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What had the economy depended on?

For decades, the economy had depended on black workers who were barred from forming trade unions.


What did the increase in labour demands have on trade unions and businesses? (2)

As the demand for labour increased,

- Workers began to voice their demands for legally-recognized unions.
- Business leaders also realized the government need for a reliable form of communication with worker demands.


What was the Wiehahn Commission?

An appointed committee, the Wiehahn Commission, recommended in 1979 that black trade unions should be legally recognized.


What was happening in terms of job reservation?

At the same time, the policy of job reservation was also relaxed. After this, union membership expanded rapidly, from only 57 000 registered black members in 1980 to over half a million by 1984.


Which trade unions were among the first to emerge?

New unions were formed, such as the Federation of South African Trade Unions (FOSATU) in 1979 and the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) in 1982.


Why was COSATU formed?

Union leaders recognized that for the unions to become a powerful political force, they would need to unite and develop a national base. This happened in 1985 when the Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU) was formed.


Did all unions join COSATU?

Most, but not all, of the existing trade unions joined COSATU, which initially represented over 500 000 workers.


What was Inkatha?

Another smaller trade union was UWUSA, which was linked to Inkatha, the Zulu political and cultural organization.


How did these workers in trade unions demonstrate against?

These workers demonstrated their commitment to working for change in the numerous strikes that took place in response to the economic recession of the 1980s.


What was one issue in the trade unions focused on?

One issue on which the unions focused was the pass system.


Who did the trade unions appeal to?

The unions appealed to employers to oppose the government's heavy-handed implementation of the laws. Although employers were reluctant to become involved in township issues, by 1984 the unions were applying increased pressure on employers. As a result, some powerful employers urged the government to abolish the pass laws.


So the growing power of the ____ was a key reason for the scrapping of the pass laws in 1986.



It was clear by the 1980s that the South African economy was dependent on ____ _____.

Black Labour


What old system in terms of black labour was not working?

The old apartheid Bantustan policy, by which black workers were kept in the homelands and only allowed temporary employment in the rest of South Africa as migrant labourers, was not working


Who did employers in manufacturing industries need to hire?

Employers in manufacturing industries required a stable and skilled labour force and this meant employing blacks as permanent labour.


When did it become clear that the economy was dependent on black labour?

This became clear in the 1980s when the manufacturing sector stopped growing. One of the reasons was the lack of a stable labour force.