INTRODUCTION: Five years ago some of the worst rioting ever seen in South Africa erupted in Soweto -- the sprawling black township near Johannesburg.
GV & LV Soweto township (2 shots)
TRACKING SHOT Poorer houses in Soweto
CU Signboard Soweto Council Electricity Distribution Project
GV PAN & CU FROM Houses TO mechanical digger clearing trench for electric cables (2 shots)
GV PAN FROM Highway under construction TO Soweto Township
LV PAN & CU Pedestrians walking to new shopping centre (2 shots)
LV & CU Car wash, off-licence and cinema with people waiting outside (4 shots)
CU Dr. Nthato Motlana talking to Visnews reporter (3 shots)
LV Middle class housing in Soweto under construction (6 shots)
LV Children playing in school yard
SPEECH ON FILM (TRANSCRIPT)
SEQ. 8: MOTLANA: "The events of '76, '77, can be repeated any given day, because the fundamental demands of the children of '76, '78, '77, have not been changed at all. They demanded a unified system of education under one Minister. They demanded that the funding on black education be upgraded substantially. They demanded a better quality of teacher, and those things are talked about, but nothing is done about them."
HAMILTON: "How then do you see Soweto in another five years time?"
MOTLANA: "I see Soweto deteriorating, despite what the government says about electrification and so on. I see no fundamental desire to change things here. The big issue that may cause another '77, '76, is housing. The overcrowding here has to be seen to be believed, and the government is doing absolutely nothing about it."
REPORTER: KEVIN HAMILTON
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: INTRODUCTION: Five years ago some of the worst rioting ever seen in South Africa erupted in Soweto -- the sprawling black township near Johannesburg. For months angry blacks battled with police in the streets and hundreds were killed. The rioting started after a black youth died when police opened fire on marchers protesting against discrimination in education. Since then the 16th of June has become a day of mourning for South Africa's 18 million blacks.
SYNOPSIS: Soweto today...a sprawling city with the largest concentration of blacks in South Africa. When rioting swept through here in 1976, Soweto became a household name throughout the world. But despite the publicity, reliable information is difficult to obtain. Even population estimates are vague -- anything up to 1.5 million people.
But there are signs of progress. Construction teams work to complete electrification of the township by 1985. Roads are also being built. New shopping centres have sprung up. But serious problems remain. A particularly critical report was issued last year by a private study group, the Urban Foundation.
The report said one of the worst problems was homelessness and overcrowding with between seven and fourteen people per house. And it added that 30 per cent of the inhabitants were there illegally, having evaded South Africa's pass laws to escape rural poverty. But, in spite of South Africa's booming economy, there was serious unemployment in Soweto, particularly among young people.
Worse still, the Report said, was the problem of crime -- with up to 12 violent deaths each weekend. One black leader, Dr. Nthate Motlana, told reporter Kevin Hamilton nothing had change.
Not everyone in Soweto is poor. These houses are for blacks too -- middle class professionals and businessmen. But the future peace of the township will not be decided here. During the past few weeks, protests have broken out again. Hundreds of troops were drafted into Johannesburg's Western suburbs after violent demonstrations by coloured (mixed race) students. So far, black students in Soweto have not joined in but as the anniversary of the 1976 riots approaches this could easily happen.