General South African History Timeline: 1920s

July, Industrial and Commercial Workers Union of South Africa (ICU) is established as national Black trade union in Bloemfontein.

11 September, Gerrit Viljoen is born in Cape Town.

1920
The Native Affairs Act
The ANC supports the militant strike by African mineworkers in 1920.
The Black (Native) Affairs Act is Passed. The Native Affairs Act was yet another spin-off of the South African Native Affairs Commissions report of 1905. It paves the way for the creation of a countrywide system of tribally based, but government appointed, district councils modelled on the lines of the Glen Grey Act of 1894. The 1936 Representation of Natives Act extends the principal of separate, communally based political representation for Africans.
Allison Wessels George (A.W.G.) Champion founds the Transvaal Native Mine Clerks Association.
The Bulhoek Massacre takes place outside Queenstown.
Dorothy Shanley is born.
Eduardo Mondlane is born in Manjacaze, Mozambique.
Elmon Malele is born.
Fred Carneson is born.
Gabriel Dichaba is born.
Harry (Mphephethwa) Themba Gwala is born.
Hymie Barsel is born in Barsel.
Jonas Dinous Matlou is born.
Lionel (Rusty) Bernstein is born.
Lorna Peirson is born in Beckenham, London.
Marimuthu (M.P.) Pragalathan Naicker is born in Natal.
Nimrod Sejake is born.
Raymond Mhlaba is born in Mazoka village at Fort Beaufort in the Eastern Cape.
Robert M. Resha is born in Bolotwe, Queenstown.
Job reservation is created by the job colour bar becoming official. The 'Civilized Labour Policy' and the Apprenticeship Act entrenches disadvantage for Africans. Black workers are placed in an inferior position to white workers, and are also to denied certain freedoms.
Albert Luthuli attends the Higher Teachers' Training Course at Adams College on a scholarship and joins the staff upon the successful completion of the course.
40 000 African miners strike on the Reef and in Port Elizabeth 21 people are killed by the police.
Dalidyebo, father of the Tembu Chief Jongintaba Dalindyebo, dies at Silimela. It was this latter chief to whom Henry Mandela entrusted his young son, Nelson Mandela.
February, African mineworkers strike on the Witwatersrand.
February, The Asiatic Inquiry Commission, headed by Sir Johannes Lange, is appointed to inquire into laws concerning the right of Asiatics to trade and acquire fixed property in the Union.
March, Smuts forms government with narrow parliamentary majority.
Native Affairs Act.
12 May, The Asiatic Inquiry Commission, appointed in February 1920 to inquire into laws concerning the right of Asiatics to trade and acquire fixed property in the Union, submits an interim report.
11 July, Hudson William Edison Ntsanwisi is born at the Shiluvane Mission Station in the Letaba District of Limpopo.
23 October, African demonstrators shot in Port Elizabeth.
Transvaal Mine Clerks' Association formed under the leadership of A.W.G. Champion.
December, P.K. Naidoo and others form the Congress Resuscitation Committee (CRC) to resuscitate the Natal Indian Congress (NIC) that had become defunct after a split with Mahatma Gandhi in 1913.
1921
Mary Fitzgerald is the first female City Councillor in Johannesburg.
Josiah Mqebu succeeds Martin Luthuli as Chief of Groutville
Ghananian educator, J. E. G. Gold Aggrey visits South Africa on an endowment mission to study African education. This prompts concerned Whites and members of African middle class to form the Joint Councils of Europeans and Blacks in major South African cities.
Rev. Z. R. Mahabane addresses the Cape branch of the South African Native National Congress (SANNC).
Selby Msimang, founding member of the African National Congress (ANC) and Clements Kadalie, the Malawian founder of the Industrial and Commercial Union (ICU) agree on the formation of Black trade union called the Industrial and Commercial Workers Union of South Africa.
Selby Msimang delivers a speech before the second conference of the Industrial Commercial Workers Union of South Africa in Cape Town.
Florence Mophosho is born in Alexander Township, Johannesburg.
Jo Thorpe is born in Fishoek in Cape Town.
Leslie Massina is born in Pimville, Johannesburg.
Mahomed (Chota) M. Motala is born.
Mpho Keyecwe Motsamai is born.
Thembile Benson Ndimba is born.
February, National elections. Smuts government remains in power with increased parliamentary majority.
19 February, Andries Treurnicht is born on Middelpos farm in Piketberg, Cape Town.
3 March, The Asiatic Inquiry Commission, appointed in February 1920 to inquire into laws concerning the right of Asiatics to trade and acquire fixed property in the Union, concludes its activities and submits its final report. The Commission rejects the grievances of the South African League and proposes a system of voluntary repatriation and segregation of Indians. It also recommends that existing legislation on Indians in the Transvaal be retained, but that new measures be introduced in Natal to prohibit Indians from buying agricultural land in a specified area along the coast.
5 March, Anti-Indian Legislation: The Durban Land Alienation Ordinance , no 14 of 1922 (Natal) This ordinance enables the Durban City Council to exclude Indians from ownership or occupation of property in white areas.
Anti-Indian Legislation: The Township Franchise Ordinance.
The Township Franchise Ordinance is approved by the Provincial Council of Natal to deprive Indians of municipal franchise rights, vetoed by the Union Government.
5 March, The Durban Land Alienation Ordinance, No. 14 of 1921 (Natal), enables the Durban City Council to exclude Indians from the ownership or occupation of property in white areas. The ordinance evokes strenuous opposition.
The Provincial Council of Natal approves the Township Franchise Ordinance, which will deprive Indians of their municipal franchise rights. The Union Government, however, vetoes the ordinance.
The Provincial Council of Natal approves the Rural Dealers Licensing Ordinance, which limits Indian traders right of appeal against the refusal of trading licences by municipal licensing officers.
6 March, The Natal Indian Congress is resuscitated and reorganised at a meeting in Durban. Ismail Gora is elected President.
May, Frustrated White authorities finally resort to the use of force after the Isrealites Millenarian Separatist Sect repeatedly refused to move from outside of Bulhoek in the Cape Province, where they had squatted for over a year. When a reinforced Police Unit is sent with Colonel Theodore Truter, a Police Commissioner, 163 Africans are killed and 129 wounded. The incident became known as the Bulhoek Massacre. Prophet Enoch Migijima, the leader of the Sect, and his two brothers were given a Six-year sentence for leading people in protest against forced removals by White authorities.
The Communist Party of South African (CPSA) is formed in Cape Town.
24 May, Bulhoek Massacre of Israelites takes place near Queenstown when Colonel Theodore Truter, a police commissioner, leads 6 squadrons, a machine gun and an artillery detachment against the Israelite religious sect collected at their annual gathering on the land of their leader and prophet, Enoch Mgijima at Ntabalanga. The slaughter takes 10 minutes and costs 190 lives.
Mgizima and his two brothers are sentenced to 6 years - their crime: the refusal to demolish huts built on crown land and defiance of white authority.
June, Non-European Convention held in Kimberly to protest against the pass laws and the Hertzog Bills, where he proposed the removal of the limited cape Franchise. Dr. Abdurahman of the African People's Organisation (APO) was elected as the chairperson.
20 June, The Imperial Conference begins in London. At the Conference, V.S. Srinivasa Sastri, the Indian representative, puts forward a strong case for the granting of full citizenship rights to Indians in South Africa and other British colonies. The South African Prime Minister, General J.C. Smuts, opposes Sastris resolution that calls for equality and maintains that he cannot grant the franchise to Indians while withholding it from Blacks.
July, The International Socialist League together with other socialist organisations formed the Communist Party.
July, Communist Party of South Africa formed in Cape Town.
John Dube attends the Second Pan-African Congress in London.
J.E.G. Aggrey of Gold Coast visits South Africa.
First European-African Joint Council formed in Johannesburg.
Start of publication of Umteteli wa Bantu, African newspaper linked to the Chamber or Mines.
1 July, Seretse Khama is born at Serowe, Bechuanaland (now Botswana).
21 November, The trial of the accused of the Bulhoek Massacre commences
16 December, The Communist Party (CP) called for a united front in a pass burning campaign on Dingaan's Day.
1922
White miners embark on what has become known as The Rand Rebellion.
The first significant action by women in the rural areas occurs in Hershel. Boycott of stores as a result of price hikes, using passive resistance tactics that had been used earlier in the Free State.
New laws passed which fixes the funding of African education at 1922 levels, with additional funding to come from the Africans themselves. The result is continual under funding.
A South African Indian deputation, supported by Sir Jamshetji Jeejibhoy and other Indian leaders, meets the Viceroy.
Following a crisis between a section of White workers and the chamber of mines on labour issues, miners in the Witwatersrand embark on a strike and it becomes known as the Rand Rebellion. The key issue for the White workers is the replacement of 2000 semi-skilled White labourers by cheap Black labour. Initially Whites were protected by the Colour Bar Act, which advocated job reservation for them. The fall of the Rand after WWI had a heavy financial impact on mine owners leading them to a reduction in costs, especially on labour. Both English-speaking leftwing socialists and Afrikaner Militants use armed action to support their demands. Jan Smuts, Prime Minister of South Africa, instructs the police to use martial law to bring the strike to an end. The miners get the sympathy of the South African Labour Party and National Party (NP), who use them to canvass votes in order to oust Smuts South African Party from power in the 1924 election.
Industrial and Commercial Workerss Union in its meeting in Cape Town condemns the attack on Blacks during the Rand Rebellion and calls upon government to act against the offenders.
Rev. Selope Thema founding member of the South African Native National Congress (SANNC) encourages biracial meetings as they make the organisation more informative.
Transvaal Native Mine Clerks Association hands a memorandum to the Mining Industry Board.
Industrial and Commercial Union (ICU) is renamed the Industrial and Commercial Workers Union of Africa.
Jerry Dibanhlele Khumalo is born.
Greenwood Dumisa Ngotyana is born in the Transkei.
George Edward Peake is born in the Cape.
Mary Goitsemang Ranta is born.
March, Bondelswarts rebellion in South West Africa.
White miners' general strike becomes armed clash between strikers and government.
Clements Kadalie assumes dominant position in national ICU.
First Native Conference held under provisions of Native Affairs Act of 1920.
March, Anti-Indian Legislation: The Natal Provincial Council passes three ordinances.
i) The Rural Dealers' Licensing Ordinance - limited the right of appeal.
ii) The Townships Franchise Ordinance - Indians lose municipal franchise.
iii) The Durban Land Alienation Ordinance - gives the Durban Town Council the right to restrict ownership and occupation of land of any race group.
22 March, The Rand Rebellion is brought to a brutal end by the police.
4 April, Narainsamy Thumbi Naicker is born.
14 October, Rahima Moosa is born in the Strand, Cape Town.
1923
The European-Bantu conference encouraged the ANC to withdraw from direct political action.
The Natives (Urban) Areas Act
Fietas, Johannesburg: The Native Urban Areas Act is passed.
Native (Black) Urban Areas Act No 21:
Made each local authority responsible for the blacks in its area. 'Native advisory boards' regulated influx control and removed 'surplus' people, i.e. those who were not employed in the area. The country was divided into prescribed (urban) and non- prescribed areas, movement between the two being strictly controlled (Horrell 1978: 2-3). This Act was consolidated by the 1945 Blacks (Urban Areas) Consolidation Act.
Assent gained: 14 June 1923; commencement date not found.
Repealed by the Blacks (Urban Areas) Consolidation Act No 25 of 1945
Anti-Indian Legislation: The Class Areas Bill.
Minister of Interior, Sir Patrick Duncan, introduces Class Areas Bill, which proposes compulsory residential and trading segregation for Indians throughout South Africa.
Anti-Indian Legislation: Boroughs Ordinance no 189 of 1924
This Bill effectively disenfranchises Indians in Natal. They lose vote in boroughs.
Anti-Indian Legislation: Industrial Conciliation Act.
This Act provides for Job reservation.
South African Labour Party and National Party sign a Pact agreement. They agree to form a Pact government should they win the 1924 elections under General Barry Hertzog.
The Natives (Urban Areas) Act legislated on a broad front to regulate the presence of Africans in the urban areas. It was only intermittently applied until the end of the 1940s.The African National Congress (ANC) through its newspaper Abantubantu makes it known that it opposes the Act as it promotes and strengthens segregation
The South African Native National Party (SANNC) changes its name to the African National Congress (ANC).
James Thaele, a self-styled professor of Cape Town, in the first conference of Black Affairs, under the sponsorship of the Dutch Reformed Church, calls for Independent African Action.
Thembekile Enoch KaTshunungwa, a member of the Tembu Royal House is born in the Transkei.
Wilton Z. Mkwayi is born in Middledrift in the Cape.
Hassen (Ike) M. Moosa is born.
P. Ntsangani is born in Eastern Cape.
Reginald September is born in Cape Town.
Mbuyiselo Stanley Vanqa is born.
Diamond Bozas is born in Isipingo.
April, Nationalist Party and South African Labour Party conclude electoral pact to challenge Smuts government.
Start of publication of Workers' Herald, newspaper of the ICU.
31 May, The Mayor of Durban, Walter Gilbert J.P., officially opens the third national conference of Indian organisations in the Durban Town Hall. The Conference formally decides to establish the South African Indian Congress (SAIC) and Omar Hajee Amod Jhaveri is elected its first President.
1 June - 3 June, The third national conference of Indian organisations continues at Parsee Rustomjee Hall in Queen Street, Durban. The Conference draws up and adopts the constitution and standing orders of the newly established South African Indian Congress.
September, First European-African Conference sponsored by the Dutch Reformed Church.
Natives (Urban Areas) Act.
29 October, James John Hadebe is born in Frankfort, Free State.
1924
Premiership of General Hertzog.
Rev. Z.R. Mahabane is elected President-General of the ANC
Industrial Conciliation Act.
Anti-Indian Legislation: The Township Franchise Ordinance, Natal.
This Ordinance deprived Indians of municipal franchise.
Anti-Indian Legislation: The Rural Dealers Ordinance, Natal.
This Ordinance attempts to cripple Indian trade.
Anti-Indian Legislation: The Durban Land Alienation Ordinance, Natal.
This Ordinance prevented Indian ownership of land in white areas.
The Boroughs Ordinance, Ordinance No. 189 of 1924 effectively disenfranchises Indians in Natal. The South African Indian Congress threatens passive resistance.
Colonel F.H.P Creswell of the South African Labour Party is appointed Minister of Labour in the Pact government.
The Industrial and Commercial Union (ICU) is rigged by internal struggle over its relationship with the Communist Party of South Africa (CPSA).
Dennis Brutus is born in Rhodesia.
D. Fuyani is born.
Nadime Gordimer is born in Springs.
Alfred (Tough) Hutchinson is born in Hectorspruit district, Eastern Transvaal.
Elias Motsoaledi is born in Sekhukhuniland.
Ahmed Ebrahim Patel is born.
Abraham Barnett Koatlhao Secchoareng is born.
Robert Mangaliso Sobukwe is born in Graaff-Reinet in the Cape Province.
Introduction of Industrial Conciliation Act.
January, The Minister of the Interior, Sir Patrick Duncan, introduces the Class Areas Bill, which proposes compulsory residential and trading segregation for Indians throughout South Africa.
January, The Minister of the Interior, Sir Patrick Duncan, introduces the Class Areas Bill, which proposes compulsory residential and trading segregation for Indians throughout South Africa.
27 January, The Natal Indian Congress and the Natal Indian Association jointly organises a mass meeting in Durban in opposition to the Class Areas Bill. The mass meeting is attended by 3000 Indians.
8 February, Imam Abdullah Haron is born Newlands-Claremont.
15 February, A deputation for the South African Indian Congress (SAIC) meets with the Minister of the Interior, Sir Patrick Duncan, and presents him with a memorandum setting out their objections concerning the Class Areas Bill.
April, After an invitation from the Natal Indian Congress (NIC), Mrs. Sarojini Naidu, a celebrated poetess from India, returns to South Africa from a visit to Kenya. She addresses scores of meetings and puts forward the case of the South African Indian Congress (SAIC) concerning the Class Areas Bill in interviews with the Prime Minister, General J.C. Smuts, the Minister of the Interior, Sir Patrick Duncan, the leaders of the Opposition and other prominent members of Parliament. She is also present in Parliament during its discussions of the Bill. The Government later decides not to pursue the Bill pending the general elections to be held in June.
April, After an invitation from the Natal Indian Congress (NIC), Mrs. Sarojini Naidus, a celebrated poetess from India, returns to South Africa from a visit to Kenya. She addresses scores of meetings and puts forward the case of the South African Indian Congress (SAIC) concerning the Class Areas Bill in interviews with the Prime Minister, General Jan Smuts, the Minister of the Interior, Sir Patrick Duncan, the leaders of the Opposition and other prominent members of Parliament. She is also present in Parliament during its discussions of the Bill. The Government later decides not to pursue the Bill pending the general elections to be held in June.
8 April, Industrial Conciliation Act No 11:
Provided for job reservation. Excluded blacks from membership of registered trade unions, prohibited registration of black trade unions.
Commenced: 8 April 1924
Repealed by s 86 of the Industrial Conciliation Act No 36 of 1937
8 April, The Industrial Conciliation Act, Act No. 11 of 1924, provides for job reservation.
21 April - 25 April, The South African Indian Congress (SAIC) convenes an emergency conference in Durban. In a resolution adopted by the Conference, the SAIC approves Mrs Sarojini Naidus suggestion that a Round-table Conference be held between delegates from the SAIC, the Union Government and the Indian Government.
21 April - 25 April, The South African Indian Congress (SAIC) convenes an emergency conference in Durban. In a resolution adopted by the Conference, the SAIC approves Mrs Sarojini Naidus suggestion that a Round-table Conference be held between delegates from the SAIC, the Union Government and the Indian Government.
28 April, Kenneth David Kaunda is born.
May, Rev. Z. R. Mahabane elected president of the African National Congress.
June, National elections. Nationalist Party-South African Labour Party win parliamentary majority. General Hertzog becomes prime minister.
17 June, The Pact coalition between the National Party and Labour Party wins the national election and General J.B.M. Hertzog becomes Prime Minister.
1925
The Pact government comes to power, under Jan Smuts and Barry Hertzog.
The Bill of rights is adopted at the National conference.
The new name: African National Congress (ANC) is adopted, replacing the old South African native National Congress (SANNC)
Wage Act.
Attempt to extend pass laws to African women blocked by court decision in suit instigated by African National Congress.
ICU headquarters shifted from Cape Town to Johannesburg.
Anti-Indian Legislation: Transvaal Dealers (Control) Ordinance 11/1925.
This ordinance puts obstacles in the way of obtaining licences. Aim to restrict Indian trade.
Anti-Indian Legislation: Minimum Wages Act.
This Act leads to a form of job reservation and promotes white employment. Certain trades are earmarked for whites.
Anti-Indian Legislation: Class Areas Bill.
This Bill is designed for mere segregation.
The Transvaal Dealers (Control) Ordinance, Ordinance No. 11 of 1925, aims to restrict Indian trade by placing further obstacles in the way of obtaining licences.
The Minimum Wages Act leads to a form of job reservation and promotes White employment by earmarking certain trades for Whites.
The Wage Act is Passed. The Act gives the Pact government the power to determine wage rates within specific industries.
Alex La Guma is born in Cape Town.
Stanley B. Lollan is born.
Patrick Mosell Molaoa is born in Johannesburg.
Ruth Mompati is born in Vryburg, North-West Province.
Obed Motshabi is born.
John K. Nkadimeng is born in Sekhukhuniland, Eastern Transvaal.
A.B. Nogaya is born.
Tamsanqa Tasque Tshume is born in Port Elizabeth.
Harold Strachan is born.
25 January, Sir Dinshaw Petit and Sir Purushottamdas Thakurdas head a deputation to the Viceroy of India to press for a round-table conference with South Africa.
14 March, Heloise Ruth First is born.
8 April, The Indian Government sends a telegram to the Union Government to suggest round-table conference. In his reply to the telegram, the Union Governor General states that the conference must acknowledge repatriation as fundamental to the discussions.
8 April, The Indian Government sends a telegram to the Union Government to suggest a round-table conference. In his reply to the telegram, the Union Governor General states that the conference must acknowledge repatriation as fundamental to the discussions.
14 April, Collins Wells Englin is born in Sea Point, Cape Town.
16 June, The Union Government rejects a round-table conference with India on the grounds that it will constitute interference in South African affairs.
2 July, Patrice Lumumba is born in Kasai, in the Northern Province of Katanga.
23 July, Anti-Indian Legislation: The Areas Reservation and Immigration and Registration (Further Provision) Bill
Dr. D. F. Malan, Minister of the Interior, introduces Areas Reservation and Immigration and Registration (Further Provision) Bill in Parliament. It defines Indians as aliens and recommends limitation of population through repatriation.
23 July, Dr. D. F. Malan, Minister of the Interior, introduces the Areas Reservation and Immigration and Registration (Further Provision) Bill in Parliament. The Bill is more stringent than the Class Areas Bill of the previous year whereas the Class Areas Bill was designed for the purposes of enforcing mere segregation, the Areas Reservation Bill defines Indians as aliens and recommends the limitation of the Indian population through repatriation.
23 July, Daniel Francois (D. F.) Malan, Minister of the Interior, introduces the Areas Reservation and Immigration and Registration (Further Provision) Bill in Parliament. The Bill is more stringent than the Class Areas Bill of the previous year, whereas the Class Areas Bill was designed for the purposes of enforcing mere segregation, the Areas Reservation Bill defines Indians as aliens and recommends the limitation of the Indian population through repatriation.
31 August
The Natal Indian Congress (NIC) holds a mass meeting in Durban in protest against the proposed Areas Reservation and Immigration and Registration (Further Provision) Bill. Anglia and J.K. Roberts call for a round-table meeting of Indian organisations, but the resolution is opposed.
31 August
The Natal Indian Congress (NIC) holds a mass meeting in Durban in protest against the proposed Areas Reservation and Immigration and Registration (Further Provision) Bill. Anglia and J.K. Roberts call for a round-table meeting of Indian organisations, but the resolution is opposed.
19 September, Liz Abrahams is born in Paarl.
24 September, In a communiqu to the Indian Government, the Union Government again declares that there is no need for a round-table conference and that the two Governments need only to discuss the repatriation of South African Indians.
9 November - 12 November, The fifth Conference of the South African Indian Congress (SAIC) in Cape Town rejects the Areas Reservation and Immigration and Registration (Further Provision) Bill and calls for a round-table conference to be held between the Governments of India and South Africa and representatives of the SAIC. The Conference also adopts a resolution that a deputation be sent to India.
13 November, General Hertzog outlines his "solution" for the 'Native Question' at Smithfield.
Afrikaans recognised as an official language.
13 November, General Barry Hertzog presents his Smithfield speech in the Orange Free State, where he presents proposals regarding the Coloured Persons Rights Bill.
16 November, Advocate J.W. Godfrey leads the South African Indian Congress (SAIC) deputation to the Minister of Interior, Dr D.F. Malan, to put forward the case of the Indian community with regards to the Areas Reservation and Immigration and Registration (Further Provision) Bill. The deputation urges the Minister to agree to a round-table conference between the Governments of India and South Africa.
16 November, Advocate J.W. Godfrey leads the South African Indian Congress (SAIC) deputation to the Minister of Interior, Daniel Francois (D.F.) Malan, to put forward the case of the Indian community with regards to the Areas Reservation and Immigration and Registration (Further Provision) Bill. The deputation urges the Minister to agree to a round-table conference between the Governments of India and South Africa.
23 November, 0A deputation of the South African Indian Congress (SAIC) leaves for India to lobby the Indian Government about the issues of the Areas Reservation and Immigration and Registration (Further Provision) Bill and a round-table conference between the Governments of India and South Africa.
December, The Paddison deputation, led by the Commissioner of Labour in Madras, G.F. Paddison, arrives in South Africa. The other members of the deputation are the Hon. Syed Raza Ali, G.S. Bajpai, C.S Ricketts and Sir Deva Prasad Sarvadhikary. The aim of the deputation is to study the general position and economic conditions of the Indians in South Africa. This delegation paves way for the first Round-table Conference.
19 December, The South African Indian Congress (SAIC) delegation, led by Dr A. Abdurahman (President of the African Peoples Organisation, APO, but now involved with the plight of the Indians), meets with the Viceroy of India. The other members of the delegation are: Amod Bayat, J. W. Godfrey, Pandit Bhawani Dayal, V. S. C. Pather, Sorabjee Rustomjee and A. A. Mirza.
26 December, The South African Indian Congress (SAIC) deputation attends 40th session of All-India Congress (also referred to as the India National Congress) at Cawnpore, India. Sarojini Naidu, President of the Indian National Congress, links the problems of South African Indians with India's subjection to foreign rule and calls for the freedom of India.
1926
Prime Minister General Barry Hertzog introduces a Bill to eject Africans from the political system.
Anti-Indian Legislation: The Mines and Works Amendments Act (Colour Bar Act) 25/1926.
This Act provides certificates of competency for skilled work, Indian workers are excluded.
Anti-Indian Legislation: The Liquor Bill, Sections 107 and 144
Indians and Africans could not be employed by licence holders and were not allowed on licensed premises and liquor supply vehicles. 3000 Indians employed in the brewery trade are affected.
Anti-Indian Legislation: The Local Government (Provincial Powers) Act.
This Act denies citizenship rights to Indians.
The Mines and Works Amendment Act , Act No. 25 of 1926 (Colour Bar Act), provides certificates of competency for skilled work, but Indian workers are excluded. Because of the differential treatment instituted as a result of this and other discriminatory Acts, Indian workers feel that separate Indian and Coloured Unions would best serve their needs, especially as white Trade Unions refuse to admit Indian members who want to fully benefit of Industrial Conciliation Act. i.e. representation on Industrial councils and Conciliation Boards.
In terms of the proposed Liquor Bill, Sections 107 and 144, Indians and Africans cannot be employed by licence holders and are not allowed on licensed premises or to drive in liquor supply vehicles. 3000 Indians employed in the brewery trade are affected.
Jongilizwe, brother of the Tembu Chief Jongintaba Dalindyebo, dies. It was this latter chief to whom Henry Mandela entrusted his young son, Nelson Mandela.
The Mines and Works Amendment Act is passed.The Act firmly establishes the principle of the Colour Bar in certain mining jobs.
The African National Congress (ANC) plans a nation wide campaign after the publication of the Black Native Bills in alliance with the Industrial Commercial Union (ICU). Leaders of the two organisations back away from the endorsement and the campaign fails to take off.
The Mines and Works Act no 25 of 1926:This Act, also called the Colour Bar Act, is supposedly designed to counteract the force of economic advantages enjoyed by natives as stated by the governments Mining Regulations Commission. The 1926 legislation is a reflection on the belief by most whites, especially those in the labour market, that it represented unfair competition and that the welfare of Whites would suffer significantly if Blacks were not legislated out of the market. The law strengthened the barriers against non-White advancement provided in the 1911 Act.
Ethel de Keyser is born.
Balelekeng Sam Masemola is born.
John A. Mavuso is born.
Elliot Nzimeni Mfaxa is born at Stutterheim in the Eastern Cape.
Cecil Skotnes born in East London.
Joe Slovo is born in Lithuania.
Joseph Mpoza is born.
Kesval Moonsamy is born.
Maniben Sita is born in the Asiatic bazaar (Marabastad).
Michael Gagashe Zondi is born in Mtulwa, Greytown district of KZN.
Rexon Mathebula is born.
30 January, Prime Minister, Gen. J.B.M. Hertzog and the Minister of the Interior, Dr D.F. Malan, meet with the Paddington delegation after a great deal of pressure from the British government. The meeting results in the decision that a Select Committee will be set up to enable the Paddison deputation to argue on the principle of Areas Reservation Bill. The deputation also succeeds in getting the Union Government to agree to a round-table conference.
30 January, Prime Minister, General Barry Hertzog and the Minister of the Interior, Daniel Francois (D.F.) Malan, meet with the Paddington delegation after a great deal of pressure from the British government. The meeting results in the decision that a Select Committee will be set up to enable the Paddington deputation to argue on the principle of the Areas Reservation Bill. The deputation also succeeds in getting the Union Government to agree to a round-table conference.
February, The South African Indian Congress (SAIC) deputation to India returns to South Africa.
17 February, The South African Government agrees to round-table conference with the Government of India provided discussion is restricted to repatriation of Indians. The conference is to be held at the end of 1926. It is further agreed that a South African Government deputation will visit India before the conference.
23 February, The South African Indian Congress (SAIC) calls for a national day of prayer (hartal), strikes and the closure of shops in opposition to various pieces of proposed anti-Indian legislation. The South African Indian community heeds this call on national scale.
April, South African Trade Union Congress formed.
May, Mines and Works Amendment Act (`Colour Bar' Act)
6 May, Andrew Mokete Mlangeni is born Prospect township in Soweto.
31 May, Indian Government invites a delegation from the South African Government to visit India in an attempt to foster closer mutual cooperation.
19 September, A South African Government delegation, led by F. W. Beyers, the Minister of Mines and Industry, in the Hertzog Government, and Patrick Duncan, the Minister of the Interior in the previous Smuts Government, arrives in India.
30 September, Immorality Act No 5:
Extra-marital intercourse between whites and blacks prohibited (Horrell 1978: 8).(Extended in 1950 to include coloureds and Asians.)
Commenced: 30 September 1927
Repealed by s 23 of Sexual Offences Act No 23 of 1957.
30 September, Immorality Act No 5:Extra-marital intercourse between whites and blacks prohibited (Horrell 1978: 8). (Extended in 1950 to include coloureds and Asians.)Commences: 30 September 1927Repeals by section 23 of Sexual Offences Act No 23 of 1957.
October, General J.B.M. Hertzog, South African Prime Minister, attends the Imperial Conference in London. The Conference focuses on the clarification of the dominions status within the British Empire and its activities result in the Balfour Declaration.
19 November, Following the Imperial Conference held in London in October, Lord Balfour, the former British Prime Minister, announces the Balfour Declaration, in which the status of the dominions in the British Empire is clarified as follows: [Britain and her dominions] are autonomous Communities within the British Empire, equal in status, in no way subordinate one to another in any aspect of their domestic or external affairs, though united by a common allegiance to the Crown and freely associated as members of the British Commonwealth of Nations.
December, Communists expelled from ICU.
Kadalie defies order forbidding him entry into Natal.
Balfour Declaration defines relations of Great Britain and the Dominions.
6 December - 7 December, The South African Indian Congress holds an Emergency Conference.
17 December, Representatives of the South African and Indian Governments meet for a round-table conference in Cape Town. The Conference leads to the conclusion of the Cape Town Agreement between South Africa and India. In terms of the agreement, the Indian population of South Africa shall be limited through assisted emigration; the entry of naturalised Indians wives and minor children will be facilitated in accordance with paragraph 3 of the Reciprocity Resolution; and the South African Government commits itself to the upliftment of Indian Community in South Africa. It is also decided that Agents of the Government of India will be appointed to represent India in South Africa. The conference is concluded on the 12th of January 1927
1927
J.T. Gumede is elected President of the ANC.
James La Guma is sent to Brussels by the SACP.
Walter Sisulu leaves school at the age of 15 and shortly afterwards Sisulu goes to Johannesburg where he attended various educational organisations. Sisulu, later became secretary of the "Orlando Brotherly Society", a Xhosa organisation, which prompted an interest in tribal history and encouraged economic independence from whites.
Immorality Act.
Native Administration Act.
First Communist-sponsored African trade union formed.
Joan Morice becomes South Africa's first qualified Veterinarian
Albert Luthuli marries fellow Adam's College teacher Nokukhanya ('The Bright One') Bhengu, the granddaughter of a hereditary Zulu Chief.
The Native Administration Bill is passed. However, the Pact government fails to have the Native Bills, which is meant to regulate African Affairs, passed.
Josiah Tshangana Gumede of Natal branch of the African National Congress (ANC) and a member of the ANC delegation to London in 1919 is elected president of the organisation.
Josiah Tshangana Gumede attends a communist-sponsored conference in Brussels of oppressed nationalities, and travel to Soviet Union and indicates his desire of cooperation with the communists in joint efforts to influence the government, including mass demonstrations.
Clements Kadalie attempts tore organise the Industrial and Commercial Union (ICU) along the lines of Britain trade union.
The National and Flag Act of 1927This Act does not recognise Indians as South African Nationals.
Ben Turok is born in Latvia.
Joseph Morolong is born in Northern Cape.
Julius Phumelela Busa is born.
Lionel Forman is born in Rossettenville.
Lungile Kepe is born.
Philemon (Duma) Pearce Dumasile Nokwe is born.
12 January, The Cape Town Agreement is signed on the last day of a round-table conference of representatives of the South African and Indian Governments. The South African Minister of the Interior, Dr D.F. Malan withdraws the Areas Reservation Bill, while the Government of India agrees to the policy of voluntary repatriation.
27 January, The Natal Indian Congress (NIC) and the Natal Indian Association jointly organise a mass meeting in Durban in opposition to the Class Areas Bill. The mass meeting is attended by 3000 Indians.
February, Second (and last) European-African Conference sponsored by the Dutch Reformed Church.
21 February, The Cape Town Agreement is published and a joint communique on the Cape Town round-table conference is issued by the South African and Indian Governments.
12 March - 13 March, The seventh annual Conference of the South African Indian Congress (SAIC) is held in Johannesburg to discuss the Cape Town Agreement signed by South Africa and India in February. The SAIC accepts the agreement. Transvaal delegates also try unsuccessfully to get a decision from the Conference to move the SAIC headquarters to Johannesburg.
April, The Immigration and Indian Relief (Further Provision) Bill of 1927 The Minister of Interior, Dr. Daniel Francois (D.F.) Malan, introduces Immigration and Indian Relief (Further Provision) Bill, which follows closely on the Round Table Conference between India and South Africa. It requires children of South African Indian parents, born outside the Union to enter the country within three months of birth. In addition South Africans who absent themselves for three continuous years from the country forfeit domicile rights, and Indians who have entered the country illegally (mostly at the time of the South African War) condoned and issued with condonation certificates. Families of condonees are not allowed to join them. The Act also establishes a scheme of voluntary repatriation of South African Indians to India. Indian Government complies. Repatriates to receive bonuses of 20 per adult and £10 per child, plus free passages. Bonus doubled in 1931, and finally abolished in 1955 when it becomes apparent that only the old, intending to retire in India, take advantage of it.
12 April, In an article published in The Star, The Minister of the Interior, Dr D.F. Malan presents the Cape Town Agreement as an agreement between South Africa and India to repatriate Indians.
27 April, Anti-Indian Legislation: The Immigration and Indian Relief (Further Provision) Bill
Minister of Interior, Dr Malan, introduces Immigration and Indian Relief Further Provision) Bill, which follows closely on Round Table Conference between India and South Africa.It requires children of South African Indian parents, born outside the Union to enter the country within three months of birth.In addition South Africans who absent themselves for three continuous years from the country forfeit domicile rights, and Indians who have entered the country illegally (mostly at the time of the Anglo-Boer War) condoned and issued with condonation certificates. Families of condonees are not allowed to join them. The Act also establishes a scheme of voluntary repatriation of South African Indians to India. Indian Government complies. Repatriates to receive bonuses of £20 per adult and £10 per child, plus free passages. Bonus doubled in 1931, and finally abolished in 1955 when it becomes apparent that only the old, intending to retire in India, take advantage of it.
27 April, The Minister of the Interior, Dr D.F. Malan, introduces the Immigration and Indian Relief (Further Provision) Bill in Parliament. The introduction of the Bill follows closely on Round-table Conference between India and South Africa and has as its aim to provide legal guidelines for the implementation of the Cape Town Agreement. The Bill requires children of South African Indian parents, born outside the Union, to enter the country within three months of birth. In addition, South African Indians who absent themselves for three continuous years from the country forfeit their rights of domicile, while Indians who have entered the country illegally (mostly at the time of the Anglo-Boer War) will be condoned and issued with condonation certificates. However, families of condonees will not be allowed to join them. The Act also establishes a scheme of voluntary repatriation of South African Indians to India with the compliance of the Indian Government. Repatriates are to receive bonuses of 20 per adult and £10 per child, plus free passage to India. This bonus is doubled in 1931 and finally abolished in 1955 when it becomes apparent that only the old, who intend to retire in India, are taking advantage of it.
8 May, The Transvaal British Indian Association (TBIA), dominated by Muslim merchants, secedes from the South African Indian Congress (SAIC). The TBIA feels that the SAIC, dominated by representatives of the Natal Indian Congress, does not pay sufficient attention to the problems experienced by Transvaal Indians.
10 May, The Natal Provincial Council passes a motion against the Cape Town Agreement over fears that existing licensing legislation will be relaxed.
27 May, V.S.S. Sastri is appointed as the first Agent of the Government of India in South Africa.
The South African Indian Congress (SAIC) sends a deputation to the Minister of the Interior, Dr D.F. Malan, to protest against Section 5 of the Immigration and Indian Relief (Further Provision) Bill. This section empowers Immigration Officers and Boards to cancel registration certificates and certificates of domicile. After further pressure by V.S.S. Sastri, the Indian Agent in South Africa, Malan, does not put Section 5 into effect.
June - November, Clements Kadalie visits Europe.
June, First Non-European Conference meets in Bloemfontein under the leadership of Dr. Abdullah Abdurahman
Gumede elected president of the African National Congress.
Gumede travels to Europe and the Soviet Union.
10 June, Mizream Maseko is (also documented as Mizraim, Mizriam, Mizram) is born.
23 June, Anti-Indian Legislation: The Asiatics in the Northern Districts Act.
Transvaal laws are to be applied to Indians in Utrecht, Vryheid, and Paulpietersburg. Restrictions placed on land purchase, trade and residence rights.
Anti-Indian Legislation: The Liquor Act
Africans and Indians are denied employment by license holders and are not allowed to serve liquor and drive liquor vans. They are also denied access to licensed premises.
Anti-Indian Legislation: The Women's Franchise Bill
No Indian women are allowed to vote.
Anti-Indian Legislation: The Riotous Assembly Act
Any Indians are considered dangerous agitators subject to deportation.
23 June, Dr. A. Abdurahman, leader of the African Peoples Organisation (APO), organises a Non-European Conference in Kimberley to protest against the so-called Hertzog Bills that aims to further segregation and are to be tabled in Parliament later. At Abdurahmans invitation, the South African Indian Congress (SAIC) sends a delegation led by V. Lawrence. The delegation, however, declares that the SAIC cannot be bound by resolutions adopted at the Conference, because of the delicate position of Indians following the Cape Town Agreement and the appointment of an Indian Agent.
23 June, The Asiatics in the Northern Districts Act of 1927 determines that Transvaal laws will be applied to Indians in Utrecht, Vryheid and Paulpietersburg. Restrictions are placed on the purchase of land by Indians, as well as their trade and residence rights.
23 June, Dr. Abdullah Abdurahman, leader of the African Peoples Organisation (APO), organises a Non-European Conference in Kimberley to protest against the so-called Hertzog Bills that aim to further segregation and are to be tabled in Parliament. At Abdurahmans invitation, the South African Indian Congress (SAIC) sends a delegation led by V. Lawrence. The delegation, however, declares that the SAIC cannot be bound by resolutions adopted at the Conference, because of the delicate position of Indians following the Cape Town Agreement and the appointment of an Indian Agent.
29 June, The first Agent of the Government of India, the Right Hon. V.S. Srinivasa Sastriarrives in South Africa.
5 July, Anti-Indian Legislation: The Immigration and Indian Relief (Further) Provision: Act 37/1927.
This Bill becomes law and the scheme of assisted emigration comes into operation.
(Repatriation: 1927 1655 Indians repatriated; 1928 3477 repatriated; 1929 1314 repatriated)
Anti-Indian Legislation: Nationality and Flag Act
Nationality and Flag Act denies Indians right to become citizens by naturalization.
5 July, The Immigration and Indian Relief (Further) Provision Bill becomes law as the Immigration and Indian Relief (Further) Provision Act, Act No. 37 of 1927 and the scheme of the assisted emigration of Indians comes into operation
1 September, Black (Native) Administration Act No 38:
Section 5(1)(b) provided that 'whenever he deemed it expedient in the public interest,the minister might, without prior notice to any persons concerned, order any tribe, portion thereof, or individual black person, to move from one place to another within the Republic of South Africa' (Horrell 1978: 204). Section 29(1) prohibited the fomenting of feelings of hostility between blacks and whites. Amended by s 4 of the Black Laws Further Amendment Act No 79 of 1957. This was extended to all racial groups in terms of s 1 of the 1974 Second General Law Amendment Act (see below). 'All the reported cases concern charges of inciting hostility among blacks towards the white section of the community' rather than cases of whites who cause feelings of racial hostility by racially abusive comments (Dugard 1978: 178). Used extensively to carry out forced removals. Later amended by the 1973 Bantu (Black) Laws Amendment Act.
Commenced: 1 September 1927, except ss 22, 23 & 36: 1 January 1929. Sections 5(1)-(5) repealed by the Abolition of Influx Control Act No 68 of 1986; repealed in full by the Abolition of Restrictions on Free Political Activity Act No 206 of 1993
October, The Nationality and Flag Act denies Indians the right to become South African citizens by naturalisation.
12 October, The Indian Agent in South Africa, V.S.S. Sastri, addresses a public meeting in Johannesburg to explain Section 5, concerning the entry of minor Indian children into the Transvaal, of the Immigration and Indian Relief (Further) Provision Act, Act No. 37 of 1927.
17 November, Thanks to the efforts of the Indian Agent in South Africa, V.S.S. Sastri and C.F. Andrews, the Natal Commission for Indian Education is appointed.
18 December, Dissidents from the Transvaal British Indian Association (TBIA) (encouraged by the Indian Agent, V.S. Srinivasa Sastri) establish the Transvaal Indian Congress (TIC). The TIC affiliates with the South African Indian Congress (SAIC) at the annual conference of SAIC in January 1928.
1928
The Durban Beer Protests occur in opposition to liquor acts that extend the scope of police raids on the brewers, usually women.
Communist Party adopts a plan for a "Native Republic".
The ANC organises workers in Cape rural areas.
Josie Palmer active in campaign against residential permits.
Albert Luthuli is elected Secretary of the African Teachers' Association under the presidency of his friend Z.K. Matthews, principal of Adam's College
The Communist Party of South Africa (CPSA) receives orders from Moscow to endorse an Independent Black Republic as a stage towards a workers and peasants republic. Josiah Tshangana Gumede supports the motion and this provoke the African National Congress (ANC).
Allison Wessels George (A.W.G.) Champion is suspended from the Industrial and Commercial Union (ICU) following financial mismanagement.
Allison Wessels George (A.W.G.) Champion is elected president of a separatist Industrial and Commercial Union (ICU) Yase Natal.
William Ballinger arrives from Britain as advisor to the Industrial and Commercial Union (ICU).
Winston Z. Conco is born.
Suliman Esakjee is born.
Joe Gqabi is born.
Christina Jasson is born.
Henry (Squire) George Makgothi is born.
Kate Molale is born.
Leslie Sonny Thusbo Monnanyane is born.
Temba D. A. Mqota is born.
Cleopus Sibande is born in Benoni.
Archibald Sibeko is born in Alice in the Cape.
Regina Buthelezi is born.
Barrymore Maritz is born in Pietermaritzburg.
January, South African Trade Union Congress rejects application of ICU for affiliation.
Natal branch of ICU secedes. ICU yase Natal formed under leadership of A.W.G. Champion.
2 January, Anti-Indian Legislation: The Liquor Bill
Section 104 of the Liquor Bill, prohibiting Indians from entering licensed premises, is withdrawn.
2 January - 5 January, The affiliation of the Transvaal Indian Congress (TIC) to the South African Indian Congress (SAIC) is accepted at the SAICs annual conference.
5 January, Phyllis Ruth David is born in Estcourt.
5 January, Phyllis Naidoo is born in Estcourt.
February, Section 104 of the Liquor Bill of 1927 is withdrawn. If implemented, this section would have prohibited Indians from being employed on any licensed premises.
25 March, The South African Federation of Non-European Trade Unions is formed.
The Natal Indian Congress (NIC) and the South African Indian Congress (SAIC) help establish several Indian trade unions and bring them together in a Natal Workers Congress with NIC officials in key positions.
30 April, Josiah Gumede is succeeded by Pixley ka Isaka Seme as African National Congress president. Luthuli commented later: "with his ascendancy, the African National Congress shifted several degrees rightwards into almost total moribundancy."
27 August
Mangosuthu Gatsha Buthelezi is born.
28 August
Fatima Meer is born in Grey Street, Durban.
19 September, The Minister of Public Health appoints the executive committee of the Central Housing Board to enquire into the sanitary and housing conditions of Indians in and around Durban. The Committee becomes known as the Thornton Committee after its chairman, Sir Edward N. Thornton.
11 October, Zacharias Johannes de Beer is born.
26 December, Derrick John McBride, Robert McBride's father, is born in his parent's home in Rockey Street, Johannesburg. He is the darkest complexioned middle child in a Coloured family of 4 boys and 1 girl. His mother made obvious her dislike of him because of his darkness, and from the age of 8 he alone was made to do all the domestic work when there was no maid. His bitterness toward his mother prevents him from attending her funeral in 1983.
He suffers childhood taunts and disadvantage because of his colour, and grows to hate Whites. He becomes politically aware from a young age and later develops a drinking problem.
28 December - 30 December, At a conference held in Johannesburg, the South African Federation is launched with Abdul Karim as President. The Federation repudiates the Cape Town Agreement, as it is opposed to the reduction of the Indian population in South Africa and their repatriation.
1929
Barry Hertzog wins general election.
League of African Rights is formed.
Walter Sisulu returns to Johannesburg after undergoing traditional Xhosa initiation rites back in Transkei. In Johannesburg Sisulu obtained work at a gold mine.
Bhawani Dayal Sannyasi, Vice President of Natal Indian Congress (NIC), President of the All-India Emigrants Conference and a member of the South African Indian Congress deputation to India in 1925, publishes a report on the subject of the repatriation scheme in which he reaches the following conclusions:
1.The repatriation scheme had failed because it brought great misery upon the repatriates, especially those born in South Africa, who were accustomed to a different standard of living.
2.The caste system in India presented great difficulties to repatriates born of inter-caste marriages in South Africa.
3.The Indian Government had been able to help a few repatriates in South India but hardly any in North India.
4.Foodstuffs in India were very costly. The repatriates would be better off financially in South Africa.
5.The repatriates, especially the skilled workers, found it very difficult to settle happily in India because of climatic conditions and low wages.
6.The repatriation scheme would become increasingly unpopular, as the true facts became known.
7. It was morally wrong to encourage unsuspecting persons to take advantage of the scheme and thereby find themselves in great difficulties in return for which those left behind would be uplifted. It was selfish for those in South Africa to benefit at the expense of the repatriates, as it was immoral for India to support the scheme without ensuring the total assimilation of the repatriates into Indian society.
General Barry Hertzog campaigns for votes to the White Electorate under the banner of the Black Manifesto in which the Swart gevaar (Black danger) is made the central issue.
Minister of Justice, Oswald Pirow leads the police force in Durban, against discontented Africans who are boycotting the Municipal Beer Halls in protest of beer monopoly and other grievances.
The leaders of Joint Councils movement create the South African Institute of Race Relations (SAIRR), a non-partisan body oriented to research and bridge the racial divides.
General Barry Hertzog is re-elected Prime Minister of South Africa.
Clements Kadalie resigns from the Industrial and Commercial Union (ICU) in an attempt to form an independent workers union with those opposed to William Ballinger.
Isaac Bokala is born in Newclare, Johannesburg.
Martin Luther King is born.
Norman Levy is born.
Leon Levy is born.
Joseph G. Matthews is born.
John Mtini takes part in the anti-pass campaigns.
Peter Papela Nthite is born in Sophiatown, Johannesburg.
Ronald Edwin Press is born.
Emma Mashinini is born in Rosetteville, Johannesburg.
The Johannesburg Bantu Football Association is founded.
January, Clements Kadalie resigns from ICU after disputes with W. G. Ballinger.
January, Sir Kurma Reddi succeeds V.S.S. Sastri as Agent of the Government of India in South Africa.
1 January, The Communist Party of South Africa (CPSA) adopts a programme at the seventh annual conference of the Party.
February, First National European-Bantu Conference.
April, Independent ICU formed under the leadership of Clements Kadalie.
23 May, Johannes Modise is born in Doornfontein, Johannesburg.
June, National elections. Nationalists gain parliamentary majority. General Hertzog forms government without aid of South African Labour Party).
Africans of Natal boycott municipal beer halls. Demonstrations in Durban around office of ICU yase Natal result in loss of African and European lives.
September, A.W.G. Champion barred from Natal under provisions of Riotous Assemblies (Amendment) Act.
October, The Governor-General of South Africa, the Earl of Athlone, opens Sastri College, a high school for Indian boys, in Durban.
November, Oswald Pirow, Minister of Justice, leads police expedition to Durban to force Africans to pay poll tax).
South African Institute of Race Relations formed.
November, Minister of Justice, Oswald Pirow leads the police force in Durban, against discontented Africans who are boycotting the Municipal Beer Halls in protest of beer monopoly and other grievances,
29 December, The tenth annual conference of the South African Indian Congress (SAIC) is held in Cape Town. At the Conference, the Indian Agent in South Africa, Sir Kurma Reddie, comes under severe criticism because of the way he is handling the interests of South African Indians.

Last updated : 01-Feb-2016

This article was produced by South African History Online on 21-Mar-2011

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