DURING Women's Month many tributes were paid to the women who marched to the Union Buildings in 1956, to protest against the introduction of passes for black women.
But not once during the entire month did I read or hear a single tribute to the women who, in 1955, marched against the National Party's plan to pack the Senate to subvert the constitution and remove coloured voters from the common roll.
These women were members of the United Party and, as the men leading the UP were timorous (one hesitates to say craven) of confronting the Nats on racial issues, the women defied them and formed the Women's Defence of the Constitution League.
In May 1955, they marched through the streets of Johannesburg in protest and some weeks later marched on the Union Buildings to confront the ogres in their den. The league later converted itself into the Black Sash, whose work of exposing the misery caused by an evil system and in assisting the downtrodden of that system is legendary.
Why their efforts have not been acknowledged is strange indeed. But allow me to rectify that omission and raise my hat in tribute to Jean Sinclair and the band of Amazons who showed that they had more testicular fortitude than many of their male contemporaries.
Derrick Fellows, Port Alfred