A South African Bantu mother of 11 children may soon be separated from her family under a Government order banishing her to a remote area of the north-western Cape. 41-year-old Mrs.
A South African Bantu mother of 11 children may soon be separated from her family under a Government order banishing her to a remote area of the north-western Cape. 41-year-old Mrs. Elizabeth Mafeking, president of the South African Canning Worker's Union, and vice-president of the Women's League of the African National Congress, has lived and worked in Paarl, near Cape Town, with her husband and family for 32 years. Mrs. Mafeking's children are aged between two months and 21 years. She hopes to take her baby with her to the Native Trust farm at Southey, Vryburg.
Now she faces an "indefinite" exile because her continued presence in Paarl "was injurious for the peace, order and good administration of Natives in the Paarl district."
She believes she has been exiled for leading demonstrations protesting against the issue of identity papers for African women, and other active trade union work. There is no legal appeal against her detention - although a plea to a Bantu Minister resulted in a week's stay against banishment, until November 9.
Her husband, a GBP4 a week canning worker, will stay at Paarl to look after the family. "This is a hard knock", said Mrs. Mafeking. "I was ready to go to jail to help my people, but this is unexpected. What will my children do without me? I shall probably never see them again".