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Sad-Joy 1976

A Politician cares about VOTE, a Philosopher cares about Life.

The 1976-Uprising in South Africa changed the course of history. And,
Nelson Mandela showed the world that you can overcome supremacist
through peaceful persuasion.

The Debate regarding the 1976-Uprising in South Africa still continues.
It serves as good example of History being a dynamic subject where
conclusions regarding causes and results can never be definitive. That
is why interpretation and re-interpretation is the life-blood of


Immediately after the police had fatally shot Hector Petersen, a
peaceful protest march turned into a bloodbath. In 1952 Nelson Mandela
led a Defiance Campaign: Bus boycott and Potato boycott, but a brutal
police intervention worsened the situation. Between June and December
1976,the country was ungovernable. In the Black Townships the spectre of
Nelson Mandela was looming in a distant horizon. Although incarcerated
on Robben Island the "spirit" of Nelson Mandela was very alive and
kicking in the four cardinal points of South Africa and abroad. Most
people understood the Freedom Charter better than the Bible.

As it were, South Africa is like a zebra, black and white. Some white
folks did not approve of the segregation policy of the National
Party-led administration. There were prominent leaders who were led more
by a voice of reason than the sight of color. The Reverend Beyers Naude
who was in a white-skin and a Member of the Afrikanerbond was an
exception to the rule. He was a lodestar, a paragon of perfection. The
Right Reverend Beyers Naude resigned from the comfort of Apartheid
Regime to support the oppressed majority, the Blacks. There were
prophets as well. For example, the witchdoctor, Credo Mutwa, who foresaw
the assassination of Hendrik Verwoerd. But Mutwa's homestead was burnt
to ashes by rioters. There were stooges, and there were freedom
fighters. Oh, yes, I can talk till cows come home.

In a nutshell,1976 was the year of suspense and leisure. It was laced
with pleasure, agony, nightclubs, dance, prayer, music, sports, romance,
and all that jazz. That is why the Title of the Film is, captioned,
"Sad-Joy of 1976".


I was trained at George Mason University, Washington DC,USA.I was
twenty-one years old when the riots broke out across the country in
1976.I was a junior journalist.I am a prolific writer. A Researcher of
note. I contributed in the crafting of "Mine Health and Safety Act, No
29 of 1996" in the Republic of South Africa. I was a Scriptwriter at
OLSET (Open Learning Systems Education Trust) based in Johannesburg. The
Programme,"English-In-Action", was broadcast by SABC (South Africa
Broadcasting Cooperation)for ten years solid. At the height of HIV/AIDS
pandemic I researched, wrote and produced a Radio Drama, titled, "
Africa All out to Fight HIV/AIDS". The Formative Evaluation was a huge
success: HIV-patients were no longer stigmatized, most people went in
droves to the Clinics to test their HIV-status, Nutrition. The Project
was sponsored by the Department of Arts and Culture.

Prior to a democratic general election in 1993,I wrote an Edutainment
Film, titled, "Voter Education-Features of Democracy". The Film was a
huge success because it contributed to a tranquil transition of
administration. South Africa never experienced a civil war.

In the year 2000,I was selected to adjudicate at International Film and
> Video Association Competition in Orlando, Florida, USA. Last year,2020,I
was a Juror at International Christian Media Awards, Los Angeles,
California, USA.

Further, in September 2020,I participated at Fair International
Cooperation which was held in Amsterdam, Netherland, in Europe.In the
1980s,I was a Member of COSAW (Congress of South African Writers) I used
to teach participant on how to write scripts for TV,FILM, Theatre and


To understand, not to judge, the events of the 1976-Uprising in South Africa, one need to know the history of South Africa between 1966 to 1976.For example Botswana obtained her independence in 1966.Prof Chris Barnard performed a First human-to-human heart-transplant in Cape Town in 1967.The historical moon-landing of Apollo 11 in 1969,Neil Armstrong was a household name. In 1970 the King of Soul Percy Sledge, an African-American performed in Cape Town. He sang love-songs, inter-alia, "Cover Me", "Takes Time to Know her", "When a man loves a Woman". Frankly, a fan said, " Percy Sledge stay here in South Africa". Percy Sledge replied in song, " I got to get a message to you". 4.THE ROLE OF CULTURE IN SOCIETY Culture perspective was heralded by the advent of the musical "King Kong" in 1959.Finally,the Bantustan saga is an open-ended question. A
perfunctory glance at the Peace Treaty of Vereeniging, signed in
1902,Article 8 of the Treaty of Vereeniging made it clear that: " The
question of granting the franchise to natives will not be decided until
after the introduction of self-government".

I am a moral philosopher at heart. Interestingly, British Prime
Minister, Sir Winston Churchill once said, " Jaw-jaw is better than

For the benefit of the next generation, my children and grandchildren, I
(Mesh Chaza) am at the ready to share with those who care to listen to
the anecdotes that I went through: Life is not a bed of roses, it is
bittersweet. Life is life itself you have got to live it in order to
understand it; enjoy the ride. Right now, I enjoy telling stories,
unpacking history as a witness.


The world waited for forty-five years for the epic saga of this
magnitude. A real story of the 1976-Uprising in South Africa. The viewer
will, most certainly, find it stimulating, interesting and rewarding.


Let the Characters themselves reveal the real reason for the uprising
they portray.

Mesh Chaza PhD

South Africa