In official terminology during the apartheid era: a name given to each of the eight ethnic groups into which black South Africans were divided (see quotations 1961 and 1986).See also nation.
1959Memorandum: Promotion of Bantu Self Govt Bill 8The objects can be outlined as follows...The creation of homogeneous administration areas for the Bantu by uniting the members of each Bantu national group in one national unit, concentrated in one coherent homeland where possible.
1961Off. Yr Bk of Union No. 30, 1960 (Bureau of Census & Statistics) 325The Bantu population shall, for the purpose of the Act (sc. the Promotion of Bantu Self Government Bill, 1959) consist of the following national units: (a) The North-Sotho unit; (b) the South-Sotho unit; (c) the Swazi unit; (d) the Tsonga unit; (e) the Tswana unit; (f) the Venda unit; (g) the Xhosa unit; and (h) the Zulu unit.
1961Off. Yr Bk of Union No. 30, 1960 (Bureau of Census & Statistics) 326Commissioners-General, These persons shall represent the Government with the national unit in respect of which they have been appointed.
1970Rand Daily Mail 8 Sept. 7Immigrant receptionists had been unable to reply in Afrikaans to the Commissioner-General to the Xhosa National Unit.
1986P. MaylamHist. of Afr. People 167This measure proclaimed the existence of eight African ‘national units’, based on assumed linguistic and cultural diversity, but not on territoriality.
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