African Government meetings

The word `Apartheid' was first used in African Government meetings about race and politics at around 1930. Since then it has come to mean one thing – separation of the races. Apartheid was first introduced when Daniel Malan had won the General election in 1948. In his celebratory speech he had made it clear to the public of South Africa that `Today South Africa belongs to us [Afrikaners] once more'. He had introduced what was to become Apartheid – a separation of black and white people.

In 1950 Malan appointed Professor Tomlinson to chair a commission to advise how Apartheid should work in practice. Tomlinson advised the government that the separation of Blacks and Whites could work, as long as the Government was prepared to pay. He advised that it should split up the land and spend i?? 104 million pounds on improving the farming and industry for the Blacks thus driving them out of white areas. However, the land that was put aside for the Black population was not nearly enough to house and employ. Although the land put aside to

house the Blacks was among the most fertile and well-watered parts of South Africa, it only took up 13% of the area. The Black population however took up 70% of the overall population, not nearly enough land to support all of the Blacks. To make matters worse, the government refused to spend anything like as much as Tomlinson had advised on either farming or employment. The result being that many Black families living on the streets in poverty. The government had to do something about Blacks. Despite the fundamental laws in the Tomlinson report.

The Nationalists passed a few laws which made the first phase of the apartheid, these were called the Baaskap or White supremacy – What followed were a series of acts passed by the Nationalist government between 1948 and 1953. The Population Registration Act was passed because before Apartheid could be put into practice the Government needed to know who was White, who was Black and who was Coloured. To do this the Government set up a register to classify the races. Because of mixed marriages this law was very hard to carry out.

The government was so needy to find out which person belonged to which race that they even invented Crude Tests to find out the true `colour' of a person. For example, the Pencil test was used on people to find out which race they were by sticking a pencil into the persons hair and seeing if it stayed there. If it did, the person was black; if it didn't the person was white. Such tests were despised by the public, Anthony Sampson described how children with a mere trace of coloured blood were expelled from white schools.