n Journal for Contemporary History - Plaaslike en internasionale verset teen apartheid in Suid-Afrikaanse sport gedurende die tagtigerjare

Volume 29, Issue 2
  • ISSN : 0258-2422
  • E-ISSN: 2415-0509



The implementation of apartheid legislation by the National Party (NP) in 1948 led to the establishment of similar enforceable structures within South African sport. This was met by much resistance, both inside and outside South Africa. The formation and development of various international and local anti-apartheid organisations with a broad interest in South African sport led to conflict with the NP government about its sports policy which promoted racial segregation. By the 1980s, the NP's policy on sport had, mostly due to external pressure, changed considerably, but not enough in the eyes of the organisations fighting apartheid in South African sport. An orchestrated attempt to rid South African sport from its apartheid legacy intensified during the 1980s, with the United Nations, the Organisation of African Unity, SACOS and SANROC leading the way. These organisations would go to the extreme to show that separate development in sport, as well as inequality in the South African society, was not acceptable. The extended pressure on South African sport by these organisations, in adherence with anti-apartheid structures and organisations throughout the world, eventually led to unity talks between various stakeholders in South African sport at the end of the 1980s, with far-reaching positive effects for South African sport.

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