Margaret Ballinger

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Biographical information

First name: 
Last name: 
Date of birth: 
Location of birth: 
Glasgow,United Kingdom
Date of death: 
Location of death: 
South Africa

Ballinger was a member of the white Native Representatives Council (NRC) in the 1930s, and together with Senator Edgar Brookes helped to change parliamentary debate from one focusing on control of the black population to one concentrating on the long-term welfare of the black population. Ballinger focused her efforts on the Assembly. In 1943 she put forward a motion calling for new direction in the administering of Native Affairs, and the acceptance of the Smit Report.

In 1947 she suggested to Smuts that the permanent existence of blacks in the towns be recognised. She also called for better training for black farm workers and the creation of labour exchanges so that pass laws could be removed. With regards to black representation, she called for the extension of black representation to municipal and provincial councils and proper consultation with the NRC.

Ballinger later became a member of Parliament, and was one of very few people who openly criticized H.F. Verwoerd.

• T.R.H. Davenport Zug:The Guardian

Last updated : 23-May-2018

This article was produced for South African History Online on 17-Feb-2011