Full text: Forced labour in Africa

fie of five pounds in respect of any calendar year in which 
he has not rendered any service:under a contract of service, 
or worked as an artisan, for not less than three months. 
Chiefs, headmen, ministers of religion and teachers, are 
excepted, also physical and mental defectives, and those 
who have three sons working. The Native has to prove 
that he is not liable. Non-payment of the tax if due is 
deemed to be an offence, and renders the defaulting 
Native liable to imprisonment without cancellation of his 
liability to pay. 
It should further be noted that under the Colour Bar 
Act almost any field of labour can be shut out from the 
Native labourer. It is therefore evident that the inten- 
tion of the Bill is to curtail the field of employment for 
Natives and to compel them to enter and remain in the 
service of European employers. This is made still more 
clear by the fact that Ministers have declared their inten- 
tion to bring the Colour Bar Act into operation and to 
specify certain kinds of work which Natives shall be 
forbidden to perform. 
The Bill as it stands affects numbers of Native students 
at Training Institutions, and such classes as Native lawyers 
and doctors are not exempt from its provisions; but 
although published it has not been gazetted, and possibly 
it will not be heard of again. 
Pass Laws. 
The legal position with respect to the Pass Laws of the 
Union is that their application can be modified or with- 
drawn by the Department of Native Afiairs without 
reference to Parliament (cf. Native Administration Act, 
No. 38 of 1927, Sections 28 (1), 36). Furthermore, the 
Department favours simplification to the extent that 
public opinion will allow. Representations in this 
direction to the Government are therefore of little use, 
and public opinion has to be educated. 
There is little room for doubt that the Pass Laws are 
capable of being used as a means of indirect compulsion 
to labour. Attention is called to the findings of the Cape 
Town European-Bantu Conference of 1920 (see Report, 
i “7

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