Long Walk Original Manuscript (Image #403) - Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory
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Title: Long Walk Original Manuscript (Image #403)
Transcript: members only attended meetings, made speeches, pressed resolutions and waited for the next meeting to repeat the process. Since then a political career became a risk and a gamble when one had little time for family life and nice times. But now the picture changed once more and politics for any active member became highly dangerous and a form of activity reserved only for the hard core. An organisation that for almost half a century had served as our national parliament and fighting for the limited objective of a democratic form of government suddenly found itself in the same position as the CPSA whose objective was far more radical thanits own. I recalled the editorial in "The African Lodestar" a decade before where I had argued that the Suppression of Communism Act was meant not for the CP but for the ANC, and the discussion I had then with Moses Kotane. The polemic was now academic for the reality was that the enemy had used exactly the same weapon against both organisations and the membership of both organisations had come to learn about the dangerous pitfalls of disunity and mud slinging amongst those who face a common enemy.
Joint political activity between an illegal and legal organisation had to put on a new basic. The ANC was not only part of the Congress movement but its most senior member, and the ban on it called for important changes in the structure and co ordinating machinery.
The internal changes were fiercely resisted by a section of the membership that had been brought up in a tradition of legal activities and who held the view that the organisation should go underground intact with its conferences and democratically elected committees. The Women's and the Youth
Extent and Medium: 1 page