1 August 1985
Thirty years after the first Treason trial in 1956, 16 members of the United Democratic Front (UDF) were accused of treason in the Pietermaritzburg Supreme Court. The trial became known as the Pietermaritzburg Treason Trial. The accused were also charged with endorsing the ideas of the banned African National Congress (ANC). They were: Mewalal Ramgobin, Chanderdeo Sewpersadh, Mooroogiah Naidoo, Essop Jassat, Aubrey Mokoena, Curtis Nkondo, Archibald Gumede, Devadas David, Albertina Sisulu, Frank Chikane, Ebrahim Saloojee, Ismail Mohammed, Richard Gqweta, Sisa Njikelana, Samuel Kikine and Isaac Ngcobo. The last four were all members of the South African Allied Workers Union (SAAWU), while Mokoena, Nkondo, Gumede and Sisulu were members of the UDF. The rest were members of UDF-aligned Transvaal or Natal Indian Congress (TIC and NIC).The trial followed an anti-Tri cameral Parliament protest in 1984, with the arrest of seven UDF members. Three weeks after their arrest, the accused were released following an application to the court. References NelsonMandela.org, (n.d.), ‘Commemorating 25 years of the founding of the United Democratic Front’ from Nelson Mandela Foundation [online] Available at www.nelsonmandela.org [Accessed: 23 June 2011] South African History Online, ‘The Pietermaritzburg Treason Trial, 1984’ [online] Available at www.sahistory.org.za [Accessed: 27 July 2011]