There was conflict in the Tokazi location in the Usutu Area, Nongoma District, Natal [now Kwazulu-Natal], around Bantu Affairs (BA), betterment and the role played by Paramount Chief (PC) Cyprian Dinizulu.

The PC was initially reluctant to take a stand against BA, and he requested three indunas (headmen) to speak the community regarding these matters. Despite this, the community rejected the BA. There was also opposition to betterment-related resettlement. Initially opposition to relocation was total, but “the government retaliated by denying the community the right to plough their arable allotments.”

PC Dinizulu then accepted betterment and the community was obliged to move to a new area. However, “so intense was the resistance in Zululand that King Cyprian, who had accepted the system, had to flee to Swaziland when Zulu peasants from the Thomas district of Nongoma threatened to kill him for siding with the BA.”

Arising from this conflict, banishment orders were issued on 11 December 1959 for Nelson Zulu and his cousin PhikinkaniZulu. Documentation related to their banishment orders, from Usutu Area, Nongoma District, Natal [now Kwazulu-Natal],described them as being against betterment, convening regular meetings in which they conspired and encouraged others to act against these measures and having no regard for the Chief’s orders. Their activities and attitudes also questioned the Chief’s authority.

Nelson Zulu was accused of regularly attending meetings in Durban and Johannesburg, and ofgetting inspiration from ‘vyandiggesinde’ (hostile) whites.  However,the cousins were nowhere to be found and the banishment orders could not be served on them.

New orders then had to be prepared and it was noted that since it was possible that they might employ this tactic again, the new orders were produced to avoide lengthy court processes.The Zulu’s werebanished to Vryburg District, [then Northern Cape, now North West Province].

Nelson Zulu spent twelve years atDriefontein Native Trust Farm, Vryburg District, leaving behind in Nongoma, Natal, three wives and nine children. In 1967, he was banished to Logabati, Gensea Bantu Reserve in the Kuruman district, [Northern Cape Province] reportedly for attacking a fellow banished man with a knife and being charged for assault.

He was released from banishment in January 1971 for a year, which was then extended to January 1972 for a second year. With severe restrictions placed on him, his banishment order withdrawn on 13 October 1972.


• Contribution by Professor S. Badat on Banishment, Rhodes University, 2012. From the book, Forgotten People - Political Banishment under Apartheid by Professor S. Badat

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