Sanctions

90s01. Southern Africa Coalition Lobby

90s01. Southern Africa Coalition Lobby

More than 4,000 people asked their MPs to support the maintenance of sanctions against South Africa on 27 February 1990. The lobby achieved a record coverage, with constituents lobbying 495 of 523 MPs sitting for English constituencies and a majority of Scottish and Welsh MPs. The day before Nelson Mandela’s release, Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher announced that Britain would end its limited restrictions on new investment and tourism. The lobby was organised by the Southern Africa Coalition, a broad-based grouping of church organisations, trade unions, overseas aid agencies and the AAM.

pic9003. Lobby of Parliament, February 1990

pic9003. Lobby of Parliament, February 1990

Four thousand people from nearly every parliamentary constituency in Britain lobbied Parliament on 27 February 1990 calling for a ‘fundamental change in British policy’ towards South Africa. The lobby was organised by the Southern Africa Coalition and was the biggest ever parliamentary lobby on Southern Africa.

90s02. Southern Africa Coalition Lobby meeting

Leaders of the mass movement against apartheid within South Africa were the main speakers at a meeting held at the parliamentary lobby organised by the Southern Africa Coalition on 27 February 1990. The lobbyists asked their MPs to support the maintenance of sanctions against South Africa. The day before Nelson Mandela’s release, Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher announced that Britain would end its limited restrictions on new investment and tourism.

boy17. ‘Don’t buy products of apartheid!’

After the release of Nelson Mandela in February 1990 the AAM continued to campaign for a boycott of South African goods. It argued that economic pressure was necessary to force the apartheid government to agree to genuine majority rule. This leaflet quoted Mandela, ‘Take whatever action you can to isolate apartheid’.

boy18. ‘Boycott Apartheid Gold!’

boy18. ‘Boycott Apartheid Gold!’

In 1990 the AAM focused on gold jewellery as part of its consumer boycott campaign. South Africa’s main trading partners banned sales of Krugerrands in the mid 1980s. As a result of the campaign, the jewellery chain Ratners agreed to remove identifiable South African gold from the jewellery sold in its shops. This leaflet was one of a series published after the release of Nelson Mandela arguing that continued economic pressure was necessary to force the apartheid government into negotiations.

boy20. ‘Apartheid is not dead! Keep up the boycott!’

After the release of Nelson Mandela in February 1990 the AAM continued to campaign for a boycott of South African goods. It argued that economic pressure was necessary to force the apartheid government to agree to genuine majority rule. This leaflet quoted Mandela, ‘Take whatever action you can to isolate apartheid’.

po123. Tell Mrs Thatcher Stop Supporting Apartheid

Poster publicising a march and rally from Hyde Park to Trafalgar Square on 25 March 1990. The AAM campaigned throughout the 1980s to pressure Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher into dropping her opposition to sanctions against South Africa. Thatcher declared her intention to lift UK voluntary bans on new investment and tourism promotion on 10 February 1990, the day before Nelson Mandela’s release.

pic9008. South African Airways protest

pic9008. South African Airways protest

Demonstrators blocked the entrance to the South African Airways office at Oxford Circus on 3 September. In 1990 the AAM campaigned stepped up its campaign to persuade holidaymakers to not to visit South Africa. One of the few sanctions Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher agreed to was a voluntary ban on the promotion of tourism to South Africa or Namibia, but the British government did nothing to put this into practice.