On the eve of the independence of the Transkei, the South African Minister of Information, Mr.
GV: Information Minister seated with reporter.
SV and CU: Minister talking with reporter.
REPORTER:Mr. Mulder, tonight the Transkei becomes independent, isn't it a great disappointment to the South African Government that the counties of the outside world are refusing to recognise the Transkei?
MULDER: I won't say it's a disappointment in the respect, that we expected it as a matter of fact, we had notion of the fact that very few countries would recognise the Transkei previously. I think the sad story is this, that here we have a country, the size of Denmark or Holland, the size of Denmark or Holland, population of three point one million people, bigger in area than more than twenty full-fledged members of the United States with a budget bigger than more-or-less twenty full-fledged members, not to be acknowledged by the outside world for the simple reason that it gets its freedom by a method or a policy which they do not approve of. Now, in all sincerely is it fair to discriminate against the blacks of Transkei because you don't like us and our policy? I think that's unfair.
REPORTER: Some people would say, wouldn't they, that the Transkei is not genuinely independent, that so much of its policies and actions will be determined by South Africa that it can't truly be regarded as independent. How would you answer that?
MULDER: I would answer that it is totally untrue. As a matter of fact the Transkei will become independent tonight - midnight - totally independent, a sovereign African state, the fiftieth - which I think is quite coincidental - state number fifty in Africa, totally free, totally independent, as sovereign, as independent as at least - the United Kingdom, Nigeria, or Uganda.
REPORTER: Angola and Mozambique have now both become independent, it looks very likely that Rhodesia will become independent within a couple of years too. How is that changing South Africa's attitude towards unfriendly black states?
MULDER: You know, I think the reality is this, that South Africa does not see Africa as a foreign area or an area from where threats may come. South Africa is part and parcel of the African set-up, so we have learned through history and through time to live with these neighbours. And as a matter of fact it wold be unrealistic to expect to not have these people as our neighbours. And I think we have done the correct thing. For example, there's Mozambique as such, we need to acknowledge the fact that there is a new government, and as a matter of fact in certain respects we are cooperating with the Mozambique Government to their and our advantage at the moment.
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Background: On the eve of the independence of the Transkei, the South African Minister of Information, Mr. Connie Mulder, was in London, U.K., for a series of speaking engagements. He has been Minister of Information for the past five years, and is generally regarded as one of the most influential members of the South African Cabinet. His name has even been mentioned as a likely successor to the Prime Minister, Mr. Vorster.
SYNOPSIS: On Monday (25 October) Visnews reporter, Paul Toulmin-Rothe, questioned Mr. Mulder about world reaction to Transkei's independence.