Press Esc to close
Wednesday 04 May 2016
News updated at 1:37 AM IST
Weather
Max: 36.6°C
Min : 24.7°C
In Bengaluru
Sunny day

Mandela was a Communist, claims historian's book

London, Dec 9, 2012, PTI:

Nelson Mandela, South Africa’s anti-apartheid icon, was a member of the Communist party and held a senior rank in the organisation, a British historian has claimed in a new book.

In his new book “External Mission: The ANC in Exile, 1960-1990”, Professor Stephen Ellis, has unearthed fresh evidence that during his early years as an activist, Mandela did hold senior rank in the South African Communist Party, or SACP.

The former South African president now 94-years-old, who won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1993, has always denied being a member of the South African branch of the movement, which mounted an armed campaign of guerrilla resistance along with the African National Congress (ANC). According to Ellis, Mandela joined the SACP to enlist the help of the Communist superpowers for the ANC’s campaign of armed resistance to white rule. As evidence of Mandela’s Communist party membership, Ellis cites minutes from a secret 1982 SACP meeting, discovered in a collection of private papers at the University of Cape Town, in which a veteran former party member, the late John Pule Motshabi, talks about how Mandela was a party member some two decades before.

In the minutes, Motshabi, is quoted as saying: “There was an accusation that we opposed allowing Nelson and Walter (Sisulu, a fellow activist) into the Family (a code word for the party) ... we were not informed because this was arising after the 1950 campaigns (a series of street protests). The recruitment of the two came after.” The minutes from the 1982 SACP meeting, said Ellis, offered more reliable proof. “This is written in a closed party meeting so nobody is trying to impress or mislead the public,” Ellis said.

On Friday, a spokesman for the Nelson Mandela Foundation said: “We do not believe that there is proof that Madiba (Mandela’s clan name) was a Party member ... The evidence that has been identified is comparatively weak in relation to the evidence against, not least Madiba’s consistent denial of the fact over nearly 50 years”.


Go to Top

Photo Gallery
Pranab Mukherjee shows a silver statue of Sai Baba gifted to him by veteran actor Manoj Kumar...

Pranab Mukherjee shows a silver statue of Sai Baba gifted to him by veteran actor Manoj Kumar...

Policemen arrest TET aspirants for protesting against UP government for their recruitment...

Policemen arrest TET aspirants for protesting against UP government for their recruitment...

A truck loaded with LPG cylinders overturns after the driver lost his control at Ambari area...

A truck loaded with LPG cylinders overturns after the driver lost his control at Ambari area...

A girl arrives to collect water from an almost dried pond at a village near Allahabad...

A girl arrives to collect water from an almost dried pond at a village near Allahabad...

Indian coast guard personnel participate in a mock drill during the National Maritime Search...

Indian coast guard personnel participate in a mock drill during the National Maritime Search...

A hen along with its featherless chicks in Dimapur, Nagaland on Tuesday...

A hen along with its featherless chicks in Dimapur, Nagaland on Tuesday...

Firefighters trying to extinguish a fire at Simhastha Mahakumbh in Ujjain...

Firefighters trying to extinguish a fire at Simhastha Mahakumbh in Ujjain...

Bollywood actor Jacqueline Fernandez with Siddharth Malhotra during a launch event...

Bollywood actor Jacqueline Fernandez with Siddharth Malhotra during a launch event...

Winner of Best Actor award Amitabh Bachchan and Best Actress award Kangna Ranaut...

Winner of Best Actor award Amitabh Bachchan and Best Actress award Kangna Ranaut...

Flames trail Danica Patrick's car after she crashed into Matt Kenseth...

Flames trail Danica Patrick's car after she crashed into Matt Kenseth...