newritings

June 27, 2009

The Role of Sports in Society

Filed under: manifesto,sports,testimonies — newritings @ 6:13 pm

IN this series we continue our focus on sports and society. We reproduce a paper by the former president of the Anti Apartheid Sports movement because we believe that it is of immense interest to the global community concerned about the role of sports as part of society, and seeking answers whether sports can contribute to questions of personal liberation, expanded democracy and personal and societal development.

This piece by FRANK A VAN DER FRANK A VAN DER HORST written for a conference in 2005 can be read in full on this site, but we reproduce the concluding section here to broaden the debate.

I am and was an avid supporter of the organizing slogan that one cannot have normal sport in an abnormal society, but as a trade unionist, activist with a left orientation, I have equally believed that leisure time and recreation was critical for working people, to enjoy not for continued exploitation, but to reflect and strengthen ourselves to resists control by corporations and capital in general.

Betrand Russel in his essay, In praise of Idleness, has pointed out that “The idea that the poor should have leisure has always been shocking to the rich. In England, in the early nineteenth century, fifteen hours was the ordinary day’s work for a man; children sometimes did as much, and very commonly did twelve hours a day. When meddlesome busybodies suggested that perhaps these hours were rather long, they were told that work kept adults from drink and children from mischief. When I was a child, shortly after urban working men had acquired the vote, certain public holidays were established by law, to the great indignation of the upper classes. I remember hearing an old Duchess say: ‘What do the poor want with holidays? They ought to work.’ People nowadays are less frank, but the sentiment persists, and is the source of much of our economic confusion. “

So I guess when we discuss the role of sports we should not only focus on its mobilising impact, which I think refers more to players and associations being supporters of a particular cause or line, but they equally give free expression – both mental and physical – to human beings to explore their full potentialities. If this is the perspective, we may have to adopt a less harsh line on the new reality of non racial – multi racial sports being played in South Africa, and push for radical reform at every effort, for each player (female, disabled and Black especially) denied the right to play.

It does mean that the opposition will be not outside but inside and protracted, a daily struggle. It is here that the sports movement can learn something from the trade union movement. The struggles are continuous, involving negotiation, action and consolidation and again another hurdle forward. If we do not adopt a new approach to how we push for continued radical transformation of the various sporting codes we could be rejecting our children, brothers and sisters who today still make progress against great odds. We have to use the success of the Brian Habana’s and the few Black coaches to push for more and sustained transformation that will free us not only from Apartheid control and its legacy but the new corporate take over of global sports.

If our children do not pursue their dreams we will be failing in our goals of full human liberation and, what is worse, the elites -new black elite and the traditional elite – (the leisure classes) will continue to enjoy their lives whilst the vast majority continues to serve them. Pushing for full and equal participation without corporate control is long and hard but it is our only option. Opting out is not a real choice today.

In solidarity

Hass

THE SOUTH AFRICAN COUNCIL ON SPORT:THE SPORTS WING OF THE LIBERATION MOVEMENT
DEVELOPMENT OF NON-RACIAL SPORT

SACOS: RESPONSE OF OPPRESSED SPORTS BODIES
The South African Council on Sport (SACOS) was founded on 17 March 1973 as the response of black oppressed sports bodies to the inhuman oppressive apartheid system of white minority rule, its policy of white domination in the political, social, sporting and economic arena, its expropriation of the country’s wealth, and its system of black subjugation and denial of human rights. These policies were brutally enforced through racial discriminatory laws, racist institutions and a powerful repressive police force, secret service and army. The rich privileged ruling class ‘whites-only’ sports bodies which represented South Africa in international sports federations, test matches and the Olympic Games systematically excluded blacks.

BOLD NEW REVOLUTIONARY STRATEGIES NEEDED
Bold, new, integrated and revolutionary strategies are needed to build an egalitarian society that will require determined political will-power and purposefulness to fundamentally change society and urgently deliver quality results within strict time frames. Some are listed below.
1. Although the policy of white domination has been rejected and all racial laws abolished, the glaring social, sporting and economic (class) inequalities still persist and are visibly worsening for the vast majority of people except for a growing black middle class. This self-seeking middle class does not uplift the poor but merely acts as a social buffer to protect rich big business from the poor exploited working class. Real economic power and most of the county’s wealth is still in the hands of big (white) business in spite a small black empowerment elite that is mostly beholden to big capital.27 Almost 50% of the population live below the poverty line. The dominant ideas in society are still those of the capitalist exploitative ruling class. The unequal distribution or control of wealth must be radically changed to eliminate the massive power of big capital corporations and to build an egalitarian non-exploitative democracy. Correct the huge chasm between rich and poor and abolish the associated social and economic class barriers that perpetuate privilege and inequalities in society.
2. Most of the prime land whether choice residential, fertile agricultural, mining, industrial and commercial areas are still controlled by the same cartels albeit with a black empowerment component and land restitution is mainly for poor subsistence farming. Solve the agrarian problem and land hunger by effectively providing viable redistribution or equitable social control of land. Introduce modern sustainable mechanized agricultural farming methods, education or training to improve crop quality, productivity and ecological awareness to preserve our resources for future generations. Prosperous farming communities will then enjoy better quality of life and improve sport in their leisure time.
3. The migratory (essentially cheap, black surplus) labour system is still operative. Introduce a stable settled educated work-force with rapid competitive job creation in manufacturing, commerce or computer based service industries to eliminate unemployment and poverty. Introduce global-quality skills training with continuously improving competitive standards, improved production levels, income, standard of living and sporting achievements.
4. Public education (as opposed to expensive private schools), is in a virtual state of collapse, especially the teaching of science, mathematics and modern technological skills (compared to global standards).28 A free compulsory modern top class education system with well trained and qualified teachers are essential for highly competitive management and production systems that power economic, social and sporting development in global competitions.
5. Local municipalities have (at present) only 8% of the requisite skills or experienced staff and are collapsing in the face of basic service delivery, rapid changes of former ghettoes and essential forward planning for required new economic growth and social development. Rapid people-orientated skills training (with sustained mentoring and supervision), education of engineers and other professional or technical staff is required and must become a national priority for improved country-wide municipal service delivery.
6. The grave existing housing shortage is growing exponentially as fewer houses are built annually relative to the yearly family formation or growing demand.29 Adequate durable quality housing stock must be rapidly built conforming strictly to National Building Regulations like health, fire, safety, long-life and structural requirements and serve as a kick-start for economic growth and job creation for the entire population.
7. The provision of health, sports and civic amenities in former black areas remain poor, as hospital and clinic services have limited budgets, overworked staff or lack modern equipment.30 Provide adequate affordable well equipped fully staffed health services (with well-funded research to cure AIDS and other diseases), civic amenities and sports facilities.
8. The high ethical standards, voluntary service, transparent accountable governance and sound moral values of the SACOS era have been destroyed with open mercenary greed, fraud, numerous corruption scandals, cronyism in job appointments and even bribed referees. Many public sports and public administration officials pay themselves unjustified astronomical salaries, rich bonus awards (in cash-strapped bodies), travel or entertainment perks or give contracts to pals. Administrative chaos and scandals abound over take-over bids as competing groups of elites fight over the financial spoils. This mindset is merely a cancerous continuation of the corrupt ways of the previous regime that is damaging the bonds of civil society. Ruthless measures are required to drastically eliminate all forms of corruption and greed from all government, public, private, business and sports bodies coupled with the promotion of exemplary sound democratic governance.
9. The aspiring mandarins and fat-cats forget about performance management or quality service delivery. Poor administration is aggravated by rapid firing of coaches, outdated training methods (Staaldraad), old-style prejudices or values and racially skewed selection of representative teams. The malaise is reflected by poor and declining performances against international competition in rugby, soccer, cricket and particularly, the Olympic Games. High ethical standards of governance, public accountability and people- orientated development must be developed and even enforced.
(10)The high rate of formal unemployment (41%),31 job losses and poverty, coupled with social insecurity, violence, rapes, murders, increasing suicides, gangsterism, growing influence of druglords and overcrowded prisons (a training centre for gangs) alienate people and undermines social well- being. More than half of the population are marginalised from ever excelling in economic growth or sporting progress. Eradicate fear, violence, gangsterism, drug abuse and associated social problems in a decisive way so that the entire population own and drive the development processes, experience tangible social and economic prosperity and develop as enthusiastic interested stakeholders.
(11)Modern fully equipped sports facilities and top class sports developmentacademies should have been provided at provincial and national levels. Young talent must be identified, nurtured, trained and provided withintensive modern specialised training and coaching to world-class standards.
(12) Break down privilege, prejudice, class and economic barriers to build a prosperous, mutually co-operative, non-racial, cohesive united democratic nation. Create a sense of caring, sharing, people-centred development that promote friendliness, confidence, individual and social well being, visible change, prosperity, progress and patriotism in the entire population
The huge and growing chasm of economic and social inequality, poverty, class division, lack of continuous improvement, service delivery and socio-economic development in South Africa has resulted in increasing unrest, bigger demonstrations and deepening chaos in sport and society. Under these appalling conditions, the old SACOS motto of “NO NORMAL SPORT IN AN ABNORMAL SOCIETY” still rings particularly true and meaningful, in the quest for social and sporting justice.
FRANK A VAN DER HORST B.Sc. B.Sc.(Civil Engineer). Sec Teachers Dipl. Property Dev. Dipl. (All U.C.T.). B.Admin. (Hons) School of Government. M.Comm. (All U.W.C.).
Delegate from South African Hockey Board to SACOS: 1973-77.
Vice President: SACOS 1977-82.
President: SACOS 1982-88.
Chairperson: WESTERN PROVINCE COUNCIL OF SPORT 1970-82.
Convenor: SACOS NATIONAL SPORTS FESTIVALS 1982 and 1988
Director: SACOSPORT AND LIBERATION CONFERENCE 1983
Secretary: SOUTH AFRICAN HOCKEY BOARD 1970-89

THE SOUTH AFRICAN COUNCIL ON SPORT:THE SPORTS WING OF THE LIBERATION MOVEMENT

DEVELOPMENT OF NON-RACIAL SPORT

SACOS: RESPONSE OF OPPRESSED SPORTS BODIES

The South African Council on Sport (SACOS) was founded on 17 March 1973 as the response of black oppressed sports bodies to the inhuman oppressive apartheid system of white minority rule, its policy of white domination in the political, social, sporting and economic arena, its expropriation of the country’s wealth, and its system of black subjugation and denial of human rights. These policies were brutally enforced through racial discriminatory laws, racist institutions and a powerful repressive police force, secret service and army. The rich privileged ruling class ‘whites-only’ sports bodies which represented South Africa in international sports federations, test matches and the Olympic Games systematically excluded blacks.

FORMATION OF NON-RACIAL SPORTS BODIES

Many black clubs or less well-known regional sports organisations waged isolated and sporadic struggles against the colour bar in sport and society since the nineteenth century.1 Most black sports bodies prior to SACOS, were first constituted along racial lines (according to the ruthlessly enforced apartheid laws and inculcated racist values of the ruling classes) as ‘coloured’, ‘indian’, ‘malay’ and ‘african’ or ‘bantu’ bodies. Strenuous and painful efforts had to be made, in the face of intense police victimisation, denial of facilities or sponsorship, to break these enforced racial barriers and overcome indoctrinated colour, class, caste, religious, cultural and language prejudices. An uneven and irregular pattern of amalgamation followed as many oppressed sports bodies (led by cricket, soccer, table-tennis, athletics, cycling, weight-lifting, tennis) generally first played ‘inter-racial’ matches that led to the formation of ‘inter-racial’ bodies and ultimately one non-racial national controlling sports body.2 SACOS, like its forerunners, the severely harassed South African Sports Association (SASSA)3 and the South African Non-Racial Olympic Movement (SANROC)6, began to tackle racist sport in a highly organised and systematic manner that grew into a powerful national social movement in the struggle for non-racial sport and social liberation.

PIONEERS OF NON-RACIAL SPORT

The 1960’s saw a huge political upsurge in protests with marches against the pass laws, mass police shootings and killings of blacks in Sharpeville and Langa, and the banning of all major political resistance organisations or their leadership4. Many political leaders were imprisoned that led to the emergence of the underground armed struggle against apartheid and sustained rural land revolts like the Pondoland rebellion.

Golfer Papwa Sewgolam, a caddy from Natal and the Dutch Golf Open champion in 1959 and 1960, won the Natal Golf Open in 1963. He was humiliatingly debarred from the whites-only golf clubhouse and was compelled to receive his trophy through a window (which was typical treatment of blacks) while standing under an umbrella in pouring rain.

During this period, the South African Non-Racial Olympic Committee (SANROC) was formed on 7 October 1962 in Durban, with SASA its fore-runner merging into it.5 The focus shifted to isolate and expel racist South African sport from international competition and the Olympic Games. SANROC as an organisation was ‘completely non-racial which will choose representatives purely on merit’. SANROC was prevented from sending a delegation to the IOC but succeeded in having Apartheid South Africa put to terms by the IOC and South Africa was prevented from participating in the 1964 Tokyo Olympic Games. Police responded by severely harassing the SANROC leadership into exile in 1965.6 This led to the rebirth of SANROC in 1967 in London which is strategically much closer to the international world.7 Apartheid South Africa was first excluded from the Olympic Games in 1964, again in 1968, and finally expelled from the Olympic Movement in 1970.

FORMATION AND GROWTH OF SACOS

Sports persons soon realised that the struggle to achieve full equality and non-racial sport was totally inter-linked with the struggle for social, political and economic equality and total liberation from apartheid national oppression and class exploitation. An obvious need existed to form a united front and broad-based social movement of national sports controlling bodies to fill the void left by SANROC which under Dennis Brutus, had relocated to London.

Preliminary discussions by eight non-racial federations led to the formation of an ad-hoc committee, the South African Non-Racial Sports Organisation (SASPO), in September 1970. SASPO had a moderate platform and was prepared to negotiate with white sportsmen over their differences. It called for complete non-racial equality for all sports persons from school level upwards, condemned the racial permit system and the unequal distribution of commercial sponsorship.

SACOS was founded on 17 March 1973 as the only legitimate non-racial sports representative body in South Africa,8 with eight affiliates, by pioneers Hassan Howa, Manickum N. Pather, Geo Singh, Cassim Abbass, Morgan Naidoo, Norman Middleton and others. Middleton was replaced after a protracted struggle because of his collaboration with the apartheid tricameral parliament and membership of the servile ‘coloured’ Labour Party. The mood was aggressive and SACOS called for a complete moratorium on all tours to and from South Africa and the boycott of all official apartheid institutions for so long as apartheid laws remained on the statute books.9 The number of affiliates grew steadily over the years as the political struggle intensified, through a voluntary association of large autonomous national sports bodies, their provincial unions, local clubs and provincial councils of sport. At its peak, SACOS influence grew way beyond its membership of over two million grassroots players because of its close working relationships with trade union, community, civic, student, youth, cultural, church, mosque, educational, women, health, professional and resistance organisations and by acting as an umbrella for different underground freedom fighters. The affiliates included the:

S.A Darts Board of Control S.A. Soccer Federation

S.A. Soccer Federation Professional League S.A. Rugby Union

S.A. Senior Schools’ Sports Association S.A. Cricket Board

S.A. Primary Schools Sports Association Netball Association of S.A

S.A. Tertiary Institutions Sports Association Chess Association of S.A

Amateur Swimming Association of S.A S.A. Baseball Association

Amateur Volleyball Association of S.A S.A. Boxing Council

S.A. Amateur Athletics Board Tennis Association of S.A.

S. A. Amateur Weightlifting & Body Building Fed. S.A. Table Tennis Board

S. A. Non-Racial Amateur Golf Association S.A. Hockey Board

S.A. Women’s Hockey Board S.A. Softball Association

S.A. Squash Rackets Federation S.A. Surf Lifesaving Union

S.A. Billiards and Snooker Control Board S. A. Cycling Board

Transvaal Council of Sport Natal Council of Sport

Eastern Province Council of Sport Griqualand West Council of Sport

South Western Districts Council of Sport Boland Council of Sport

Western Province Council of Sport Border Council of Sport

Grahamstown and District Council of Sport Victoria East Council of Sport

South Western Districts Council of Sport Graaf Reinet Sports Board Sport

Committee Against Racial Discrimination

The provincial councils of sport catered for the affiliation of provincial unions of national bodies, often expanding their influence and membership to new townships thereby breaking racial barriers and building unity for a new non-racial nation. They also catered for purely local or provincial sports bodies (like martial arts, mountaineering, judo and Albany Non-Racial Sports Board) and helped in the formation of new sports bodies. They worked with grassroots players or local organisations and assisted in democratically debating, formulating and implementing non-racial strategies and tactics. Policies were adopted on a consensus basis at SACOS conferences for a non-racial, non-sexist egalitarian society that was voluntarily implemented in a truly amazing spirit.

SOCIAL AND ECONOMIC SETTING OF SPORT

VOLUNTARY OFFICIALS

Non-racial sports bodies were financially unsubsidized by government or municipalities with no advertising income, little media coverage (except in voluntary community newspapers) and hardly any business sponsorships. Finances were raised through membership fees and community fund-raising social functions or matches. No salaries were paid to voluntary, democratically elected officials (including trainers, coaches and managers) who operated on a non-profit, corruption-free basis. Accommodation for visiting teams during tournaments were in private homes or in community facilities. Teams developed an ethos of self-discipline, good behaviour and sporting excellence. Mainline media supported racist sport and opposed SACOS but many sympathetic journalists wrote voluntarily for alternate community newspapers.

School sport (senior and primary schools) and tertiary institutions played a powerful role in building SACOS, as teachers and students voluntarily promoted inter-school and provincial competitions in all provinces. Schools organised enlightened discussion groups of students on non-racial education, sport and society that stimulated critical thinking, developed inquiring minds, raised educational standards, broke down fictitious barriers and irrational prejudices. A dedicated corps of teachers nation-wide nurtured successive generations of sport playing students and youth that became committed cadres of SACOS, community organisations and trade unions. These factors helped to build community and spectator support, social cohesion across religious, colour, cultural, language and other perceived barriers, and inspired principled unity in struggle.

NATIONAL OPPRESSION, CLASS EXPLOITATION AND SPORT

Black sports persons suffered under national oppression and class exploitation, and were violently subjugated throughout their entire lives by the political, economic and social colour bar system. Anybody who challenged the ruling class ideology of an enfranchised superior white master race was met with fascist repression. The apartheid system was based on:

  1. A system of white domination supported by the vast majority of the whites-only electorate and the denial of human and political rights to blacks. This arose out of the old colonial master-servant (and freed slaves) relationship.
  2. Systematic land dispossession through earlier military wars of conquest, various Land acts and expropriation leading to unequal distribution of land.10
  3. Homelands which served as reservoirs of cheap surplus black labour and sustained the cheap black (migratory) labour system.
  4. Control exerted through the hated (dom)pass and influx control (into urban areas) with constant police raids (often against non-racial sport), resulting in massive arrests, jail sentences, fines, deportation to homelands, banning orders or even death in detention.
  5. Wealth was concentrated in a number of white families and overseas cartels constituting a ruling white capitalist elite. More than 80% of the Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE) was controlled by rich profit-making cartels like Anglo-American Corporation, De Beers and other industrial, commercial and retailing giants with support from big overseas investors. Big business accumulated vast amounts of capital during apartheid that entrenched their strategic, economic, social power in sport.11
  6. A system of segregated inferior Bantu, Coloured and Indian education that crippled or retarded the black youth’s sporting future and the educational, social, economic, technological and scientific development. It was a form of political indoctrination designed to ensure white domination, to keep blacks socially subjugated and to inculcate a submissive slave mentality.
  7. Separate or parallel development (other names for apartheid) forcibly provided separated, inferior or inadequate housing locations, group areas, ghettoes or squatter camps (that were distantly located on the edges of towns involving extra travelling time and costs). Health and sports facilities were inferior, or did not exist at all.
  8. Sport, like all social activities under Apartheid, whether in churches, schools, cinemas, entertainment, or on beaches, trains or busses, was strictly segregated by law. Special humiliating permits for ‘mixed (school) sport’ or church social events were required from the government’s Department of Sport and Recreation or local government. This permission often required the provision of segregated toilets, entrances, seating accommodation, or refreshment stalls.
  9. Economic dominance favouring the healthier, richer, white, better educated sports-persons as against the poverty stricken black people who were hampered by malnutrition, major health problems and later, an AIDS pandemic. The unequal distribution of the country’s wealth, allowed the privileged rich white social classes with their ‘old boys club’ connections an unfair advantage to dominate and control sport at local, national and international level. They were supported by big banks, profitable advertising, high yield marketing, powerful media control, lucrative sponsorships, property developers and a multi-billion tourist industry.

(10)Institutionalised segregated sport enforced by numerous oppressive laws.12 A policy of divide and rule, to disunite the oppressed and create hostility along racial and class lines, was enforced through the separate Bantu Affairs, Coloured Affairs and Indian Affairs Departments and puppet Homeland governments. Subservient black collaborators with the racist Representative Councils, the Tricameral Parliamentary system and local management or advisory committees applied the governments oppressive laws with rich rewards for their evil deeds.

(11)The creation of fear, denial of well-being, reinforced by ethnic and class divisions, high rates of social diseases, tuberculosis, malnutrition, infant mortality, psychological and social stresses. Job reservation (better paid jobs to whites, menial jobs to blacks), high unemployment (40%), low wages and poverty increased social problems of drug abuse violence, gangsterism, rape and murder. Sport could not easily flourish under such unhealthy and hostile social conditions, immense poverty, growing influence of druglords, rampant corruption, a massive housing shortage, poor subsistence farming, inferior education and broken families of migratory labourers.

Sports persons were mainly urban or rural workers (many belonged to trade unions and community organisations), students, youth, and professionals who instinctively engaged in the struggle for social emancipation and gender equity from the yoke of apartheid oppression and class exploitation.

UNIQUE ROLE OF SACOS IN RESISTANCE MOVEMENT

1976 STUDENT REVOLT

The 1976 mass students uprising started in Soweto against Bantu education and the compulsory study of Afrikaans and swept through all the big urban and rural cities against inferior ‘gutter’ education. This revolt co-incided with the growth of Black Consciousness militancy, increasing grassroots mobilisation and an upsurge of organised black trade unions against discriminatory working conditions and exploitative low wages. Community, civic, youth, student and sport bodies rejected collaborators with apartheid as ‘impimpis’ (informers) and boycotted ‘dummy’ racial local government structure. They made racist administrations ‘politically ungovernable’ under the slogan of ‘no compromise’ to apartheid. SACOS cancelled sports matches about June 16-17 every year to commemorate the national students uprising with other community organisations.

BROEDERBOND CONTROL OF SPORT AND SOCIETY

The secretive Afrikaner Broederbond was an intelligence gathering body and strategic ‘think tank’ that formulated policies for the apartheid government.

In 1976 the Apartheid Minister of Sport and former Broederbond secretary, Piet Koornhof, tried in desperation to introduce a sham ‘normal multi-racial sports policy’ that would spuriously enable sports competitions at national or other levels under special racial permit or a blanket dispensation.13 This was rejected as reformed discrimination, mere window dressing for Apartheid, designed for deceptive overseas propaganda and to recruit mercenary unprincipled collaborators and overseas tours to play with racist sport.14

SACOS WARNED

SACOS received warnings that there was no place for political activists in the sports dispensation in 1979 from Broederbonder F.W.de Klerk then Apartheid Minister of Sport. For many years, passports for overseas travel were withheld from SACOS officials like M.N. Pather (after his return from the United Nations), Hassan Howa, Frank Van Der Horst, Errol Vawda, Morgan Naidoo, Krish Mackerdhuj and others.

DOUBLE STANDARDS RESOLUTION

SACOS was inundated with calls requesting clarification on a matter of principle – could persons playing in non-racial sport organisations play in other codes which have a racist content? SACOS at a historic meeting analysed and denounced the new ‘normal or multiracial sports policy’ as a fraud and called on its affiliates not to subject themselves to this indignity. It was rejected as a new trick to co-opt stooges, turncoats or sellouts or lure mercenary collaborators into Apartheid sport for personal gain, and thereby break the local and international sports boycott. SACOS was not willing to suffer the indignity to be co-opted to Apartheid’s corrupt racist values or evil schemes and issued the historic Double Standards Resolution at a meeting on 6 April 1977.

“Any person, whether he is a player, administrator or a spectator, committed to the non-racial principle in sport, shall not participate in or be associated with any other code of sport which practices, perpetuates or condones racialism or multi-racialism. Players and / or administrators disregarding the essence of this principle shall be guilty of practising double-standards, and cannot therefore be members of any organisation affiliated to SACOS”.

NO NORMAL SPORT IN AN ABNORMAL SOCIETY

SACOS clearly realized that South Africans lived in an abnormal, racial and sexist discriminatory, oppressive and exploitative society. Non-racial sport could only be achieved in a liberated non-racial democratic non-sexist society with full equality of rights (political, economic, educational, gender, language and cultural) for the entire population and the working class majority. The struggle was therefore to build a new FULLY DEMOCRATIC UNDIVIDED NATION that aimed to share equally society’s wealth, reconstruct and develop the economy and improve sport and civil life for all. SACOS countered the multi-national sports policy with its famous battle cry and slogan that there could be “NO NORMAL SPORT IN AN ABNORMAL SOCIETY”.15 This resounded throughout the country, both urban and rural, from national to provincial to club level.

The strict application of the DOUBLE STANDARDS policy (against voluntary sports and political collaborators with the Apartheid rulers for mercenary gain) and the “NO NORMAL SPORT IN AN ABNORMAL SOCIETY” battle cry, clearly identified SACOS as the sports wing of the liberatory movement.

SACOS Secretary, M.N. Pather and Vice President F. A. Van Der Horst met with Black Consciousness, sporting and other community organisations in 1977 in Johannesburg and successfully stopped a mercenary rebel soccer tour to South Africa when local players revolted and boycotted the matches. Many Black Consciousness organisations and senior officials were thereafter banned.

INTERNATIONAL SUPPORT: ISOLATION OF RACIST SPORT

LOCAL AND INTERNATIONAL BOYCOTT OF APARTHEID SPORT

SACOS and its overseas representative SANROC, called for the total isolation and a boycott of Apartheid institutions and white-only or racist sport, both locally and internationally.

In a major breakthrough on 28 March 1980, M.N. Pather (General Secretary of SACOS), addressed the United Nations Committee Against Apartheid. He spoke with Abraham Ordia (President, Supreme Council for Sport in Africa), Dennis Brutus (Chairperson, International Campaign against Racism in Sport), Sam Ramsamy (Chairperson, South African Non-Racial Olympic Committee), Kader Asmal (Chairman, Irish Anti Apartheid Movement) and others.16

An International Co-ordinating Centre Against Apartheid in Sport (ICAAS) was formed to implement a complete moratorium on all tours, to isolate South African racist sport by drawing up a list to pressurise and lobby persons, companies and organisations that worked with it. In order to avoid confusion or dirty tricks, only people accredited by SACOS would be accepted to represent non-racial sport. This was a powerful weapon for SACOS and non-racial sport as constitutions of the IOC and most international sports federations condemned and outlawed any form of discrimination.

RECOGNITION AND SUPPORT FOR SACOS

SACOS gained international recognition and became an associate member of the Supreme Council for Sport in Africa, the United Nations Committee Against Apartheid, and the Federation Sportive & Gymnique Du Travail. This gave recognition to the democratic struggles of black sportsmen and women for equality of human rights and to SACOS as the sole representative organisation for non-racial sport in South Africa.

International moral support for SACOS principles and the sports boycott came from many international governments, civil and church organisations, federations of trade unions, universities, educational, other institutions17 and prominent activists.18 Apartheid sport was effectively opposed, boycotted and demonstrated against in many international sports competitions in different countries. Apartheid South Africa was expelled from international bodies like the Olympic Games (1970), chess (1974), soccer (suspended in 1964, expelled in 1976), athletics (1976), swimming and cricket.

SACOSPORT AND LIBERATION CONFERENCE

INVITATION TO A RACIST RUGBY CONFERENCE

The SACOS president received an internationally circulated notice to attend and deliver a paper on 22 August 1983 at an International Congress for Rugby Media in Cape Town that would be hosted by Dr Danie Craven’s racist S.A. Rugby Board. This conference would be attended by a large contingent of invited foreign and local sports writers and journalists, and be addressed by Apartheid government ministers, collaborators with the racist S.A.Rugby Board and arch collaborator of the Labour Party, Rev. A. Hendrickse.19 This notice came from Dr Danie Craven who once publicly declared that no black rugby player will wear a Springbok green and gold jersey over his dead body.

The SACOS executive rejected the arrogant ‘summons’ with its master and slave mentality to deliver a paper for apartheid propaganda at a racist sports body congress. SACOS decided instead to organise a broad-based conference of nation-wide representatives from all non-racial liberatory sports bodies, trade unions, community, educational, resistance, student and youth organisations to establish the role of SACOS in sport and liberation.

SACOSPORT AND LIBERATION CONFERENCE

A huge ground-breaking national SACOSPORT and LIBERATION conference was held in Cape Town on 20-21 August 1983 in the Hanover Park Civic Centre.

This jam-packed unifying conference was attended by over a thousand delegates from SACOS’s national affiliates or their provincial unions, provincial councils of sport affiliates, together with delegates from many progressive rural and urban community organisations, liberatory national political bodies, militant trade unions, civics, cultural and youth structures. Seminal input papers were delivered on: Sport and the Nation; Sport and the Worker; Sport and the Constitutional Proposals; Sport and the Student; and The Role of the Non-racial Sportsperson in the Liberatory Struggle. Intense debates hammered out a principled basis for united struggle and action, agreed on common non-collaborative strategies with the racist oppressors and united working-class approaches against Apartheid exploitation in the struggle for liberation. This conference coincided with the launch of the United Democratic Front (UDF) in Mitchells Plain and some SACOS officials and observers attended both conferences.20

SACOS NATIONAL SPORTS FESTIVALS, LECTURES AND AWARDS

SACOS honoured the non-racial sporting heroes in two massive SACOS NATIONAL SPORTS FESTIVALS in 1982 (held mainly at the Athlone Stadium and Athlone Civic Centre, Cape Town) and 1988 (held mainly at the University of the Western Cape Sports Stadium and Athlone Sports Stadium, Cape Town). The two best national teams of players, coaches and managers from each sporting code competed for national honours and received national colours and medals in public recognition for their role in the struggle for liberation. Community cultural and musical groups performed. Excellent mass gymnastradas were performed by thousands of students from different schools affiliated to the Senior and Primary Schools Sports Unions and were enthusiastically applauded at packed stadiums.

STRATEGIC PAPERS

Many strategic papers were delivered at SACOS conferences including topics on: The Homelands Policy, Unfranchised Children at Private White Schools, The Role of Provincial Councils of Sport and Gender Equity in Sport.

The M.N. Pather Memorial Lecture program was introduced to honour the late founder member and national secretary of SACOS. Excellent analytical papers that clearly advanced the non-racial sports struggle were delivered by Advocate Abdullah M. Omar on 26 November 1982 in Durban, Alec Erwin, Education Officer of the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (NUMSA), on 4 December1987 in Cape Town, and Father Smangaliso Mkhatshwa, Secretary of the Catholic Church’s Institute of Contextual Study, on 15 July 1988 in Johannesburg. Gwede Mantashe of the National Union of Mineworkers delivered an inspiring lecture, hosted by NACOS, on the important role of mining workers in the political economy.11

The SACOS National Sportsperson of the Year ball was held with the M.N. Pather Memorial Lecture, to honour the top sports persons from each code of sport for outstanding contributions.21

APARTHEID IN CRISIS: A NEGOTIATED SETTLEMENT

AGGRESSIVE NON-COLLABORATION

The eighties saw a rising militant opposition from shopfloor unionised workers who engaged in mass demonstrations and strikes in their demand for higher wages, better working conditions and for socialism. Radical demands for changes in social, sport, community and economic issues were united in calls for democratisation, radical social change, abolition of class inequality, and equal broad-base sharing of the economy and the country’s wealth. Aggressive non-collaboration became the foundation of resistance in the mid-1980’s to destroy the racist oppressive political structures and nullify apartheid political puppets. Apartheid structures were collapsed and made ‘politically ungovernable’ by communities and street committees who in refusing to pay rent and municipal service fees, drained the government’s finances. Communities rejected collaborators as ‘impimpis’ (informers) or sell-outs and boycotted community councils, black local authorities and ‘coloured’ and ‘indian’ dummy elections under the slogan of ‘no compromise’.

In reprisal, the Ciskei homeland dictators (collaborators) detained four senior officials of the King Williams Town and District Rugby Union (KADRU) and later banished them from the Ciskei after the union refused to take part in rugby matches as part of the sham Ciskei independence celebrations. The SACOS president had to present the union’s trophies at a bizarre protest function without its leading officials.

UNITED FRONT STRATEGY

The growing resistance intensified the non-racial sports struggle with an aggressive implementation of the Double Standards Resolution as SACOS affiliates and many community organisations jointly rejected racist sports-persons, ostracized collaborators and boycotted apartheid institutions. SACOS consistently maintained its organisational independence and remained politically non-aligned as it carried many tendencies within its ranks and most sports persons were not members of any political organisation. SACOS however, championed and advanced the united front strategy of combined struggle with all principled resistance organisations for broad-based united power for fundamental social change against a heavily armed military regime. The sports struggle was advanced as a united front against apartheid exploitation as the sports wing of the liberatory movement with the full knowledge that sport on its own, could never achieve social liberation.22

INCREASED STATE VIOLENCE

The apartheid government was in a deep crisis as the rolling mass actions continued throughout the 80’s despite the proclamation of many state of emergencies (lasting over 36 months), numerous bannings, arrests and brutal police killings. Resistance continued unabated in the face of increased state violence.

During a protest at a cricket match of the English Gatting mercenary tour (bank-rolled by South Africa business and the apartheid government) at Avendale grounds in Athlone, a mass invasion of the pitch took place. SACOS officials and hundreds of protesters were arrested and removed in police trucks by a phalanx of police. Further demonstrations occurred in Kimberley and Bloemfontein before the racist South African Cricket Union cancelled the tour.

Rugby had been played since the 1880’s by non-racial clubs in New Brighton in Port Elizabeth. The apartheid authorities refused to provide a rugby field for the community, so the local clubs and community organisations in the 1980’s, led by Dan Queqe of the Kwazekele Rugby Union (KWARU) an affiliate of S.A. Rugby Union and SACOS, built a rugby field in the open veld by clearing stones and obstacles. The celebrated Dan Qqeqe Staduim became a symbol of resistance to Apartheid’s denial of facilities and a triumph for community self-help.

The SACOS president was arrested and detained by the security police for entering New Brighton in Port Elizabeth when he was invited to address a much-publicised congress and mass meeting of the Motor Assembly and Components Workers’ Union of South Africa on the theme “Workers Unite in the 80’s”. (MACWUSA, later merged with other unions to form NUMSA, the National Union of Metal Workers of South Africa).23

Makhakensi Stofile, president of the non-racial Victoria East Rugby Union, SACOS patron in 1986 and executive member of the United Democratic Front (UDF) gave evidence in a court case in New Zealand which successfully challenged the New Zealand Rugby Union’s proposed 1985 tour of South Africa. On his return to South Africa, Stofile was detained and sentenced to 11 years imprisonment for terrorism but was released in 1989.

SACOS condemned the detentions of affiliated officials Ihron Rensburg (president Kwazekele Soccer Board) and Peter Swartz (Uitenhage and District Rugby Union) but welcomed the release from prison of Zeph Mothopeng, Harry Gwala, Z. Sisulu and Eric Molobi.

Armed police with military vehicles (saracens or caspirs) placed the townships under siege and turned them into war zones. Sports stadiums were used for mass rallies and huge funerals of heroes killed in the struggle for liberation. In this climate, the image of SACOS as a progressive sports liberation organisation soon extended far beyond the realm of non-racial sport to an important part of the people’s resistance movement. SACOS officials addressed many mass rallies, funerals, community, civic, youth and student protest meetings to give guidance on the way forward.24

Security police shot and killed a number of people in anti-apartheid protests at the Athens Road Mosque in Athlone. The Muslim religious community called for the use of the City and Suburban Rugby grounds for a mass funeral. All Western Cape non-racial sports matches (cricket, baseball, softball, men’s and women’s hockey, netball, soccer, rugby, table-tennis, tennis, primary and high school sports, swimming, darts, athletics, etc) were immediately cancelled that week-end as a demonstration of solidarity with the victims of apartheid. Religious, community and SACOS leaders addressed the huge funeral of tens of thousands of mourners from all religions, community, sports and resistance organisations. The procession to the Rylands cemetery stretched for about 3 km, marching 20 abreast, which included a huge component of black-veiled women organisations marching in solidarity. The vanguard of the returning marchers from the cemetery saw the only ‘multi-national’ cricket match taking place at Avendale in Kewtown. The players fled in panic for safety into their clubhouse as mourners vented their anger on their limousines parked outside.

HUGE NATIONAL DEBT

The near bankcrupt apartheid police state was plunged into a deep economic, crisis. The huge debt was caused by the costly tri-cameral and bantustan (or homeland) government structures, multiple separate racial institutions, huge police and military expenses (eg establishing kits-konstabels), military adventures into Angola (to support Savimbi) Botswana and Lesotho, uneconomical wasteful ‘border industries’, a huge foreign debt, falling gold price, devalued Rand, and loss of investor confidence. These factors created a growing national debt of over R240 billion in the late eighties.

The political vacuum created by the collapse of the Soviet Union was very opportune for the neo-liberals and far-sighted groups in Afrikaner business. Their political think-tanks analysed the new developments in consultation with intelligence agencies in western countries. Big business, who at first supported the state of emergencies, panicked as their investments suffered and profits plunged. They placed advertisements in the newspapers and sent a statement to the United nations calling for the abolition of apartheid. Business delegations ‘trekked’ to Lusaka, Dakar, Paris and elsewhere as western government and agencies organised many consultative meetings and conferences with leaders of the African National Congress (ANC).

OVERSEAS PRESSURES

Immense pressures were exerted on the apartheid government and some liberatory organisations by powerful overseas banks, investors, and neo-liberal governments to ward off the growing political economic crisis that could lead to a revolutionary situation in South Africa. A negotiated political deal was proposed between the moderate business sections of the apartheid regime and resistance movements to protect their South African investments and to service the public debt.

MODERATE GOVERNMENT OF NATIONAL UNITY

The proposed deal was to form a moderate government of national unity between opposing forces or enemies, under the watchful eyes of western governments, especially the British ambassador. This partnership would consist of ‘reformers’ within the National Party, the Afrikaner Broederbond and big business on the one hand and ‘moderates’ within the African National Congress, the Congress of South African Trade Unions and the South African Communist Party (later called the Tri-Partite Alliance), on the other hand. The ‘reformers’ would neutralise and marginalise the right wing Afrikaner Weerstand Beweging, police and military generals, while the ‘moderates’ would likewise neutralise and marginalise the principled uncompromising liberatory political organisations, social resistance movements like SACOS, left wing radicals, socialists, working class organisations, underground freedom fighters, militant trade unions and communists. This proposed moderate, non-racial, neo-liberal government of national unity would protect ‘white’ big capitalists and their historically accumulated private property. International capital wanted the moderate social elites of both Afrikaner nationalism (business and Broederbond strategic think tanks) and African nationalism to seek common ground to end the political impasse.25

The negotiating groups were opposed to the strong and principled internal stand that organically evolved within SACOS and other liberatory organisations for radical broad-based social and economic change. The Afrikaner elite were quite prepared to effectively hand over the running of parliament to a black elected majority (thus removing their political apartheid albatross) in order to concentrate on managing a bigger share of the economy and its profits.

RAMSAMY CALLS FOR FLEXIBILTY IN NEGOTIATIONS

In a phone call to the SACOS president in the mid-80’s, Sam Ramsamy (SANROC in London) called for greater flexibility and accommodation, ostensibly for trade-offs in future negotiations. The return of South Africa to international sport was seen by Sam Ramsamy as a tradeable commodity that was merely used as a pawn or bargaining chip in the political deal-making. This approach was rejected as unprincipled and against the non-racial liberatory policies of SACOS for the total isolation of racist sport till complete political social and economic equality was achieved. An immediate split resulted as it became clear that the principled struggles of SACOS was to be sacrificed by Ramsamy as a cheap pawn for a negotiated settlement that would allow the re-entry of South Africa into international sport as a trade-off for appeasing ruling class interests.

MAJOR ISSUES AT STAKE

The apartheid laws were to be abolished, equal political rights to be granted with a new constitution and elections held for a non-racial democracy. But major issues were at stake. Would:

(a) we still live in abject poverty with complete dominance by the rich white business?

  1. there be the equitable redistribution or control of land?
  2. there be the equitable sharing or broad based social utilisation of accumulated wealth that were in the hands of big business?

(d) there be the writing off of the huge financial debt?

  1. the cheap black labour and the (surplus) migratory labour system be abolished?
  2. a modern compulsory free non-racial world-class education system be introduced?
  3. it target the abolition of poverty, unemployment and the huge gulf between rich and poor to build an egalitarian society?
  4. it guarantee the building of durable quality houses for everybody to eliminate the squatter camps and social degradation?
  5. an affordable modern efficient health care and social welfare system be accessible by everybody?
  6. a corruption-free central and local government system be introduced that will ensure adequate quality service delivery and undo and abolish the inequalities and poor facilities in the ghettoes and locations (like sport)?

Were we being sold a big dummy in a blind-folded agreement just to get South Africa back into international sport but with no guarantee of future fundamental change?

ROLE OF SANROC IN LONDON

The focus soon shifted to SANROC and Sam Ramsamy who wanted the London office to be the sole representative of SACOS overseas, strongly contested and opposed the role of Dr. Dennis Brutus in the USA. In the usual dirty tricks campaign, correspondence that was allegedly sent from the USA to the SACOS leadership never arrived or was never tabled. These events gave rise to deep and acrimonious tensions in SACOS that eventually led to take-over bids and a major split in the organisation. A period of bitter in-fighting followed in order to capture the leadership of SACOS and its affiliates.

Sam Ramsamy convened the third International Conference Against Apartheid Sport (ICAAS) on 5-7 November 1987 in Harare, under the auspices of the Supreme Council for Sport in Africa (SCSA), the Association of National Olympic Committees of Africa (ANOCA), the South African Non-Racial Olympic Committee (SANROC) and the Zimbabwe Olympic Committee. SACOS was not directly informed and knowledge of it came indirectly via an unknown ICAAS representative in South Africa to a SACOS official. SACOS felt that attendance was essential at a meeting of such importance so near to South Africa. After consultation with Sam Ramsamy to seek clarification, a belated invitation was received insisting that only two delegates from SACOS be allowed to attend. This created suspicion, and further division as it was contrary to SACOS democratic consultative governance tradition. Of the the two selected SACOS delegates, the president was refused a passport and the secretary was only given a one month passport to Mauritius instead of to Zimbabwe. Two standby delegates, and strangely, three other SACOS members who had not been selected were eventually allowed to attend the conference.

MAKING ‘UNITY’ TALKS ACCEPTABLE

Correspondence from SANROC in London revealed that the racist S.A. Rugby Board of Dr Danie Craven was seeking an audience with the ANC. The ANC met with ICAAS chairman Fekrou Kidane and SANROC executive chairman Sam Ramsamy in Lusaka on 23/24 February 1989. The S.A. Rugby Union briefed SACOS on talks that took place between themselves, the ANC and the S.A. Rugby Board. Many in SACOS saw these meetings as condoning ‘unity’ talks and using it as a testing ground for a negotiated settlement.

Ramsamy’s cynical ploy of loudly attacking Apartheid sport and calling for its isolation was being used merely as a smoke screen while many secret and later public talks with the very discriminatory sports structures and their racist leaders were going on behind the back of SACOS. These talks however had to be made publicly acceptable.

FORMATION OF NATIONAL SPORTS COUNCIL

The emerging conflicts masterminded by Sam Ramsamy were to capture the leadership of SACOS or its affiliates and eventually led to the formation of a rival sports body, the National Sports Council (NSC) in January 1988. A SACOS delegation met with the NSC on 7 May 1988 where the later acknowledged SACOS as the only organisation representing non-racial sport and that it did not see itself as a rival to SACOS. Almost all the NSC officials were, in any case, existing members of SACOS. The NSC claimed they would support SACOS and augment its efforts to ” take sport to the townships”. But a report of a later meeting between the Border Council of Sport and the NSC stated that the NSC had decided unilaterally to go it alone and would have nothing further to do with SACOS. This was never directly communicated to SACOS.

But the NSC soon showed its true colours by creating chaos in the ranks of no-racial sport by splitting sports codes along party political lines. A proposal in table tennis to politically align with the Mass Democratic Movement (MDM) led to a split in the code. This proposal had to be withdrawn as it transgressed the international table tennis federation rules.

It soon became apparent that the strategies of SANROC in London and the NSC were identical in intent, to streamline a negotiated settlement for the easy and virtually unconditional return of South Africa to international sport and the Olympic Games. As a lucrative incentive, former ‘struggle’ officials were placed in charge of transformation programs, or to promote ‘quotas’ or ‘development players’ in representative teams. But this window dressing was not fundamental structural change in the basic economic power relations in society or sport.

EROSION OF UNITY AND STRENGTH OF SACOS

SANROC invited delegates from SACOS and most of its larger affiliates to a meeting on 5 November 1990 in Harare Zimbabwe. Delegates arrived with prepared mandates but found the meeting’s input, composition and purpose had been bureaucratically rigged by Sam Ramsamy. SACOS delegates raised principled objections to the presence of delegates, like Dr Danie Craven, from racist organisations to ‘debate’ the future of South African sport. But the meeting was completely rigged despite SACOS protests and the deal was as good as sealed.

The serious tensions and conflict of interests of the whole negotiation process completely undermined the morale, and eroded the unity and national strength of SACOS and destroyed the illustrious and principled role it was playing as the indigenously developed sports wing of the liberatory movement.

THE DEAL: RETURN TO INTERNATIONAL SPORT

INVESTORS SPEARHEAD RETURN TO INTERNATIONAL SPORT

The return of South Africa to international sport was spearheaded by big investors, international sports bodies and powerful business groups. They were linked to sport via media, marketing, advertising, tourism, transport and telecommunications and saw vast profitable opportunities for new investments, revenue generating international sports tours, lucrative world cup bids, television and media revenues, sports stadiums, hotels, property and golf club developments.

UNITY TALKS AND SELF-ENRICHMENT

Racist sports bodies in different codes seized the opportunity and called for national unity talks and mergers between the non-racial and the former racial bodies. With a background of tension and division in SACOS, these talks and mergers often took place in different sports codes without much foresight or depth of understanding of the issues at stake. Many formerly disadvantaged officials, especially from NSC ghost bodies with no infrastructure, lacked the necessary qualifications or experience and were ill equipped for top administration posts. They were initially used to re-inforce the “united” sport organisations bids for admission into international organisations and to provide proof of the ‘transformation’ process. This was often just a pretext for self-enrichment.

The mergers were often coupled with tempting offers of high salaried posts and fat perks in the new unified bodies to formerly disadvantaged officials and players in a new, highly commercialised sports administration. The new dispensation was well supported by generous government grants or substantial business sponsorships for rewarding posts in coaching, training, ‘transformation’ or ‘development’ structures. The new mercenary offers and developments were too good to be true for many poor officials who at first were in a dilemma of conscience, but it quickly gained legitimacy through extensive media support.

OLD ECONOMIC POWER AND CLASS RELATIONS

The “new South Africa” sports dispensation of “united” sports structures still suffered from the same old problems under a new guise. The apartheid laws were technically and legally abolished and a new non-racial, democratic constitution with equal rights instituted. Political organisations had been unbanned and political prisoners released. An accommodating social contract to plot the way forward with strong backing from the rich developed capitalist economies had been negotiated.

However. the national debt which had been incurred to enforce apartheid, now had to be repaid as double oppression. A repayment of such a massive debt would definitely retard South Africa’s future development for decades, while the advanced economies and other emerging countries of the world are racing ahead in economic, educational, technological, social and sporting development.

But the dominant capitalist system and existing economic control by big white business still remained intact with its huge chasm between the rich (mainly whites) and the poor (mainly black) urban, rural or migratory working class and peasants. Greater upward social mobility resulted in a narrow rapidly growing black middle class and a thin super-rich black empowerment elite that was beholden to, and dependent on powerful ‘white’ capital.26 There were no fundamental social changes in the basic social structure or economic power and class relations between the rich and the poor sports persons and in civil society. Neither was there broad-based empowerment or improvement of the poverty-stricken mass of the (sports) people and very little ‘trickle-down’ effect. Simultaneously, the rich ‘haves’ became richer and the poor ‘have-nots’ became poorer with nearly 50% of the (sports) population below the poverty line due to poverty or unemployment with very little chance of ever playing representative sport.

The government has belatedly recognised this danger (identified as the existence of two economies) to the long-term legitimacy and stability of the country’s political order and is attempting to do damage control.

MARGINALISATION OF THE BLACK MAJORITY AND WOMEN

Many of the new top national sports administrators came from a tradition of ethical democratic governance born during the history of struggle, with accountability to unions, clubs, grassroots players and communities. But sadly, many officials were not equipped nor skilled for the rapid changes to top well-paid national management posts. These officials fielded conflicting social and political interests, handled huge sums of money and operated under direct pressures from vested media, marketing and advertising interests. Sport was run in bureaucratic manner as a profit-making business. Many of the new black officials, with few exceptions, did not last long in the new contentious, highly competitive and hostile environment. Some newly appointed black presidents were just fronts while real power remained in the hands of former racist officials and powerful managing directors or coaches who enjoyed the real prestige (clearly visible in cricket and rugby). The result is that many national or provincial teams are still mainly white, while women, and black women in particular, are still marginalised.

DEVALUATION OF HISTORY AND TRADITIONS

The new dispensation caused the rapid decline of sports activities and the demise of organised community sport and clubs in many disadvantaged black areas. These factors were due to continued poverty, unemployment, homelessness, land hunger, violence, lack of basic education, poor township facilities and the degradation of township life. Highly competitive organised sport became too expensive for the poor due to the rising cost of modern sports equipment, destructive enforced club mergers, exorbitant membership, travelling and spectator fees. This was aggravated by thinly veiled racial or class prejudice from the elite (mainly from rich private schools) who feared to play in mainly black townships. Many of the top sporting matches (except soccer and some token matches) were relocated out of the black townships to modern multi-million sports facilities, mainly in elite formerly ‘whites-only’ residential areas.

Consequently, while previously rich whites-only clubs built on their past (racist) traditions and history, many clubs with long and rich histories of social struggle were compelled to collapse or combined to form hybrid mergers to ensure survival. This contributed to the devaluation, and sometimes demise of the history, ethos, traditions and contribution they had made to the fight for emancipation.

ELEVEN YEARS INTO DEMOCRACY

Sport is really a microcosm of society and is directly influenced by the values, dominant ideas, economic or military power and class relations in society. Sport reflects the progress or retardation in socio-economic growth and development, relative to its past and to other developed and emerging countries. After 11 years of non-racial democracy and despite strenuous efforts by the democratically elected non-racial government, major sports bodies are in severe crisis and most black sports persons still suffer severely in sport and society.

Many interacting factors have collectively retarded sport and destroyed the much vaunted but ineffective ‘transformation’, ‘black quotas in teams’ and ‘development player’ schemes. The government says that voluntary self-regulation or transformation in sports federations has failed miserably to produce representivity after eleven years of democracy. The Sports and Recreation Minister, Makhenkesi Stofile is losing patience, threatening to clean up the games and introduce a new law that will force them to transform and make sport more representative. But a new law, changes in public administration, better black quotas in teams, more efficient management or improved human resources development, will not alone solve the deep-seated underlying problems that retard sport and socio-economic development, which is causing deep resentment, alienation and mass demonstrations.

CONCLUSION

BOLD NEW REVOLUTIONARY STRATEGIES NEEDED

Bold, new, integrated and revolutionary strategies are needed to build an egalitarian society that will require determined political will-power and purposefulness to fundamentally change society and urgently deliver quality results within strict time frames. Some are listed below.

  1. Although the policy of white domination has been rejected and all racial laws abolished, the glaring social, sporting and economic (class) inequalities still persist and are visibly worsening for the vast majority of people except for a growing black middle class. This self-seeking middle class does not uplift the poor but merely acts as a social buffer to protect rich big business from the poor exploited working class. Real economic power and most of the county’s wealth is still in the hands of big (white) business in spite a small black empowerment elite that is mostly beholden to big capital.27 Almost 50% of the population live below the poverty line. The dominant ideas in society are still those of the capitalist exploitative ruling class. The unequal distribution or control of wealth must be radically changed to eliminate the massive power of big capital corporations and to build an egalitarian non-exploitative democracy. Correct the huge chasm between rich and poor and abolish the associated social and economic class barriers that perpetuate privilege and inequalities in society.
  2. Most of the prime land whether choice residential, fertile agricultural, mining, industrial and commercial areas are still controlled by the same cartels albeit with a black empowerment component and land restitution is mainly for poor subsistence farming. Solve the agrarian problem and land hunger by effectively providing viable redistribution or equitable social control of land. Introduce modern sustainable mechanized agricultural farming methods, education or training to improve crop quality, productivity and ecological awareness to preserve our resources for future generations. Prosperous farming communities will then enjoy better quality of life and improve sport in their leisure time.
  3. The migratory (essentially cheap, black surplus) labour system is still operative. Introduce a stable settled educated work-force with rapid competitive job creation in manufacturing, commerce or computer based service industries to eliminate unemployment and poverty. Introduce global-quality skills training with continuously improving competitive standards, improved production levels, income, standard of living and sporting achievements.
  4. Public education (as opposed to expensive private schools), is in a virtual state of collapse, especially the teaching of science, mathematics and modern technological skills (compared to global standards).28 A free compulsory modern top class education system with well trained and qualified teachers are essential for highly competitive management and production systems that power economic, social and sporting development in global competitions.
  5. Local municipalities have (at present) only 8% of the requisite skills or experienced staff and are collapsing in the face of basic service delivery, rapid changes of former ghettoes and essential forward planning for required new economic growth and social development. Rapid people-orientated skills training (with sustained mentoring and supervision), education of engineers and other professional or technical staff is required and must become a national priority for improved country-wide municipal service delivery.
  6. The grave existing housing shortage is growing exponentially as fewer houses are built annually relative to the yearly family formation or growing demand.29 Adequate durable quality housing stock must be rapidly built conforming strictly to National Building Regulations like health, fire, safety, long-life and structural requirements and serve as a kick-start for economic growth and job creation for the entire population.
  7. The provision of health, sports and civic amenities in former black areas remain poor, as hospital and clinic services have limited budgets, overworked staff or lack modern equipment.30 Provide adequate affordable well equipped fully staffed health services (with well-funded research to cure AIDS and other diseases), civic amenities and sports facilities.
  8. The high ethical standards, voluntary service, transparent accountable governance and sound moral values of the SACOS era have been destroyed with open mercenary greed, fraud, numerous corruption scandals, cronyism in job appointments and even bribed referees. Many public sports and public administration officials pay themselves unjustified astronomical salaries, rich bonus awards (in cash-strapped bodies), travel or entertainment perks or give contracts to pals. Administrative chaos and scandals abound over take-over bids as competing groups of elites fight over the financial spoils. This mindset is merely a cancerous continuation of the corrupt ways of the previous regime that is damaging the bonds of civil society. Ruthless measures are required to drastically eliminate all forms of corruption and greed from all government, public, private, business and sports bodies coupled with the promotion of exemplary sound democratic governance.

  1. The aspiring mandarins and fat-cats forget about performance management or quality service delivery. Poor administration is aggravated by rapid firing of coaches, outdated training methods (Staaldraad), old-style prejudices or values and racially skewed selection of representative teams. The malaise is reflected by poor and declining performances against international competition in rugby, soccer, cricket and particularly, the Olympic Games. High ethical standards of governance, public accountability and people- orientated development must be developed and even enforced.

(10)The high rate of formal unemployment (41%),31 job losses and poverty, coupled with social insecurity, violence, rapes, murders, increasing suicides, gangsterism, growing influence of druglords and overcrowded prisons (a training centre for gangs) alienate people and undermines social well- being. More than half of the population are marginalised from ever excelling in economic growth or sporting progress. Eradicate fear, violence, gangsterism, drug abuse and associated social problems in a decisive way so that the entire population own and drive the development processes, experience tangible social and economic prosperity and develop as enthusiastic interested stakeholders.

(11)Modern fully equipped sports facilities and top class sports developmentacademies should have been provided at provincial and national levels. Young talent must be identified, nurtured, trained and provided withintensive modern specialised training and coaching to world-class standards.

(12) Break down privilege, prejudice, class and economic barriers to build a prosperous, mutually co-operative, non-racial, cohesive united democratic nation. Create a sense of caring, sharing, people-centred development that promote friendliness, confidence, individual and social well being, visible change, prosperity, progress and patriotism in the entire population

The huge and growing chasm of economic and social inequality, poverty, class division, lack of continuous improvement, service delivery and socio-economic development in South Africa has resulted in increasing unrest, bigger demonstrations and deepening chaos in sport and society. Under these appalling conditions, the old SACOS motto of “NO NORMAL SPORT IN AN ABNORMAL SOCIETY” still rings particularly true and meaningful, in the quest for social and sporting justice.

FRANK A VAN DER HORST B.Sc. B.Sc.(Civil Engineer). Sec Teachers Dipl. Property Dev. Dipl. (All U.C.T.). B.Admin. (Hons) School of Government. M.Comm. (All U.W.C.).

Delegate from South African Hockey Board to SACOS: 1973-77.

Vice President: SACOS 1977-82.

President: SACOS 1982-88.

Chairperson: WESTERN PROVINCE COUNCIL OF SPORT 1970-82.

Convenor: SACOS NATIONAL SPORTS FESTIVALS 1982 and 1988

Director: SACOSPORT AND LIBERATION CONFERENCE 1983

Secretary: SOUTH AFRICAN HOCKEY BOARD 1970-89

NOTES

  1. Thistles Rugby Football Club was formed in 1891 in Cape Town, Spring Rose Rugby Football Club (Port Elizabeth) club in 1907 (although the SACOS president attended their centenary celebration of playing rugby in 1985) and Thistles Rugby Football Club in Kimberley in 1908. In 1897 the Griqualand-West Colonial Rugby Union extended an invitation to all disadvantaged rugby unions to a meeting in Kimberley. Newtonians Reunion 1948-2004: Commemorative Brochure.
  2. Inter-race boards were formed during the 1940’s and national federations were formed in the 1950’s in football, cricket, weight-lifting, athletics. The South African Table Tennis Board under Cassim Bassa was the first non-racial code in 1947 and gained affiliation to the International Table Tennis Federation and the African Table Tennis Federation. Archer, R. and Bouillon, A.: The South African Game.

  1. SASSA’s aims were: to co-ordinate non-white sport, to advance the cause of sport and the standard of sport among non-white sportsmen, to see that they and their organisations secure proper recognition [in South Africa] and abroad, and to do this on a non-racial basis. Archer, R. and Bouillon, A.: The South African Game.
  2. The African National Congress , Pan African Congress and the South African Communist Party were banned. Members of the Non European Unity Movement and other bodies were persecuted and banned. Many were arrested and jailed on Robben Island, Nylstroom prison or elsewhere.
  3. SANROC founding officials were: Dennis Brutus (president, banned from attending meetings), Rev B.L. E. Sigamoney (vice president), N. Rathnasamy (chairman), Reg Hlongwane (secretary), N. Solanki (treasurer). Photo in SACOS publication.
  4. President Rathinsamy was denied his passport, Reg Hlongwane fled abroad, Chris de Broglio (later SANROC secretary in London) left when government harassed his employers, George Singh was banned and placed under house arrest, and Dennis Brutus was banned in 1961, arrested in 1963 and left South Africa in 1966 for London to join Chris de Broglio and Reg Hlongwane to re-establish SANROC in exile. Archer, R. and Bouillon, A.: The South African Game & Booth, D.: The Race Game.
  5. The expulsion of the racist Football Association of South Africa from world governing soccer body FIFA in 1964, the refusal by theVerwoerdian government to allow blacks to tour as members of the New Zealand rugby team and the cancellation of the MCC cricket tour because of the inclusion of former ‘coloured’ South African Basil D’Oliveira, signalled the end of the participation of racist sportspersons in international events. See Sacosport and Liberation publication.
  6. SACOS recognised the international principles of the Olympic Charter especially its non-discriminatory and non-racial clauses and that its affiliates were the only South African sports associations to do so and to qualify for membership to their respective international sports body. But this can only be achieved with the total abolition of all racist laws and institutions when the country is freed from racial exploitation. Archer, R. and Bouillon, A.: The South African Game.
  7. Support for SACOS came from many individuals who were members of the African National Congress, Natal Indian Congress, South African Communist Party, Non European Unity Movement, the All African Convention, the Anti-Coloured Affairs Department , the Pan African Congress, the Black Consciousness Movement, The Teachers League of South Africa and other groupings.
  8. The early Dutch and British colonists introduced the discriminatory colour bar that was based on an exploitative political economy into South African society, culture and sport. They militarily subjugated the indigenous people (or imported and later freed slaves from the east), robbed them of their land (whites owned 77%) and used them as cheap black labour. The indigenous people were systematically herded into locations and ‘native reserves’ (later Homelands), through numerous wars of dispossession, the Great Trek and Land Acts. The reserve system became massive reservoirs of cheap unskilled labour for the white farms, factories and mines. An inhuman cheap migratory (surplus) labour system developed that was based on the ‘reserve system’, land hunger, pass laws, and influx control into the urban areas.
  9. Mantashe illustrated the politically strategic role that the militant Mine Workers Union played in carrying the important mining industry (gold, coal, diamonds, platinum, iron, uranium, manganese) which was monopolised by rich cartels (Anglo-American owned 52,5% of the JSE shares), Mining constituted a major pillar of the South African economy, a huge contributor to Gross Domestic Product (GDP), foreign investments and trade. The workers wanted a controlling say in the mining industry and thereby the economy of the country. This was an important terrain of struggle. Mantashe, G.: Lecture to Natal Council of Sport.
  10. The oppresive laws are the: Population Registration Act; Group Areas and Locations Acts; Pass Laws; Bantu, Coloured and Indian Education Acts; Reservation of Separate Amenities Act; Liquor Act; Criminal Law Amendment Act; Job Reservation; Influx Control; Urban Areas Consolidation Act; Migratory Labour Acts; Land Acts; Separate Departments of Bantu, Coloured and Indian Affairs Acts; Tricameral Parliament Acts; Police Security Acts; Detention (90 and later 180 days) and Banning laws; Prohibition of Mixed Marriages Act; the Extension of Universities Act (racially segregated universities or entry by permit under a quota system to white liberal or Afrikaans universities).
  11. The secretive Afrikaner Broederbond infiltrated and controlled all Afrikaner organisations, or promoted their members to gain further influence in sport, business, political bodies, churches, universities, education, trade unions, youth, student, government, the army, intelligence service, civic, and other civil society institutions. They promoted Afrikaner ‘nationalism’ by infusing cultural ‘superiority’, advancing the influence of the Afrikaans language and culture, simultaneously promoting racial separation, displaying racial arrogance, condescension, indignity and contempt towards blacks whom they regarded as inferior (even quoting the scriptures in justification). Wilkins, I. and Strydom, H.: The Super-Afrikaners, Inside the Afrikaner Broederbond.
  12. Hassan Howa had a distinguished role as president of SACOS. After the announcement of the Multi-National Sports policy, General Hendrik van den Bergh chief of the security police (BOSS) went to Hassan Howa’s residence in Heathfield to challenge him to meet Piet Koornhof (Minister of Sport) to discuss the new sports policy. Hassan Howa had just buried his daughter and, in a position of weakness, agreed and met Piet Koornhof in the Union Building in Pretoria. Hassan at first wanted to call Piet Koornhof’s bluff to play his proposed matches at national level only which would allegedly, over a period of time lead to provincial matches and then ultimately to club level. But the overwhelming majority of SACOS officials rejected the Multi-National sports policy outright. This policy change came at the time of the Soweto student revolt that spread nation-wide and created a sharp polarisation between the oppressed and the apartheid government. Hassan soon realised that international propaganda would be made out of the Multi-National sports policy, changed his position and rejected the entire concept.
  13. ‘No Normal sport in an Abnormal Society’ was originally formulated by A. Jordaan, a cricket official and popularised by SACOS.

  1. Others were Trevor Richards (Chairperson, Halt All Racist Tours – HART- New Zealand), Dr. John Domisse (Secretary, American Co-ordinating Committee on Africa), Frank Dobson (M.P. and representative of British Anti Apartheid Movement), Jean-Louis Sagor-Durauroux (Representative, Mouvement contre le Racisme, et pour l’amitie entre les people, Paris) and Antoine Buillion (French Anti Apartheid Movement),
  2. The supporting organisations include the National Council of Churches New Zealand, Syndicat General De L’Education Natinale (Paris), New Zealand Federation of Labour (Auckland), Federation Miscellaneous Workers of Australia (Melbourne), Anti-Apartheid Movements in Ireland, France, New Zealand and Austria, HART (Halt All Racist Tours) that flour-bombed the Springbok New Zealand rugby test match amid massive protests, CARE (Citizen Association for Racial Equality, in Australia), ACCESS (American Coordinating Committee for Equality in Sport and Society), SANROC ( overseas representative of SACOS), Stop All Racial Tours (SART) that demonstrated night and day at all hotels, buses and venues where the Springbok rugby team stayed or played in Britain resulting in major demoralisation and test rugby defeats), CARE (Campaign Against Racial Expliotation), SACARE (South Australian Campaign Against Racial Exploitation Inc.), Anti-Tour Union Action, Coalition Against The Tour, Comite Olympique Camerounais, South African Liberation Centre (Sydney), Foundation for Aboriginal and Islander Research Action (Brisbane), South Africa Support Campaign (Sydney), Olympic Committee United Arab Republic, Indian Golf Union, Sports Federation of India, Journalists’ Federation of India, International Campaign Against Apartheid Sport, Holland Committee on Southern Africa, Comite Contre Le Colonialisme Et L’Apartheid, Movement Anti-Apartheid CAO, Centrale des Federations du Sport de Belgique, Commonwealth Conferences, Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU), and the National Council of Trade Unions (NACTU).
  3. SACOS was supported by highly influential personalities or activists like Professor Dr. Dennis Brutus, Jerome Bibulb, Richard Lapchick, Chris de Broglio, Peter Hain, Jean Claude Ganga (SACOS patron), Sam Ramsamy (SACOS patron), Amadou Lamine Ba (SACOS patron), Tom Newnham, Abraham Ordia (SACOS patron), Trevor Richards, Ivor Montagu, Antoine Bouillon, Rene Moustard, Kader Asmal, Wilfred Brutus, Isiah Stein, John Minto, Jim Gale, R. Hogan, James Walker, Robert Weatherall, Helen Shentone, G.H. Andersen, Omar Cassim, Jasmat Dhiraj, Steve Tobias, Donald Woods.
  4. The International Congress for Rugby Media 1983 was to be hosted by the S.A. Rugby Board and organised by Tommie Campbell from Dublin, Ireland and included as speakers: Dr D.H. Craven, President S.A. Rugby Board; Dr G van N Viljoen, Minister of National Education; Minister J.C. Heunis, Minister of Constitutional Development; R.F.(Pik) Botha, Minister of Foreign Affairs; R.E. Louw, Administrator of the Cape; and collaborators C.C.A. Loriston, President of S.A. Rugby Federation, C.G. Mdyesha, President of S.A. Rugby Association; Rev A. Hendrickse, Leader of the Labour Party.

  1. Numerous calls were made to oppose the apartheid government’s New Deal, called the Koornhof Bills and the Constitutional Proposals in 1982 which aimed to weaken the revitalised workers’ movement by drastically restricting the movement of black workers and to create three separate racist chambers of parliament, the ‘white’ House of Parliament, one for ‘coloureds’ and one for ‘indians’. An united front was formed to oppose this New Monster and its collaborators by over 40 organisations in the Western Cape. These include Wepcos, local SACOS officials including its President and Secretary, many sports bodies, the Cape Federation of Civics, Cape Action League, Western Cape Civic Association, Cape Housing Action League, Thornhill Residents Association, trade unions, ANC women’s organisations, cultural bodies and a range of community organisations from Gugulethu, Nyanga and elsewhere. This united front, the Disorderly Bill Action Committee, eventually split and led to the formation of the Cape Action League and the United Democratic Front in the Western Cape. On the initiative of Dr Allan Boesak, President of the World Alliance of Reformed Churches, the latter combined with similar resistance fronts in the Eastern Cape, Durban and Johannesburg, which led to the launch of the United Democratic Front in 1983. Dr Allan Boesak, Dullah Omar, Trevor Manuel, Cheryl Carolus and SACOS finance secretary Krish Mackerdhuj were key figures at its launch. SACOS President and other officials were guest speakers at many later UDF campaign meetings against the New Deal. SACOS did not affiliate nor align to any political body.
  2. In 1987 the event was hosted by Western Province Council of Sport and the Sportsperson of the Year was Adeeb Abrahams (soccer) and runner-up Richard Dolley (men’s hockey). In 1988 this competition was hosted by Border Council of Sport and the Sports person of the year was Khaya Majola (rugby), with runner-up Duncan Crowie (soccer).
  3. During the third state of emergency in 1987, SACOS officials met or addressed many meetings of a wide range of resistance organisations, amongst others:

Promotion of SACOS sport in many townships, e.g. Gugulethu 3 July 1987.

Addressed many UDF meetings with Dr. Alan Boesak, Dullah Omar, et al.

Met United Democratic Front (UDF) on 19 September1987 in Johannesburg.

Met Azanian Peoples Organisation (AZAPO) 20 Sept. 1987 Johannesburg.

Attended the launch of National Union of Metal Workers of South Africa

(NUMSA) on 22-24 May 1987 in Johannesburg.

Attended the second congress of the Congress of South African Trade Unions

(COSATU) 15/17 July 1987 in Johannesburg on invitation from Jay Naidoo.

Met with National Council of Trade Unions (NACTU) on 20 September 1987.

Had discussions with officials of UDF, COSATU, AZAPO, and NACTU on

19-20 September 1987 in Johannesburg.

Met officials of South African Youth Congress (SAYCO), South African

National Civics Organisation (SANCO) and National Association of

Democratic Lawyers (NADEL).

Met with New Unity Movement (NUM) on 21 June 1987 in Cape Town.

Attended joint meeting with South African Tertiary Institutions Sports

Associations (SATISA) and SATISCO on 27 June 1987.

Met with Workers Organisation for Socialist Action (WOSA).

Met with Federation of Cape Civics Associations.

Met National Union of Mineworkers: Gwede Mantashe and Cyril Ramaphosa.

Met with Pan African Congress in Umthatha, Mdantsane, Graaff Reinet,Langa.

Supported many Release Mandela marches and campaigns.

Gave mass support to trade union strikes that called for boycotts of firm’s products.

  1. White rugby players, brothers Cheeky and Valence Watson who were both in contention for Springbok colours, left the racist S.A. Rugby Board of Danie Craven to play in the non-racial Kwazekele Rugby Union (KWARU). They refused to apply for racial permits to enter New Brighton location in Port Elizabeth and were arrested several times or had to dodge police to enter the township for rugby matches. Archer, R. and Bouillon, A.: The South African Game & Booth, D.: The Race Game.
  2. The funeral of Tatius Sondlo in the mid-80’s, a community leader and SACOS cricket and rugby official in Queenstown who was detained for 363 days and house arrested many times, was a bizarre sight as the mass funeral service was banned from allowing any SACOS or community speakers. Even the presiding minister was ordered not to make any political tributes. Groups of SACOS officials, one after the other, lined up round the coffin during the church service, to pay their last, silent respects. Tatius Sondlo had a hero’s funeral as the long procession of mourners was escorted from the church right to the burial site by a procession of police caspirs (military armoured vehicles) with guns drawn.

SACOS officials attended many other mass funerals of cadres killed by police – like the Cradock Four, Griffiths Mxenge, Victoria Mxenge, East London 31, Athlone Trojan Horse (armed police hid in container boxes on trucks, emerging to shoot students – mourners were teargassed and dropped the coffins in Voortrekker road) and Bonteheuwel Three (mourners were teargassed and fled into the church for safety).

  1. The negotiated settlement pattern broadly followed the model of political transition to democracy theory identified by Adam Przeworski in ‘Democracy in the Market’. Transition begins when there is a mutually perceived sense of stalemate that may lead to bloody civil war and chaos. A pact is eventually formed between elites of former enemies to form a partnership in a government of national unity. The pact in South Africa was market based on capitalist neo-liberal policies, dictated by western governments and the global economy as the only acceptable solution. This new order ensured that entrenched power holders, especially the white bourgeoisie in conjunction with its smaller weaker emerging black counterpart (the newly promoted Black Economic Empowerment groups), maintain a veto over the pace, content and institutional form of the new democracy. The existing white business power holders retain and increase their economic control over the levers of society through property, business, trade, investments (both local and abroad especially in Africa), and the bureaucracy. These collective organisations are capable of disciplining and coercing the behaviours of their constituents and persuade the rank and file to be patient and wait for reforms to bear fruit. Many analysts have accepted that South Africa’s ‘political miracle’ was purchased at a price of ensuring the survival of one of the world’s most unequal capitalist systems. The ‘historic compromise’ between the ANC and the apartheid Nationalist party (now buried) placed economic power in the hands of the corporate white elite who co-opted a small group of black elite economic empowerment groups to act as buffer between itself and a sea of black poverty.
  2. Even today, the top 20% of the population (mainly rich white families and a very thin layer of the super rich emerging black entrepreneurs) owns a whopping 50% of the economy while the lower 20% (mainly the historically disadvantaged blacks) owns only 4%. The Gini coefficient of 0,57 in 2001 suggest that inequality within the African community is rising. Trevor Manuel, Minister of Finance, in Mail &Guardian 17-22 September 2004 p32.
  3. Direct black ownership of assets on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE) is at 1%; black control is at 3%; black participation in top and senior management in the private sector is about 6%. Business Day, 4 November 2004.
  4. Educational opportunities are poor and skewed in favour of the rich, with a national 48% drop-out rate between grades 6 and 12, a crippling lack of modern mathematics and science education (especially for blacks) that seriously retards the development of technologically skilled labour and industrial expertise.
  5. New family units requiring houses are formed due to rapid rural to urban movement (urbanization), immigration from Africa and rest of world, a natural population increase and divorces. Inferior low cost houses often have cracks, leaks and short life-spans that is a waste of capital and people’s savings. They seldom conform to the mandatory health, safety, fire and structural requirements of the government National Building Regulations. Huge squatter settlements are increasing as people try to avoid paying rates, taxes or municipal charges.
  6. The spread of malnutrition, the AIDS pandemic (5 million cases in South Africa), tuberculosis, drug abuse and infant mortalities are worsened by polluted rivers and underground water supplies, often through lack of, or poorly managed sewerage outlets, causing preventable diseases like typhoid.

31 A SA jobless-study identified as many as 41% unemployed. Cape Argus

Wed. September 29 2004 p5.

REFERENCES:

Archer, R. and Bouillon, A. 1982. The South African Game: Sport and Racism. Zed Press, London N1 9DN.

Booth, D. 1998. The Race Game: Sport and Politics in South Africa. Frank Cass London IG2 7HH.

Community publications e.g. Benoni Students Movement, Free Azania, Federation of Cape Civic Associations, Grassroots, Muslim News, Solidarity, Indicator.

Przeworski, A. 1991. Democracy in the Market. Cambridge University Press. Cambridge.

SACOS Minutes of Executive, General Meetings and Biennial Conferences.

SACOS, national and provincial council of sports affiliate’s publications.

SACOS M.N.Pather Memorial lectures

SACOSPORT NEWS: OFFICIAL MOUTHPIECE OF THE SACOS

SACOSPORT AND LIBERATION CONFERENCE publications 1983

SACOS NATIONAL SPORTS FESTIVAL BROCHURES 1982 & 1988

Whannel, G. 1983. Blowing the whistle: The politics of sport. Pluto Press London NW5 2RX

Wilkins, I. and Strydom, H. 1978. The Super-Afrikaners. Jonathan Ball Publishers, Johannesburg.

Woods, D.1981. Black and White. Ward River Press, Dublin.

THE SOUTH AFRICAN COUNCIL ON SPORT (SACOS): THE SPORTS WING OF THE LIBERATION MOVEMENT

DEVELOPMENT OF NON-RACIAL SPORT 1

SACOS: A RESPONSE OF OPPRESSED SPORTS BODIES                               1

FORMATION OF NON-RACIAL SPORTS BODIES                                              1
PIONEERS OF NON-RACIAL SPORT                                                                 2

FORMATION AND GROWTH OF SACOS                                                           3

SOCIAL AND ECONOMIC SETTING OF SPORT 5

VOLUNTARY OFFICIALS                                                                                  5

NATIONAL OPPRESSION, CLASS EXPLOITATION AND SPORT                       5

UNIQUE ROLE OF SACOS IN RESISTANCE MOVEMENT 8

1976 STUDENT REVOLT                                                                                  8

BROEDERBOND CONTROL OF SPORT AND SOCIETY                                     8

SACOS WARNED                                                                                            8

DOUBLE STANDARDS RESOLUTION                                                               9

“NO NORMAL SPORT IN AN ABNORMAL: SOCIETY”                                       9

INTERNATIONAL SUPPORT: ISOLATION OF RACIST SPORT                                                                                  10

LOCAL AND INTERNATIONAL BOYCOTT OF APARTHEID SPORT                  10

RECOGNITION AND SUPPORT FOR SACOS                                                  11

SACOS AND LIBERATION CONFERENCE 11

INVITATION TO A RACIST RUGBY CONFERENCE                                          11

SACOSPORT AND LIBERATION CONFERENCE                                              12

SACOS NATIONAL SPORTS FESTIVALS, LECTURES AND AWARDS             12

STRATEGIC PAPERS                                                                                     13

APARTHEID IN CRISIS: A NEGOTIATED SETTLEMENT 14

AGGRESSIVE NON-COLLABORATION                                                       14

UNITED FRONT STRATEGY                                                                       14

INCREASED STATE VIOLENCE                                                                  15

HUGE NATIONAL DEBT                                                                              17

OVERSEAS PRESSURES                                                                           17

MODERATE GOVERNMENT OF NATIONAL UNITY                                      18

RAMSAMY CALLS FOR FLEXIBILITY IN NEGOTIATIONS                           18

MAJOR ISSUES AT STAKE                                                                        19

ROLE OF SANROC IN LONDON                                                                  20

MAKING ‘UNITY’ TALKS ACCEPTABLE                                                      20

FORMATION OF NATIONAL SPORTS COUNCIL                                         21

EROSION OF UNITY AND STRENGTH OF SACOS                                       22

THE DEAL: RETURN TO INTERNATIONAL SPORT 22

INVESTORS SPEARHEAD RETURN TO INTERNATIONAL SPORT               22

UNITY TALKS AND SELF-ENRICHMENT                                                     22

OLD ECONOMIC POWER AND CLASS RELATIONS                                   23

MARGINALISATION OF THE BLACK MAJORITY AND WOMEN                   24

DEVALUATION OF HISTORY AND TRADITIONS                                         25

ELEVEN YEARS INTO DEMOCRACY                                                           25

CONCLUSION 26

BOLD NEW REVOLUTIONARY STRATEGIES NEEDED                                 26

NOTES 30

REFERENCES 38

THE SOUTH AFRICAN COUNCIL ON SPORT (SACOS): THE SPORTS WING OF THE LIBERATION MOVEMENT

FRANK A. VAN DER HORST

DEDICATED TO THE MILLIONS OF NON-RACIAL SPORTS-PERSONS

THROUGHOUT SOUTH AFRICA FOR THEIR COURAGE,

DETERMINATION AND SACRIFICE IN THE STRUGGLE FOR TOTAL

FREEDOM IN SPORT AND SOCIETY

SPORT AND LIBERATION CONFERENCE

EAST LONDON HEALTH RESOURCE CENTRE

14 – 16 OCTOBER 2005

NATIONAL HERITAGE AND CULTURAL STUDIES CENTRE (NAHECS)

UNIVERSITY OF FORT HARE

3 Comments »

  1. scary games…

    [...]The Role of Sports in Society « newritings[...]…

    Trackback by scary games — May 8, 2012 @ 11:59 pm | Reply

  2. NICE TO REMINIS AND REMEMBER WHAT WE AS SPORTSPERSONS WENT THRU. KEEP IT UP
    DEREK TITUS (derek.titus@netcare.co.za)

    Comment by Derek — August 14, 2012 @ 2:32 pm | Reply

  3. What’s up colleagues, nice article and nice urging commented at this place, I am actually enjoying by these.

    Comment by Tony — May 17, 2013 @ 11:15 pm | Reply


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