds, P. R.; Eaton, N. G.; Gay, L. C.; Graaff, de V.; Higgerty, J. W.; Holland, M. W.; Horak, J. L.; Lawrence, H. G.; Lewis, H.; Lewis, J.; Malan, E. G.; Miller, H.; Mitchell, D. E.; Moore, P. A.; Plewman, R. P.; Radford, A.; Raw, W. V.; Ross, D. G.; Shearer, O. L.; Smit, D. L.; Steenkamp, L. S.; Steyn, S. J. M.; Steytler, J. van A.; Suzman, H.; Swart, H. G.; Swart, R. A. F.; Tucker, H.; van Ryneveld, C. B.; Waterson, S. F.; Williams, T. O.
Tellers: Hopewell and T. G. Hughes.
Noes—71: Badenhorst, F. H.; Bekker, G. F. H.; Bekker, H. T. van G.; Bekker, M. J. H.; Bootha, L. J. C.; Botha, M. C.; Botha, P. W.; Botha, S. P.; Coetzee, P. J.; de Villiers, C. V.; de Wet, C.; Diederichs, N.; Dönges, T. E.; du Pisanie, J.; du Plessis, P. W.; Froneman, G. F. van L.; Greyling, J. C.; Haak, J. F. W.; Hertzog, A.; Heystek, J.; Jonker, A. H.; Keyter, H. C. A.; Knobel, G. J.; Kotze, G. P.; Kotzé, S. F.; Labuschagne, J. S.; le Riche, R.; le Roux, P. M. K.; Malan, W. C.; Marais, J. A.; Mentz, F. E.; Meyer, T.; Muller, S. L.; Nel, M. D. C. de W.; Otto, J. C.; Pelser, P. C.; Potgieter, D. J.; Potgieter, J. E.; Rall, J. J.; Sadie, N. C. van R.; Sauer, P. O.; Schlebusch, J. A.; Schoonbee, J. F.; Smit, H. H.; Stander, A. H.; Steyn, J. H.; Strydom, G. H. F.; Treurnicht, N. F.; van den Berg, G. P.; van den Heever, D. J. G.; van der Ahee, H. H.; van der Merwe, J. A.; van der Merwe, P. S.; van der Walt, B. J.; van der Wath, J. G. H.; van Eeden, F. J.; van Niekerk, G. L. H.; van Niekerk, M. C.; van Nierop, P. J.; van Rensburg, M. C. G. J.; van Wyk, G. H.; van Wyk, H. J.; Venter, M. J. de la R.; Verwoerd, H. F.; Viljoen, M.; Visse, J. H.; Von Moltke, J. von S.; Vosloo, A. H.; Wentzel, J. J.
Tellers: W. H. Faurie and J. J. Fouché.
Amendment accordingly negatived.
Vote No. 35.—“Bantu Administration and Development”, as printed, put and agreed to.
Business suspended at 6.30 p.m. and resumed at 8.5 p.m.
Vote No. 1.—“State President”, R73,000, put and agreed to.
The Committee proceeded to consider the Estimates of Expenditure from Loan Account.
Loan Votes A to R put and agreed to.
The Committee proceeded to consider the Supplementary Estimates of Expenditure from Revenue and Loan Accounts.
Expenditure from Revenue Accounts.
On Vote 21.—“Justice”, R12,125.
It was with a sense of shock that we found on the Estimates an amount of R12,125, as an ex gratia payment of certain legal costs in the matter of the Crown v. Sergeant Arlow and Constable Hattingh. It is stated here that this is an ex gratia payment, and it must therefore be assumed that the Government has agreed to pay the costs involved in this case for these two ex-members of the South African Police Force. They were persons who were entrusted with the enforcement of the law and the protection of the public and, as is known from the records of the case they failed in their duty. They were false to the trust which had been entrusted to their hands and, as a result, they were brought before the Court and in due course convicted and are still in gaol as a result of that trial. In those circumstances it amazes me to find that the Government feels that there is a duty upon the State to re-imburse them in respect of the legal costs involved in their defence.
The country is entitled to a full explanation from the hon. the Minister. I cannot concede that he can give an explanation which will satisfy this House.
I shall give you my reply.
I should like to have that explanation from the hon. the Minister but, as I say, I cannot conceive that he will be able to give an explanation which will satisfy this House. It is in those circumstances that I propose that this Item, E, be deleted.
I will be interested to listen to any explanation the hon. the Minister has to offer. I hope that he will give a very full explanation because I believe that while in certain cases it may be proper that the Crown should make ex gratia payments, I do suggest that a very strong onus rests on the Government to justify the proposed payment of this amount to these convicted criminals who have been guilty of most serious offences and who are still languishing in gaol. I hope that the hon. the Minister will be prepared to give an explanation immediately, so that this Committee will be able to debate the matter, even in the very limited time which is at our disposal.
The hon. member concedes the principle that the Government can make ex gratia payments. The Government has in this case taken the trouble to institute an inter-departmental inquiry and I cannot do better than to point out the findings of the inter-departmental committee.
Firstly I want to say that it was a high-standing committee. The Government felt that it did not want to approve an ex gratia payment based on its own knowledge. For that reason it appointed the committee to make these inquiries and the committee has submitted its report. The committee consisted of Mr. F. C. Silk, the Chief Magistrate of Johannesburg, Commandant J. P. Gouws of the South African Police, Mr. F. J. le Roux, a senior official of the Department of Justice, and Mr. P. J. Theron as secretary. The committee after very fruitful consideration tendered a full report to the Government and as a direct result it was decided to make the ex gratia payments.
I do not want to go into what is common knowledge in Pretoria. It is that many people are grateful for the actions of these persons concerned and many are not grateful. In any case, it has been said to me: “This man has been persecuted and not prosecuted.” I leave it at that. I only want to say that it did not influence the Government in the granting of the ex gratia payment. There are other considerations. This committee says in the summary of its report to the Government in the case of the Crown v. Arlow and Hattingh—the report of a committee appointed by the Minister of Justice—that the following is a brief summary of its findings and recommendations. The Committee first puts the judicial system and says—
- (1) An employer is compelled to compensate his employee for damage he suffers as a result of his actions in the course of his duties, where such actions are without maliciousness or negligence. That damage of course includes costs of litigation which he had to pay; reasonable legal costs in connection with any legal steps instituted against him.
- (2) It is usual for the State Attorney, in his discretion, to take charge of the defence of servants of the State who are charged with contraventions of the Criminal Code where such persons performed actions in the execution of their duties as servants of the State, or related to his duties.
It is recognized procedure by all Governments—
- (3) As soon as it is decided to charge a police official with contravention of the Criminal Code it is expected of him to undertake in writing that he, if the Minister of Justice so desires, will pay to the State all the costs in connection with his defence in the criminal case.
- (4) After the case is completed it is decided according to the circumstances whether the State will pay all the defence costs, or only a portion thereof, or no portion of it.
- (5) In the case of Arlow and Hattingh, who were charged with murder, in which, according to the Crown’s case there were no extenuating circumstances, they were, because of the peculiar circumstances, convinced that their defence would not be in the best hands if the State Attorney, a servant of the State, should take charge of the defence where (a) the persons charged with the investigation, and (b) nearly all the witnesses were servants of the State, and the prosecution is dealt with by another agent of the State, namely the Attorney-General.
- (6) After consideration of all the circumstances your committee finds that Arlow and Hattingh’s actions at that stage were not such that they should be penalised for it.
- (7) The State Attorney says expressly that if Arlow and Hattingh asked for defence by the State in their case he would have approved it. He declares, in fact, that when he heard that they were arrested he gave instructions that the State should offer to defend them. The State Attorney also states that he would have allowed the accused to chose their advocates; and that he would have allowed them to chose advocates of the calibre of Munnik and Strydom, if they were prepared to undertake the work at a reasonable fee.
These are the advocates who were eventually appointed by Arlow and Hattingh—
- (8) Your committee is of the opinion that the State should not evade what in normal circumstances would have been its obligation, merely because the accused signed the undertaking in a standing order No. 818 (3) (b), subject to conditions. Your committee feels further that the State should in this case at least pay the fees which it would have paid if it had in fact undertaken the defence in the case. The Deputy Commissioner of Police was throughout in favour of defence by the State Attorney, and recommended it. Your committee feels that it should be considered whether Arlow and Hattingh’s attorneys’ fees, where it exceeds the ordinary fees of the State Attorney, should not be compensated to some extent.
- (9) The State Attorney, as well as his deputy, are of the opinion that the fees which the advocates charged for their work at the preparatory examination are reasonable. Both feel that certain fees charged by the advocates are too high. The State Attorney also thinks that the attorneys’ fees are far too high. In Paragraphs 53 to 56 the fees are discussed, and in Paragraph 57 a summary of the recommendations of your committee in connection with all fees is given.
Then there are other minor details. I just want to point out the recommendations in connection with the payment of fees. I need not go into detail. But the committee recommends—
This is the amount which the Cabinet decided to approve. Then the commission says—
Then the commission says—
I say again that the State went to work carefully in this case, appointed a very high ranking committee to report to it and dealt with the report of the committee accordingly.
The Committee is indebted to the hon. the Minister for the details he has given. This matter presents a number of difficulties, partly because of the great publicity which was given to the criminal proceedings out of which this Vote arises. I should like to know from the hon. the Minister whether he is completely satisfied as to the amount of the fees that were charged both by the attorneys and by counsel.
The other point I want to raise, because of the great publicity which has been given to this matter, is whether the hon. the Minister has given any consideration to compensation to those who have suffered as a result of the actions of the accused whose defence costs are being paid by the State in the present case? There are two sides to this matter.
What has that to do with the Vote?
This is entirely relevant to this issue. This Committee is being asked to approve of an ex gratia sum—and by no means a small sum—being disbursed on behalf of the accused in a case which, as I say, gained a tremendous amount of public attention, for various reasons which I do not need to go into at the present stage. I do not propose to traverse the evidence which was given before the Supreme Court, or to go into the question of the verdict. The fact remains that the accused were found guilty of certain offences, and the fact remains that as a result of the activities of the accused at least one person lost his life—so far as this case is concerned—and there may have been other lives lost as well. It seems to me it is a relevant question to put to the hon. the Minister whether, in asking this Committee to agree to this ex gratia payment, he has also considered—and what is more would be prepared to recommend some form of compensation to those who have suffered as a result of the wrongful acts and unlawful acts of the accused who were found guilty by the court. It seems to me that that is the equitable thing to do. It seems to me that if the Minister is going to hand out ex gratia payments with the one hand then he should, in the interests of justice and elementary fair play, be prepared to consider the needs of those who have suffered as a result of the wrongdoing of the accused. I would be grateful if the hon. the Minister could give us some information on that point.
I should like to say that I am not satisfied with the hon. the Minister’s reply and I for one am not prepared to be associated with the payment of this ex gratia amount in the circumstances which are set out. I would say that it is my view that the Government has acted in error here. They are establishing a precedent for the State to pay the costs of persons who have acted in flagrant breach of their duty. It is not an ordinary case of a person who is involved in a case of driving a motor car and perhaps being charged with culpable homicide as a result of negligence. This is a case where the accused were charged, and the evidence shows that they had acted in gross breach of the duty which rested upon them as persons to whom the safety of the public is entrusted. In those circumstances, whilst I realize that the amount has been scaled down and whilst I realize that the Committee has examined the matter, nevertheless the responsibility for this decision—as the Minister has fairly said—was not on that Committee but rests on the Government.
That is the case in all ex gratia payments.
I appreciate that. I want to make it clear that I am not attacking the committee. They were asked to investigate the matter and they came to certain conclusions.
Sir, this is a precedent which I am very sorry to see being established because it is now clear that in all cases in future, even of officers of the law charged with acting in breach of their duty, it would appear from the Minister’s statement that they can expect, almost as a right, that they will be compensated by the State. I cannot imagine of a stronger case against an ex gratia payment than the one which is under consideration by us at the present time.
Do you think the committee was wrong?
I am not suggesting that the committee was wrong. I am not attacking them, but I say the Government was wrong in agreeing to make the ex gratia payment, notwithstanding the recommendations of the committee, in the circumstances of this case. This is a case of gross breach of duty by officers of the law. It is not as if they were inexperienced young constables. One was a non-commissioned officer of very great experience. I believe that the Government would be doing the right thing if they refused to make this payment. It would be an example to other officers that they must not act in breach of their duty, and that if they do so they do it at their peril and cannot expect that the State will accept liability for costs which are the result of their wrongdoing in the course of their duty.
On the conclusion of the period of 125 hours allotted for the proceedings in Committee of Supply, the business under consideration was interrupted by the Acting Deputy Chairman in accordance with Standing Order No. 104.
Vote No. 21.—“Justice”, as printed, put and the Committee divided:
Ayes—60: Bekker, G. F. H.; Bekker, H. T. van G.; Bekker, M. J. H.; Bootha, L. J. C.; Botha, M. C.; Botha, P. W.; Botha, S. P.; Coetzee, P. J.; de Wet, C.; Dönges, T. E.; du Pisanie, J.; du Plessis, P. W.; Erasmus, F. C.; Faurie, W. H.; Froneman, G. F. van L.; Hertzog, A.; Heystek, J.; Jonker, A. H.; Jurgens, J. C.; Keyter, H. C. A.; Kotze, G. P.; Kotzé, S. F.; Labuschagne, J. S.; le Roux, P. M. K.; Luttig, H. G.; Malan, A. I.; Malan, W. C.; Marais, J. A.; Meyer, T.; Muller, S. L.; Otto. J. C.; Potgieter, J. E.; Rall, J. J.; Sadie, N. C. van R.; Sauer, P. O.; Schlebusch, J. A.; Schoeman, B. J.; Schoonbee, J. F.; Serfontein, J. J.; Stander, A. H.; Steyn, J. H.; Treurnicht, N. F.; van den Berg, M. J.; van den Heever, D. J. G.; van der Merwe, J. A.; van der Merwe, P. S.; van der Walt, B. J.; van der Wath, J. G. H.; van Eeden. F. J.; van Rensburg, M. C. G. J.; van Wyk, H. J.; Venter, W. L. D. M.; Verwoerd, H. F.; Visse, J. H.; von Moltke, J. von S.; Vorster, B. J.; Webster, A.; Wentzel, J. J.
Tellers: J. J. Fouché and D. J. Potgieter.
Noes—38: Bowker, T. B.; Butcher, R. R.; Connan, J. M.; Cope, J. P.; Cronje, F. J. C.; de Kock, H. C.; Dodds, P. R.; Durrant, R. B.; Fisher, E. L.; Fourie, I. S.; Friedelinghaus, H. O.; Gay, L. C.; Graaff, de V.; Higgerty, J. W.; Horak, J. L.; Lawrence, H. G.; Lewis, H.; Malan, E. G.; Miller, H.; Mitchell, D. E.; Moore, P. A.; Oldfield, G. N.; Plewman, R. P.; Radford, A.; Raw, W. V.; Ross, D. G.; Shearer, O. L.; Steyn, S. J. M.; Streicher, D. M.; Suzman, H.; Swart, H. G.; Tucker, H.; van Niekerk, S. M.; van Ryneveld, C. B.; Waterson, S. F.; Williams, T. O.
Tellers: A. Hopewell, T. G. Hughes.
Vote No. 21.—“Justice”, as printed, accordingly agreed to.
Remaining Votes put and agreed to.
Expenditure from Loan Account: Loan Vote B to S put and agreed to.
The Acting Deputy Chairman reported that the Committee had agreed to the Estimates of Expenditure from Revenue Account, the Estimates of Expenditure from Bantu Education Account, the Estimates of Expenditure from Loan Account and the Supplementary Estimates of Expenditure from Revenue and Loan Accounts without amendment.
Report considered on the Estimates of Expenditure adopted.
The Minister of Finance then brought up a Bill to give effect to the Estimates of Expenditure adopted by the House.
By direction of Mr. Speaker, the Appropriation Bill was read a first time.
Mr. Speaker communicated the following Message from the Hon. the Senate:
By direction of Mr. Speaker, the Medical, Dental and Pharmacy Amendment Bill was read a first time.
Seventh Order read: Second reading,—Railway Construction Bill.
Since the report of the Railways and Harbour Board, which I tabled on 9 June 1961, deals with all aspects relating to the construction of the railway line provided for in the Bill, and hon. members have presumably already acquainted themselves with it, I do not want to bore the House with details of the matter. There are, however, three matters which I want to mention specifically.
The line is being provided at the request of the Phosphate Development Corporation (Pty.) Ltd., mainly for the conveying of phosphate which is mined by the Corporation at Phalaborwa. At present all the traffic from and to Phalaborwa is conveyed by private lorries from and to the nearest railway station, namely Mica. The Corporation is rapidly increasing its phosphate production to such an extent that serious consideration must now be given to railway facilities.
The production of phosphate is, as you will appreciate, a matter of national importance. It is essential that South Africa should provide for her own needs as soon as possible. For this purpose a railway line to Phalaborwa is necessary to encourage the mineral development.
In the second place I want to point out that it costs an enormous lot of money these days to construct a railway line. The one to Phalaborwa will cost about R130,000 per mile. Therefore the Railway Administration follows the policy of only recommending the construction of new railway lines not needed for departmental purposes when the facilities requested are guaranteed by the interested bodies against all operating losses, including interest on capital and depreciation. The Corporation is prepared to give such guarantee and a guarantee agreement has been entered into with the Corporation. A copy of the agreement forms a schedule to the Bill.
Thirdly, I want to refer to representations made to the Railway Board that the extended railway line to Phalaborwa must not link up at Hoedspruit but north of the Olifants River with the Selati line, for instance, at Gravelotte or Letsitele. I want to say at once that the Railway Board is aware of the development potential of the area north of the Olifants River, but such a junction will mean a longer line to Phalaborwa than to the Hoedspruit junction, and since Foskor must guarantee the line it is understandable that they are not prepared to provide the necessary guarantee against operating costs on a longer line.
The fact that the construction of a railway line to develop the agricultural and mineral potential north of the Olifants River cannot be coupled to the Foskor line does not mean that such a line will not be constructed at all. The Railway Administration is of the opinion that it is a project which must be considered on its own merits. I move.
We on this side of the House raise no objections to this Bill and we will assist the Minister in its passage through the House, but there are certain aspects in regard to the report that has been placed before hon. members, which accompany this Bill from the Railway Commissioners, upon which I think some comment should be made, and I would be glad if the Minister would reply to it.
The first aspect of this report contains certain provisions arising out of the agreement arrived at with Foscor. It is clear that further changes are being effected in respect of this agreement and this is now the second instance where the principle of a surcharge on the actual tonnage conveyed by the Railways to cover the proposed losses, is applied. I think out of the number of guaranteed lines which exists at present there is only one other line where this principle was accepted in the past. The question I would like to put to the Minister here is whether he can offer greater clarification because it is clear when one studies the details in the schedule to the Bill that there may be variation in the charges agreed upon between Foscor and the Administration. In this case it is being fixed at R1.05. The agreement makes it quite clear that that surcharge varies according to the tonnages carried. Is it anticipated that with the expansion of Foscor, and because of the increased tonnages carried, this surcharge will be reduced?
Then the Minister gave points to matters which he wished to mention in regard to this matter. The first was the fact that consideration was given to a possible line to Letsitele instead of to Hoedspruit. The report that has been placed before us is quite unsatisfactory in regard to the information it contains on this point. The Board simply makes a statement that representations were made by local farmers’ associations and that an investigation was carried out, but the Board then goes on to say—
It seems, therefore, from this observation by the Board and from what the Minister said here, that the possible construction of a further railway line north of the Olifantsrivier is being considered by the Board as a possibility. If that is so, surely the construction of a further length of railway line of 50 miles will involve us in further expenditure which the Administration will have to find. In this instance, merely because the line is being guaranteed for a few years by the Corporation, the policy is followed of supplying the capital to build the line under guarantee and ignoring the other wider implications of railway transportation, like opening up new territory and the possible revenues that may occur to the Administration in such a newly developed area. It seems that the cost of this line will be over R4,000,000 and it is quite clear that it is envisaged that a further line will be built in future at a further expenditure of possibly R6,000,000 to R7,000,000. I am rather disappointed that the Board did not give reasons and I want to ask the Minister why it was decided to build the line between Phalaborwa and Hoedspruit, and not between Phalaborwa and joining up either at Letsitele or Gravelotte. I think the information given in the report is unsatisfactory in that regard.
Then there is another matter. It is a long-established principle that whenever a new railway line is built, the members of this House get full information. I took the opportunity of comparing this report with previous reports of a similar nature. Previous reports contained complete information in regard to the construction of the line, the terrain over which it had to be built, and satisfactory maps which clearly indicated the full implications of the construction of such a line. May I say that the map contained in this report of the Board can really not be described as a map, but rather as a squiggle of one red line and a few black lines. It conveys nothing to any members of this House who is not personally acquainted with the terrain. I would suggest to the Minister to make recommendations to the Railway Board that when they submit such reports to the House they should present proper and adequate information, as was done in the past.
With these few words, this side of the House will support the measure. We recognize the necessity for the development of Foscor. A study of Foscor reports indicates that they cannot much longer continue on the present basis of transporting their entire production by road, and it is a national undertaking. We recognize that the building of this line is absolutely essential. With that we are prepared to support this measure, subject to the Minister giving satisfactory explanations on the points I have raised.
We in these benches are in favour of this Bill in principle, because it seeks to facilitate the large-scale exploitation of our natural resources. The only question I think we are entitled to ask the Minister is whether he is perfectly satisfied with the guarantee given to him by the Corporation. I ask that question because of the chequered career of the companies which exploited these deposits in the early stages. I believe that Foscor is virtually a public utility company, and that the public of South Africa have a considerable amount of capital invested in it. I wonder whether the Minister would give us some information on that score, just to satisfy ourselves that even in this comparatively short period there is no chance of this Corporation ceasing operations. Arising out of this Bill, I wonder whether the Minister could also give us information in regard to his policy generally of building lines such as this to exploit natural resources. Could he tell us whether in fact there are a number of private companies which have applied to the Railway Administration for the building of similar lines, and whether in agreeing to build lines like this any priority or preference is given to public utilities as opposed to private venture? I ask that because there must be a number of such ventures. I have in mind a well-known one in Natal, where there is the possibility of a cement factory being built, provided the lime deposits in the Umzimkulu Valley could be exploited, which in turn would require the building of a railway line from Port Shepstone. Possibly there are also others in other parts of the country. Will the Minister tell us what his policy is and whether there are similar ventures awaiting a favourable decision from the Minister?
I will be very brief. I want to ask the Minister for information in connection with the anticipated loss which is guaranteed to the Administration, the loss of R439,000 per annum. I would like to ask the Minister whether, when the inquiry was undertaken, there were any indications that in this area to be served by this line there are other mineral deposits which will possibly be mined and enable this utility company to recover some of the losses per annum from future companies. I think it is important, because this amount of R439,000 per annum which will be lost is a lot of money, and if there are other mineral deposits in the area one can see that this particular construction may at this stage be for Foscor but may in future be utilized by other mining interests.
With regard to the question put by the hon. member for Turffontein (Mr. Durrant) as to whether the surcharge will be reduced in future, or varied, yes, that is a possibility, of course. It depends on the amount of traffic conveyed over that line. At the same time my reply to the hon. member for Berea (Mr. Butcher) is that there are other companies interested in mineral development in that area and they are making preliminary investigations. The Rio Tinto Company is inquiring into the possibility of producing copper. They have been not only prospecting but have had provisional development for some time, and once the copper reaches the production stage that will mean additional traffic over that line. There might be possibilities of further development. The hon. member will realize that the more traffic is conveyed, the less the loss will be, and of course the less the losses are the less the surcharge will be, and eventually if the line pays for itself, the surcharge will be removed altogether. The present surcharge is only based on the amount of traffic from Foscor, but the Administration is covered. There is one previous guarantee which was given by a company on similar lines, S.A. Manganese, for the line which we built and which is just about completed from Seisen to Hotazel. That guarantee was given by that company on similar lines. It is also a surcharge on the amount of traffic conveyed. The more traffic conveyed—and the possibilities are there that the line might eventually pay for itself—the less the surcharges will be.
The hon. member for Umhlatuzana (Mr. Eaton) wanted to know whether there are other developments. In regard to mineral development, the only company interested at the moment is the Rio Tinto. What the future holds in store, of course, I cannot say. The hon. member for Turffontein wanted to know why, in view of the possible developments north of the Olifants River, the route accepted did not go over Mica or Letsitele. First of all, as I stated in my opening remarks, this is a guaranteed line. It is natural that the guarantor wants the shortest line. The longer the line the more it costs and the greater the liability for any losses. But apart from that, this also entails almost the rebuilding of the main line, the Selati line, as far as Komatipoort. It is a very light line, with sharp curves and steep gradients, and the Administration would have to spend a considerable amount of money in rebuilding that line and strengthening it from Hoedspruit to Komatipoort. Obviously, if the junction were Letsitele it would be a longer stretch that would have to be strengthened, and it would cost more. The obvious route would really have been Letsitele over Zoekmekaar to Pietersburg, and then to the Rand, but that would have entailed the rebuilding of the whole line through the mountains at Tzaneen and it would have cost several millions of pounds, which is not justified. It is in the interest of the Administration on the one hand that the junction should be at Hoedspruit, which is the nearest point to Komatipoort, and it is in the interest of Foscor that the shortest route should be accepted, namely from Phalaborwa to Hoedspruit.
Why was no consideration given to the aspect, as exists in two other agreements, where the company guarantees the shortest distance and the Railway builds the line that it wants for development? In other words, if the line is going to be 54 miles to Letsitele, then the guarantee agreement covers the 31½ miles as if the line had been built to Hoedspruit.
That would have entailed a considerable loss to the Administration. The trouble is that north of the Olifants River there is no mineral development at present, and there is no certainty of any development at all. It is an agricultural area and the amount of traffic which would be conveyed over that line would be so small that it would not cover the cost. They say that there is potential mineral development, but no prospecting is taking place, and nobody knows what the development will be, if any. So it will be quite uneconomic for the Railways to build that long an expensive line, and for the Administration to bear a part of the losses.
With regard to the map the hon. member spoke about, I can only inform him that this was the actual map handed to the printers, a map giving details of the route together with the junctions and all the stations. But unfortunately, as the result of the pressure of time, the short time available to the printers, they mutilated the map. I can give the assurance that it is not the fault of the Railway Administration.
Then the hon. member for Berea wanted to know what the general policy is to build guaranteed lines and to build new lines where it can be economically justified. In other words, the amount of traffic available must be such as to justify the building of a line so that we can at least cover costs. The possibilities are that in future new lines, not guaranteed, will be built where there are strong possibilities of economic development. I can think of one line from the north coast of Natal line to Piet Retief, for instance. That is a line which will be built in future. There is considerable potential development in the Pongola area and on the Makatini Flats, and especially when the new Pongola Dam has been built a line will become necessary. The general policy at present is to build only guaranteed lines, where the Administration is guaranteed against losses. But in regard to the future, where there is considerable potential development, either agricultural or mineral, the building of a new line will be considered.
Motion put and agreed to.
Bill read a second time.
Eleventh Order read: House to go into Committee on South African Citizenship Amendment Bill.
House in Committee:
On Clause 1,
I would just like to ask the Minister a question in regard to Clause (b). The amendment in this Bill amends the definition of “father”. It is a most peculiar amendment which virtually says that your father is your mother, and vice versa. I wonder what exactly the meaning of the sub-clause is, and whether it is actually necessary. I appreciate that it is intended to say that the child will take its nationality from its mother, but I do not know the full import of this, and I would like the Minister to tell me whether this clause is necessary.
It is a very simple explanation. The sub-section rectifies an error which occurred in the definition of “father”. As it reads at present, a child can acquire South African citizenship by descent through either his natural father or his mother, and the amendment is just to ensure that citizenship will be conferred on the child by his mother only.
I wonder whether this means a split in the Cabinet, because at the time the original Bill was passed, when the previous definition was queried, the present Minister of Finance assured the Opposition that there was nothing wrong with it.
Clause put and agreed to.
On Clause 3,
I move the amendment standing in my name on the Order Paper. The amendment is to insert the words as printed, namely—
(Interjection.) The hon. member for Pretoria-Central (Mr. van den Heever) asked how a prohibited immigrant can be a South African citizen. The clause seeks to insert the words “or had no right to be declared a prohibited immigrant, or had no right of permanent residence in the Union”. The fact that a person has no right of permanent residence in the Union is clearly something different from being a prohibited immigrant, as was held in the case of Senator Ballinger some years ago. What I am seeking to do by this amendment is to protect existing rights. Here we are altering this law with retrospective effect, and I would refer the Minister to the provisions of Clause 24, which specifically makes certain provisions applicable from the date the original Act came into force. This Clause 3 is not one of them, but if this amendment is made we are altering what is the definition of what is a South African citizen, and it is clear that persons who could have acquired citizenship in terms of the law as it stood would now lose that citizenship by virtue of the Minister’s amendment. The clause in question is 3 (2), which provides that no person shall be a South African citizen by virtue of sub-section (1) if at the time of his birth his father was a prohibited immigrant under the law then in force in the Union. It means that if a child is born of a father who had no right to permanent residence, while that child would have been a citizen in terms of Section 3 as it now stands, in terms of the Minister’s amendment that child would cease to hold South African citizenship, or in other words, would lose his citizenship. The matter is somewhat involved on account of the wording, but I am assured by the Parliamentary draughtsman that the amendment as it stands on the Order Paper has the effect I have stated, and I hope the Minister will be prepared to accept this amendment. It is merely intended to preserve any existing rights which may have arisen from the provision enacted in 1949.
I want to express my appreciation to hon. members opposite for having put their amendments on the Order Paper well in advance. Last night I promised that I would come forward with some amendments, too, one of which is very important. I am very sorry that they are not on the Order Paper. I did not expect the Bill to come on to-night, and I was very hard-pressed for time. But to get to my amendment in Clause 8, I will explain it very fully and I hope satisfactorily.
As regards the amendment moved by the hon. member for Springs, he wants me to make sure that the children of illegal inhabitants who have not yet been declared prohibited immigrants will not lose their South African citizenship, mainly because of my amendment. Now in the first place this clause is not of retrospective effect and cannot therefore affect persons born before the coming into force of this amending Bill. There is therefore no danger whatever that South African citizens will lose their citizenhip as the result of this clause. I think the amendment moved by the hon. member is unnecessary and I am sorry that I cannot accept it.
With great respect, I have grave doubt as to whether the interpretation of the law given now is correct. We are dealing here with a vital question, citizenship, and Section 3 of the Citizenship Act deals with who are South Africans. It says “persons born in the Union after the date of commencement of this Act”, and the clause says “every person born in the Union on or after the date of commencement of this Act, who is not a prohibited immigrant under any law relating to immigration shall, subject to the provisions of sub-section (2) be a South African citizen”. Sub-section (2) provides—
That, Sir, is the present law and will be the law until an amendment is effected. If the Minister’s amendment is accepted that subsection will read—
Once that amendment has been made the law of this country will be the law as amended and the fact that under the Citizenship Act of 1949 a person would have been a citizen, would no longer apply because nowhere in our Citizenship Act will there be any provision in terms of which that person is a South African citizen. It is for that reason that this amendment is moved. The effect of the further qualification inserted by the Minister, is that the child of a person who has no right of permanent residence does not become a South African citizen. That is a new provision which is being inserted and once that provision is in the law, in examining the question as to whether any person is a South African citizen, in my submission, you do not go back to what was the citizenship law at the time that person was born, but you examine what is the law as to what a “South African citizen” is. In the circumstances it does appear to me that without the amendment which I have proposed, the effect of this clause will be to take away citizenship from persons who were citizens under the 1949 Act. I know of no principle of construction in relation to deciding whether a person has certain rights or not, under which legislation which has already been amended can be taken into account. If such a person applied for registration in time to come, he would not be able to quote what the law was at the time of his birth, but he would have to quote what is the law at the time of his application for registration as voter. It appears to me that he would unquestionably have lost his citizenship and would have to apply for naturalization in the country of his birth.
I think the hon. member for Springs (Mr. Tucker) loses sight of Clause 24 (2). Clause 24 (2) very definitely states that this special clause to which the hon. member is referring to, is not of retrospective effect. I think that is the answer to his whole problem.
Amendment put and negatived.
Clause, as printed, put and agreed to.
On Clause 5,
I beg to move the amendment standing in my name—
To omit paragraph (a) and to substitute the following new paragraph:
- (a) by the substitution for paragraph (b) of sub-section (3) of the following paragraph:
- “(b) on the date of commencement of this Act, is the holder of a valid South African passport and is not already a South African citizen; or”.
Section 5 is being amended and again the object of the amendment is to preserve existing rights. The hon. the Minister did not agree with me a few minutes ago. I submit that the provisions of Clause 24 do not affect that case, but that has been dealt with. In this instance the provisions of Clause 24 specifically provide that the amendment of Section 5 comes into force as from the original date of the Act; in other words, it is of retrospective effect. Here we are dealing with a provision of the law which says who are South Africans by descent. Here the conditions are being altered by the hon. the Minister as to who are South African citizens by descent and he is altering apparently the question of the date at which a passport must be valid. It may be that the law, as it will read if the Minister’s amendment is accepted, will be the most desirable. I should not imagine that a large number of cases will be involved but I do submit that unless an amendment such as I have moved, namely to substitute for the existing sub-paragraph (b) a new paragraph (b) reading “on the date of commencement of this Act the holder of a valid South African passport and is not already a South African citizen” it is quite clear that the amended clause will be of retrospective effect and that persons will be disenfranchised by the amendment of the law. It does not matter really whether the hon. the Minister’s interpretation is correct as indicated on the previous clause, but taking his own argument, because this is a clause that will be of retrospective effect, it is quite clear that in this case persons—there may be very few of them—will lose their right of citizenship in these circumstances. I hope the Minister will be prepared to agree to the amendment at least to protect any persons who may have been a citizen under the law as it stood because in future the law, as amended, will apply, but you will certainly not have the position that you have introduced uncertainty in relation to the citizenship of a person who is clearly a citizen under the 1949 Act and would probably not be a citizen under the Act is amended if the Minister’s amendment is accepted. If on the other hand my amendment is accepted it will mean that existing rights will be protected.
The hon. member for Springs (Mr. Tucker) always speaks so pleasantly and courteously but I am sorry to say that the dangers which he sees are quite unfounded and that I cannot agree with him in this respect. I must point out that no one has ever been able to hold a South African passport unless he is a South African citizen. I think the hon. member will agree with me in that regard. He must be a South African citizen to be able to hold a South African passport. This rule also existed before the date of commencement of the present Citizenship Act of 1949, namely that no person who is not a Union citizen can hold a South African or Union passport. The hon. member now fears that because this clause will be of retrospective effect, certain South African citizens by descent will lose their South African citizenship. That is probably his reason. I can say that that fear is unfounded. It simply cannot happen. I therefore cannot accept his amendment because it would be a completely unnecessary amendment. I think the hon. member will agree with this submission and will see that his amendment is unnecessary and withdraw it.
The hon. the Minister indicates that it is quite impossible that these circumstances will arise. I am trying to follow his argument, Sir, and I would not like the clause to pass. I have therefore risen in an attempt to put the position to the hon. the Minister why it seems to me that the amendment should be made. Section 5 of the Act is clear but there is an amendment and in terms of the amendment there is a new sub-paragraph (6)—
That the further consideration of this clause stand over.
On Clause 6,
I would like to ask the hon. the Minister whether he would be prepared to allow this clause to stand over until we have dealt with Clause 10 because I think sub-section (b) (c) of this clause, which deals with mixed marriages, is also dealt with in Clause 10. It might be as well to deal with this clause after we have dealt with Clause 10. I therefore move—
That the consideration of this clause stand over.
On Clause 8,
I move the amendment as standing in my name—
I want to explain how the clause will read with these words inserted. The present Section 8 (6) reads as follows—
And the following words are now being inserted—
That is what I propose, Mr. Chairman, and I should like to point out that in reply to representations submitted to me during the second reading debate that we should be more lenient I indicated that I would insert an amendment. The first such amendment is this one in Clause 8. I shall move a similar amendment to Clause 9 which deals with naturalization. Once we start making concessions and we place all these concessions on the Statute Book we shall simply create an impossible position. The hon. members for East London North (Mr. van Ryneveld) and Springs (Mr. Tucker) have both moved amendments which embody further concessions and I feel that it is best to introduce this general provision, this amendment which I am now making to the clause, and that it will be far better to give closer attention to all these difficult and deserving cases which call for exceptions to the rule. It will then be possible to deal with these cases on their merits and to ensure that immigrants who have proved their worth, who have the characteristics to which the hon. member for Salt River (Mr. Lawrence) has referred, immigrants who have done a great deal for the country for example, even if they perhaps cannot read one of the two languages, even if they speak both languages poorly, will be treated fairly by the Minister under this clause. I sincerely believe that by accepting this amendment many of the objections to the other clauses which have given rise to amendments, will be obviated. I think that this amendment which I am moving covers all these cases and when these cases are brought to the notice of the Minister he will be able to give them special attention.
I now have a copy of the amendment and it is perfectly clear that by the insertion after the word “national” of the words “or if, in the opinion of the Minister, there are special circumstances present in his case” the Minister is enabled to consider an application within a very much shorter period. I believe that is the effect. In this particular Clause 8 we are dealing with the case of citizens who have come to us from Commonwealth countries; Clause 9 deals with cases of naturalization. I think the hon. the Minister’s Intention is that after a period of a year he will be entitled to grant citizenship in these special cases.
If he was a former South African citizen.
Yes, if he was a former South African citizen. I want to ask the hon. the Minister whether this will apply not only to persons returning to South Africa from the territories to the North but to other South Africans who may return from any other country. I wonder if the hon. the Minister would explain the exact ambit of his amendment.
As I have tried to explain, this is an attempt to make the acquiring of citizenship not exclusively dependent on the period. Clause 8 has many sub-sections, dealing for example, with residential qualifications and all sorts of other qualifications which are required, but the intention of the amendment which I am effecting to Section 8 (6) is that when in the opinion of the Minister there is a deserving case, he can grant citizenship without the required residential qualifications being complied with; then he can treat other persons on their merits—even those people who do not comply with these other qualifications. If a person has lived in South Africa for example, and he should go away for certain periods, we are granting him a maximum reduction of two years. Amendments to the effect that we should increase it, have been moved. Representations have been made that we should grant a greater reduction but the intention of this amendment is that a deserving case can be treated on its merits and that reductions can be granted.
I am sure that the intention of the Minister in moving this amendment is a good one. He wishes to be able to extend the privilege of South African citizenship in deserving cases before the period has elapsed which is required in terms of the present law. We are in favour of that kind of amendment. I do not think that the hon. the Minister has adopted the best course in giving himself a complete discretion in the matter. I feel that it will be more desirable to lay down a definite period, much shorter than the period which is at present required, but nevertheless a definite period. It is for that reason that I propose moving an amendment the effect of which will be to reduce the period which is at present required but to do so to a definite period. I move the amendment which stands in my name—
It is somewhat difficult to understand this because this is an amendment of the amending Bill but I shall explain it shortly to the hon. the Minister. The effect of my amendment is very simple. At present paragraph (c) of Section 8 (1) requires a person who has been a member of a Commonwealth country to be ordinarily resident in the Union for a continuous period of not less than one year immediately preceding his application and in addition to have been resident in the Union for a period of at least four years during the previous six years. So at present you must have a minimum period of five years’ residence —one year immediately preceding your application and four years of the previous six years. The effect of my amendment would be to retain that one year’s ordinary residence in the Union immediately prior to application and in addition to require one year of the previous three, so that if a person has been in the Union for the last two years he can apply for citizenship. I believe that that is as long a period as is necessary. It is clearly the intention of the hon. the Minister to reduce the period which is required, to make concessions in order to attract people to South Africa. I feel that if one reduced the period in this way one would make intending immigrants to South Africa feel that they are welcome and that we wanted to have them as immigrants, which should be our intention. The hon. the Minister’s amendment on the other hand is to leave the power in his hands, to leave as the normal proceeding that the person should be here for five years. Whether it is the five year period immediately preceding the application or whether it is only one year immediately preceding the application and four out of the other six, does not make much difference, but the present norm is that a person shall have been here for five years before making his application. Now the hon. the Minister in special circumstances wants to have the right to admit persons to citizenship even if they have only spent the one year here and not the extra four. I feel that that places the hon. the Minister in an invidious position. People are going to make application to him and he will have to decide whether to grant or refuse their application. That is not an easy matter; one does not like to refuse these applications. That is my first objection. I think he should have a short period of residence such as I have proposed, namely two years, and thereafter he can act in the normal course—I think that would be more satisfactory. But also from the point of view of intending citizens, they ought to know where they stand. I think it would be very much better to lay down a definite period of two years after which a citizen may apply for citizenship. The hon. the Minister will still have the discretion after the expiration of those two years, to refuse on good grounds, but I hope he won’t do that unnecessarily. But if the hon. the Minister’s amendment is carried he will have people making application at different times. As soon as the year has elapsed they will apply for citizenship if they wish to become citizens, irrespective of the normal condition which is laid down, because the hon. the Minister has the right to waive those requirements. I feel strongly therefore, Mr. Chairman, that a definite period should be laid down, a shorter period than the one laid down at present.
I wonder if the hon. member appreciates the effects of his amendment. First of all it will reduce the period to two years. I think we must be very clear on that. I can tell the hon. member that if a definite period is laid down there will still be persons whose applications will not be covered by the provisions of the Act. I feel very strongly about it that the proposed period of two years is in quite a number of cases insufficient and it is necessary to go into greater detail as regards the character, etc., of some of these persons if it is not necessary to have them here for two years. If I accepted the proposal of the hon. member it would mean that the Republic treats applications for registration as South African citizens more favourably than Commonwealth countries did amongst themselves. This is a very liberal step forward, not a progressive one—just liberal. I am very sorry but I cannot accept his amendment. I think my amendment covers all these cases and I hope the hon. member will agree that it is much better. Even if you get persons coming forward after a year; it may be that you grant them citizenship after a year but others have to wait for three or four years or even five.
I wish to move the amendment standing in my name—
(3)bis A period not exceeding two years or one-half of any previous period during which an applicant for registration has been resident in the Union prior to the period of seven years immediately preceding the date of his application shall for the purposes of sub-section (1) be regarded as a period of residence in the Union during the said period of seven years.
The effect of my amendment, if it is carried, is that it does not leave it in the discretion of the Minister, as proposed in the Bill before us, to take cognisance of the period not exceeding two years or not exceeding one half of any previous period during which an applicant for registration has been registered in the Union prior to the period of seven years immediately preceding the date of his application. There are two provisions, Sir: The applicant can have half of that period of his residence prior to the seven years provided it does not exceed two years—two years is the limitation. The Bill before us says that those two years can be regarded by the Minister “in his discretion” as a period of residence in the Union during the said period of seven years. The effect of my amendment is to make it obligatory as far as the Minister is concerned for the maximum period of two years to be a portion of the seven years of his period of residence. Instead of leaving it to the discretion of the Minister to decide whether that period will be counted or not, providing that the immigrant complies with the law, it will be obligatory for the two years to count the two years. That is. really the effect of my amendment. I cannot quite understand why the Minister wants the discretionary power that is vested in him to deal with this particular matter, because the rest of the clause does not help us. There are no guiding principles to show why the Minister should exercise his discretion one way or the other There is nothing to guide us; it is left entirely to the discretion of the Minister without any guiding principles, for example, to show an immigrant whether he has got a chance of having the two years accepted—that is the maximum period of two years—or whether it will not be allowed for some reason or other unknown to him. Surely if the circumstances are such that the immigrant has complied with whatever the requirements of the law are, he should be entitled to have the two years counted. That is the maximum period and I move accordingly.
In supporting the hon. member for South Coast (Mr. Mitchell), I would like to put it to the Minister that obviously he has the right in certain circumstances to grant shorter periods in cases of persons where that is warranted. The new amendment which the Minister has moved is obviously giving him the power to deal with those cases. I think it is very bad to insert a clause that will in effect mean “you may get it” or “you may not get it Is it not better, in dealing with immigrants as a group, to say: All right, if you have resided in the country during these particular periods you can have this remission—you can have two years of your previous residence considered as residence to qualify. I think if the Minister would be prepared to accept the amendment moved by the hon. member for South Coast, in view of the fact that he has now the power under his own amendment to deal with special cases, he would more or less make this an ideal clause. I think he should seriously consider accepting it.
I am sorry that the hon. members for South Coast (Mr. Mitchell) and Umlazi (Mr. H. Lewis) as well do not wish to give the Minister the discretion for which we ask here. There are really only two points in this regard which are of importance. The first is that hon. members do not want to allow any discretion and the second is that the hon. member for South Coast by his amendment wishes to grant a concession in respect of the period of previous residence. It amounts to that. Why does the Minister want this discretionary power? Persons who are affected in this regard consist of various types of applicants. They differ from person to person and sometimes from group to group. For example, one person may have been living in the Republic and he may have had to leave the Republic as a result of domestic or other circumstances beyond his control. Such a person of course has a claim on very sympathetic treatment if he has to leave the country for reasons beyond his control. There may be persons who leave the Republic because they feel at the moment that they are not safe here and this type of person who has cold feet can surely not claim the same treatment when they have actually fled from the country.
But if they do come back?
They come back when they find out that it is in fact far better to be in South Africa.
As prodigal sons.
Yes, we shall still slaughter an ox but we shall not give the prodigal son the same piece of land as his brother. His brother kept his land. If there were to be no maximum period of two years then it would be most unreasonable. Say a person has had a total of eight years previous residence. Then he must be granted half that period and the four years of his residence will then count in applying for citizenship. But it may be found that he did not even become absorbed into our community during those years. There is also the danger that if such a person who does not seriously wish to remain in the Republic but who perhaps wishes to acquire South African citizenship for personal or selfish reasons, should acquire South African citizenship and then leave the country again, the Republic will be responsible for him. I want to make this plea to the hon. member for South Coast. The hon. member for Salt River has also said recently that the finest, the most precious possession one has, is citizenship of a country to which one wants to show one’s willingness to make sacrifices, one’s loyalty, but also one’s readiness to serve, and we must not cheapen that citizenship. We must not give these people who run away the same treatment as the man who has experienced difficulties and who could not acquire or qualify for citizenship as he would have liked to do. It is for this reason that this particular method is being used in order to give the Minister certain discretionary powers. It is such a public matter. If the Minister should abuse this power, it would very soon become known. It would very soon become clear if he does not exercise this right fairly in respect of all groups of the population. I therefore urge that we should not lay down this definite period and that we should not change the two years residential qualification either. It is a new concession. It has never been embodied in our citizenship legislation before. This is the first time that we are making such a concession and we must do so in the right way and not be too generous because otherwise it will do harm.
May I ask the hon. the Minister whether the discretion which he is trying to obtain under this amendment can be exercised in respect of all applications or only in respect of applications for citizenship in respect of persons who lived here previously. In other words, whether the Minister can exercise this discretion in respect of persons who have never been here before.
I am glad to hear that. The hon. Minister discussed the position in such a way that it seemed as though it only applied to persons who had lived in South Africa before. I now understand that it will apply to all applicants.
Yes. May I just point out further that a South African citizen who lost his South African citizenship and returns after a year can of course always apply to regain his citizenship. Then he does not need this residential period at all.
I want to take the point raised by the hon. member for Salt River (Mr. Lawrence). The hon. Minister’s reply dealt with people who have left South Africa and relinquished their South African citizenship, the weak-kneed, as he called them, and the hon. the Minister says in effect: These people cannot now come back again and get preferential treatment or equal treatment with people who have followed the hard course of acquiring South African citizenship. They run away and they must work their passage before we readmit them again.
I mentioned the two classes. You have the real hardship cases too.
Quite. Now the people who have relinquished South African citizenship can come back again and make an application after one year. But there the matter is in the Minister’s hands. The power in the hands of the Minister here to use his discretion in regard to that type of case is not necessarily in this clause. That is my submission. Here we are only dealing with the conditions under which such a potential citizen lives in South Africa in terms of sub-section (1). This particular clause inserts a new paragraph (a) and inserts a new (3)bis. All that we are concerned with is in specific reference to the clause is the conditions under which that man lives while he is in South Africa, as referred to in sub-section (1). Now look at the position herein, and in this regard I want to point to the uncertainty. He is not a minor, he has been lawfully admitted to the Union for permanent residence therein. He is ordinarily resident in the Union and he has been so resident for a continuous period of not less than one year immediately preceding the date of his application, and in addition been resident in the Union for a further period of not less than four years during the six years immediately preceding the date of his application, and he must be of good character and he must intend to continue to reside in the Union, or to enter and continue in the service of the Government of the Union, or of an international organization of which the Union Government is a member. He must be able to read and write either of the Official languages of the Union to the satisfaction of the Minister, or, if he has been ordinarly resident in the Union for a period of not less than 20 years, he is able to read and speak either of the official languages of the Union to the satisfaction of the Minister; and lastly, “he has an adequate knowledge of the responsibilities and privileges of South African citizenship”. This man has got to have done all that and must have complied with every one of those conditions. Now the Minister says: Notwithstanding that I want to have the discretion as to whether I will allow him two years to be earned during the period of the previous seven years. Mr. Chairman, I made the point that what is lacking here is security for the applicant. How does the applicant know what he will be entitled to get the two years remission—I call it “remission”, but it is not a good term. The matter is entirely in the discretion of the Minister. After the man has done all these things and above all (I want to emphasize that again) he has got a permit to enter the Union with a view to permanent residence here—he has been accepted for permanent residence—but the Minister says “No, I want to have just a little bit of discretion in case I do not want to give him credit for the two years”. Sir, I cannot understand it. I admit that we are making concessions. I don’t worry very much as to whether they are liberal concessions, in a progressive spirit or whether they are liberal concessions towards a progressive policy. That leaves me stone cold for the moment. What I am concerned with is the immigrant. How do we give that man the certainty that when he comes forward with his application for citizenship, having complied as to character, period of residence and all the rest of it, having a permit for permanent residence, he can know that he is going to be credited with two years in respect of the previous seven? Or is he completely at the discretion of the Minister? I hope the hon. the Minister is not going to tell us that we can rely on him because, as had been pointed out, this was not the Minister that piloted through the original Bill, and we know the assurances we were given by the original Minister who piloted through the Bill, and how times have changed and how difficult things became. We have a Minister to-day who has said quite frankly that he is going to make it easier for potential citizens to come and settle in South Africa. He wants them. We all want them. But this Minister goes some day, policies change, and then we are back in the difficulty that we have a Minister who uses that discretionary power adversely, and there is nothing that is going to make our potential immigrant more fed up and more disgusted than when he has complied with all these things, the Minister says in his discretion “No, I am not going to give you credit for the two years”, and that is the end. There is no appeal. Nothing can be done about it. That is when people turn to say “Oh to heck with them! I have been living here for five years, I have got my permit to live here permanently, but when I apply for citizenship without any reason being given the Minister tells me that I am not going to get credit for the two years”. That is the kind of practical difficulty that we are up against. I trust the hon. the Minister will reconsider this.
Before this clause is put, I wonder also whether the hon. the Minister will deal with that part of Clause 8 in the Bill, sub-section (b), dealing with people employed on ships, aircraft and other means of transport which are registered in South Africa. At the end of the clause it says “notwithstanding the fact that such ship, aircraft or public means of transport was not registered or licensed in the Union”. The wording seems to be in conflict with the other. Could the hon. Minister give an explanation of that. We do not want to move an amendment because we do not know what to amend as we do not understand the clause, and it is futile to try and move an amendment in respect of a clause that is not understood. I must admit that we are completely foxed over this particular clause. We on this side of the House are well disposed to people who are employed on aircraft or ships or other means of transport where they are registered in the Union, people who are continually going out on their journeys and return to the Union. We accept that they are entitled to claim domicile in the Union in respect of the period they have been so employed, but then we come to the final three or four lines and they refer to ships, aircraft or public means of transport that are not registered or licensed in the Union, and they seem to upset the whole of the previous provision of that particular clause.
I shall now try for the last time to be quite clear on the question of the two years concession. In the first place it must be remembered that this is a concession which is being made under our citizenship laws for the first time. There has never been such a provision before. In the second place we must remember that a South African citizen, whether he was a good citizen or whether he fled or whether he left the country for sound valid reasons, and consequently lost his citizenship, can make application again within a year of his return for the restoration of his citizenship.
We now come to the other person who has been living here in South Africa for a certain time but who has never acquired citizenship. He goes away, for whatever reason. As I have already said, there are people who have left for good reasons and people who have left for bad reasons. Some are fleeing, some have a valid reason. When these people come back and they have lived here for a while again, we give them a maximum credit of two years. I therefore cannot see the unreasonableness of this. No discretion is being applied here, except that such credit will only be given to a person who really deserves it. When he comes here, he can be given a maximum of two years’ credit in respect of his previous period of residence. I cannot see the unreasonableness of this provision, and I cannot see what the difficulty of the hon. member for South Coast (Mr. Mitchell) is. Seeing that this is a new principle which we are introducing, we shall have to see how it works. I think that we are being most liberal in the concession we are making and I really do not see my way clear to granting any extension, and I must stand firm on this point.
It is a pity that the hon. member for South Coast was not here when I replied to the second reading debate in respect of ships and people who qualify for citizenship. When a man has mainly had his domicile on a ship, it is quite clearly provided in the legislation that it must be a ship or a vehicle which is controlled from the Union, or rather from the Republic. In other words, it will not apply to persons serving on the Union Castle Line, if a South African is on such a ship, but only when the office which controls over these people is situated in the Republic. Such a person will then acquire residential qualifications through his journeys, no matter to where they may be, while he is in service as though he was on land. He acquires domicile by being on a ship when it is controlled from the Republic. I think this is quite clear and it does not cause any difficulties. The law is very clear in this regard and I can assure the hon. member that it would be detrimental to a prospective citizen who must earn his living by such means that he is not actually on terra firma. But he cannot be on foreign ships and simply visit a harbour here and then say that he wants South African citizenship
I would like to move the amendment standing in my name—
If one reads the existing clause, it says—
Now the words I intend to insert do not alter the sense of the clause at all. It just gives the Minister a discretion. It will then read—
In other words, I do feel that in cases where mistakes are made for some reason or other in an application, where perhaps somebody has made an error in the period of their residence and therefore does not qualify, there the Minister may not under this clause reconsider the application for another 12 months, and I think this is one case where the Minister should have the discretion. He should have the discretion to be able to reconsider that particular application if some valid reasons for its reconsideration are brought to his notice. The words I want to insert here give the hon. the Minister the right to reconsider such an application in a shorter period should valid reasons come to his notice. If it is a frivolous application, of course he does not have to reconsider it for a period of a year and a new application will have to be submitted. Why should the hon. the Minister not have the right to reconsider a case such as that?
I just want to tell the hon. member that if I were to accept his amendment, every unsuccessful applicant will have the right to reapply immediately, even if only one month has elapsed; then he is rejected once again, but after a month he can then apply once again. It will create an intolerable position. Without having new facts to support his application, he can normally only repeat his application, and I hope I will not be the Minister who will have to deal with all these unsuccessful applications. There are always reasons for rejection, and if the person cannot submit an application supported by new facts, he must be obliged to wait for a certain period.
The hon. Minister overlooks that even if it is discovered that the application was turned down in error, he would be forced to keep this person waiting. So I submit that the amendment moved by the hon. member for Durban (Umlazi) (Mr. H. Lewis) is a reasonable one. It leaves the discretion entirely in the Minister’s hands, but it would enable the Minister to put right an error or misunderstanding which had arisen. Clearly persons would not continue to put in applications if the case had gone against them on merits. I think it would be an improvement if the hon. the Minister would agree to that amendment. I hope that the hon. the Minister too will consider accepting the amendment of the hon. member for South Coast (Mr. Mitchell). In this matter of citizenship, it appears to me that the more we can get to something definite, the better. Here all that is asked for is that there should be a definite period taken into account. The grant of citizenship is still in the discretion of the Minister, and therefore no damage could be done. But it seems strange that the Minister should have to first agree that a certain period can be taken into account, and then the application having been put in, and having decided that question, can simply turn down the application. It would be very much simpler if the hon. the Minister were to exercise his discretion only once, and the end result would be exactly the same.
I have now had the opportunity of looking at the Minister’s amendment together with the clause as it stands, and it appears to me that the Minister’s intepretation is correct, namely that he has the discretion both in respect of returning citizens, and in respect of other applications for citizenship. I think it would be of assistance to the House if the hon. the Minister could place on record the sort of circumstances which he has in mind. It occurs to me that there may be a host of circumstances, but this is a very difficult provision to interpret, it is very difficult to know just when it should be done. The hon. Minister is taking a very heavy onus upon himself, but I take it that cases of this nature will be the subject of very stringent scrutiny, because it is not at all usual to grant citizenship over so short a period. I take it too that the circumstances would have to be very special indeed before the particular cases were considered. I must say that I believe I could find very little wrong if there were a case of an overseas industrialist deciding to throw in his whole future with the Republic, moving his plants to the country and settling here with his wife and children. I believe that that is the type of case. I am not suggesting that that is so, but I think that is the type of exceptional case which at the least would receive very serious consideration. There may be the case of a person who has rendered some very special service to the Republic and who wishes to settle here. But the moving of the amendments by the hon. the Minister does not entirely dispose of the matter. I do hope that the hon. the Minister is not going to insist on the increase of the period. The hon. the Minister has shown by his amendment that he is anxious in proper cases to assist people to get South African citizenship. At the same time the hon. the Minister is moving an amendment in Clause 8, paragraph (a) which substitutes the word “seven” for the word “six”. In other words that is a provision which lengthens the period before a person can apply. But of course there is the reverse position that the period of notice is done away with. I think that is a very wise provision but at the same time it now means that a person can make application after a period, but his application cannot be considered. I wonder if the hon. the Minister would not be prepared to reduce the period. I think that a period of five and six years would be sufficient. The original law was five years for naturalization. And I think experience has shown that it is reasonable and I believe that the experience since 1949 when the present Citizenship Act was passed, has shown that there is no need to have the lengthened periods which were provided for in the 1949 Act. I hope that the hon. the Minister will be prepared to go back at least to the period as it was in the original 1949 Act, a period of five years, which I think is adequate, especially in view of the fact that the hon. the Minister has the final word as to whether citizenship is granted or not. Whether the hon. Minister would be prepared to go as far as asked by the hon. member for East London (North) (Mr. van Ryneveld) I do not know. As he is asking for an extended period, I do not think so. But I do hope he will be prepared to consider very seriously a shortening of the period, where under existing circumstances South Africa is losing citizens on balance. Would it not be a good thing to try and help to build up by reducing the period for registration and naturalization?
The hon. the Minister in replying to me in connection with my amendment on the Order Paper, pointed out that there is not the limitation of two years in my amendment. In re-reading it, I find that that is quite correct—there is two years or one-half of any previous period during which the applicant has been resident here. But the language that the hon. the Minister uses in his own draft of the Bill before us provides a period not exceeding two years and not exceeding one-half of any previous period. In other words in the period of six years. That would then be three afterwards, but it could not be three, because the three is limited by the maximum of two. It could not in any circumstances be more than two. Now I put it to the hon. the Minister as to whether if I redraft my amendment so that it complies with that principle of the limitation to two years, the maximum credit that can be earned by an intending immigrant not being more than two years, notwithstanding what half of his total period of residence may have been, would be acceptable to the Minister?
Then it would not be necessary. My amendment already provides a maximum of two years. I have got the two-year period already.
No, Mr. Chairman, it would get rid of that difficulty in respect of time, but my amendment would still preclude the Minister from exercising discretion when once an intending immigrant has complied with all the numerous provisions of sub-section (1) which I have already read. The intending immigrant having complied with all those regulations, knows then that the maximum credit that he can earn is two years, as of right. Having complied with the various provisions from (a) to (g) of sub-section (1) of Clause 8, he would know that he has earned a maximum of two years credit. It would be his of right. What happens thereafter of course is in the discretion of the Minister and the applicant has got to comply with the law. But if he complies with those provisions of sub-section (1) of Clause 8, he would then have achieved a right to a maximum credit of two years, if I alter my amendment so as to comply with the wording of the Bill as submitted by the Minister. Would the hon. Minister accept it in that case so that the limitation of the credit shall be two years and that there should be no doubt on that score?
In order to get clarity, I want to go over very briefly the points put by the hon. the Minister in regard to the so-called concessions. I would like to put it to the hon. the Minister whether my summary is correct. I am seeking information as I am not sure. Anyone who has been a citizen of South Africa at some time but has left the country and has lost that citizenship, and who thereafter returns to South Africa, may apply after a year. Is that correct?
Yes, that is correct.
Then we leave aside the cases of persons who have lost citizenship and are re-applying for South African citizenship. We come now to new cases— applications by persons who never have had citizenship conferred upon them, either by birth, or by registration, or by naturalization. Now in the first instance the hon. the Minister offers a concession under (3)bis, namely, that where such an applicant has had residence in South Africa prior to his application, he may be allowed one-half of that period of residence, or two years, whichever is the greater, in respect of the period that he has to be here before the application can be considered. At present it is a discretion. The hon. member for South Coast wants to make that a concession as of right. There seems to be a good deal of force in that contention because, as the hon. member for South Coast has pointed out, this is merely a question of time; it is more a technical requirement, a period of residence. If the hon. Minister grants an applicant that concession automatically, the decision whether he will be naturalized or not still rests with the Minister, and is decided on other grounds, on merit, on character and on other considerations. So it seems to me that there is much force in the amendment of the hon. member for South Coast. But I take it, now, that that is a concession?
One-half of a previous period of residence or two years, whichever is the greater.
A maximum of two years.
Yes, Sir. Now I understand that there is a further concession. I deal with the person who has not had previous residence in South Africa, but who comes here and after a year wishes to apply. Now the Minister then, I understand, can grant naturalization to such a person after one year.
he has not to wait for the four-and-a-half years in the case of registration or five-and-a-half years in the case of naturalization? He can apply after one year?
That is correct.
Does that concession also apply in the case of a person who has had previous residence?
So it applies all round. I am glad the hon. the Minister has clarified that. The matter is quite clear now. You have your three classes of cases: The former citizen who returns, can apply after one year; the new applicant for citizenship has to satisfy certain residential requirements, but may be permitted to submit an application after one year; and then the case of a person who has had previous residence, and who gets an allowance for that. He also can apply after a year.
Now I come to the amendment of the hon. member for East London (North) (Mr. van Ryneveld). I think the hon. the Minister should tell us what sort of procedure he proposes should be adopted in cases where this special concession of citizenship is to be granted after one year. Will he, for instance, in announcing the name of person to be naturalized, announce in the Gazette that this concession has been made? Because it is possible that distinctions might be drawn between different applicants which are not fair. I am not suggesting that the hon. the Minister will do so. I am sure the hon. the Minister is anxious to be fair to applicants and that he will deal with every case on its merits. But to give satisfaction in matters of this sort, it must be made clear that every case will be dealt with on its merits; and it seems to me that some sort of procedure—if the hon. the Minister is not going to agree to the amendment of the hon. member for East London (North)—should be adopted, and I think he owes it to this Committee to give us some idea of the sort of procedure that will have to be followed when he decides to make this sort of concession, the sort of announcement he will make in regard to it.
Then I want to deal with the amendment of the hon. member for Durban Umlazi (Mr. H. Lewis) in regard to the renunciation of discretion on the part of the Minister to reconsider an application in less than twelve months after his refusal. I agree with the hon. member for Umlazi. I have had experience in dealing with these matters. And I do hope that the hon. the Minister will think it over, and I do want to urge him to accept that amendment, to leave the door open to be able to reconsider an application in less than twelve months. Of course the point mentioned by the hon. the Minister is a valid one up to a certain stage. If he refuses an application, he may well find that he is bombarded with a further application at once. But it seems to me that that can be regulated administratively.
At 10.25 p.m. the Chairman stated that in accordance with Standing Order No. 26 (1), he would report progress and ask leave to sit again.
Progress reported and leave asked to sit again.
The House adjourned at