Long Walk Original Manuscript (Image #372) - Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory
Welcome to the Nelson Mandela Digital Archive Project. Our aim is to locate, document, digitise, and provide access to all archival materials related to Nelson Mandela. This is a work in progress. Here is a selection of materials arranged in exhibits for your enjoyment.
Title: Long Walk Original Manuscript (Image #372)
Transcript: On the night after the general strike police swooped on homes of government opponents throughout the country and detained about 2,000 people. Units of the army were mobilised and posted in strategic areas. Both ANC and PAC were declared illegal. Many people from the liberation movement fled the country. There was also a flight of capital and the government had to resort to extraordinary measures to control the outflow. All in all South Africa was in turmoil and chaos.
Only a powerful mass campaign could produce such immediate reactions and undermine the confidence of hardened racialists like the Nats in a policy which had helped them to power. With these demonstrations the PAC moved to the front line of battle and blasted away at the enemy with all the determination of men who were hungry for freedom. Sobukwe was praised by the press and individuals inside and outside the country as a man of the future and the "Voice" of Ghana hailed him as a Messiah arisen from amongst the people and who was carrying the cross of freedom to Mount Golgotha.
But if by launching these demonstrations the PAC hoped to eclipse the ANC, events were soon to disillusion them. The ANC held its position as the leading African political organisation and stuck to its programme of activities. With their failure to implement their promise to liberate the people by December 1963 their sort lived popularity vanished. Even before 1960 ran out Prime Minister Verwoerd who had been shot and badly wounded, returned from hospital and rallied his people, including the wavering senior cabinet ministers, back to the beaten track of apartheid and the hope of policy changes that were aroused by speeches of government spokesmen receeded.
Extent and Medium: 1 page