Long Walk Original Manuscript (Image #229) - Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory
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Title: Long Walk Original Manuscript (Image #229)
Transcript: I raised the question whether the boycott tactic would be feasable in the new situation where the proposed Territorial Authority would consist only of nominated chiefs, headmen and councillors. Already at the sessions that took place when I was at Mthatha the government officials, with whom the members of the Select Committee were negotiating, insisted on a fully nominated Territorial Authority on the ground, they argued, that elections entailed the risk of agitators being elected and using the Territorial Authority as a platform from which to launch attacks against the government.
Secondly, I argued, we were confronted with a pyramidical structure resembling an iceberg, the base of which was as dangerous, if not more, as the apex on which the liberation movemnt was concentrating all its energies. Beneath the Territorial Authority were the Regional and Tribal Authorities which were entrusted with the actual functions of carrying out the new policy, and all of which would be based very largely on nominated members and making it difficult for the movement to penetrate them. I considered that in some areas elsewhere in the country ANC organisers were attending meetings in the rural areas called to discuss the introduction of Bantu Authorities and had done good work, but I felt that to wreck the whole system we needed more resources, human and financial, and above all, a machinery that would enable us to capture the institutions where we could not destroy them from outside.
The Working Committee did not discuss the report exhaustively but merely noted it and gave tentative comments on certain aspects. One of the most important events of 1955 which was being discussed throughout the country was the publication of the Report of the Commission for the
Extent and Medium: 1 page