Women’s Day

South Africa commemorates Women’s Month in August as a tribute to the thousands of women who marched to the Union Buildings in Pretoria on 9 August 1956 in protest against the extension of Pass Laws to women.

The march was led by four women: Lillian Ngoyi, Helen Joseph, Rahima Moosa and Sophia Williams De Bruyn, who delivered petitions to the then Prime Minister JG Strijdom’s office at the Union Buildings. Women throughout the country had put their names to these petitions, with 100 000 signatures, indicating their anger and frustration at having their freedom of movement restricted by the hated official passes.

The pass laws required South Africans defined as "black" by The Population Registration Act to carry a '"pass," an internal passport that severely restricted their movement. Each "pass" designated specific urban/metropolitan areas in which the bearer was authorized to live, work and travel. Within such areas, black South Africans were required to carry and produce their "pass" at all times, and were arrested if without one.

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45 Murton Road, Rylands Estate 7764, Cape Town, South Africa
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Email: info@nakhlistan.org.za | Fatima Allie - Nakhlistan Public Relations Officer | Cell: 082 066 3353