JOHANNESBURG, South Africa — The Supreme Court today turned down black activist Winnie Mandela's bid to overturn a government order barring her from Johannesburg and the neighboring Soweto black township.
In Cape Town, meanwhile, U.S. envoy Chester Crocker met with President Pieter W. Botha to discuss Namibian independence and deliver a personal letter from President Reagan.
Mandela, known in black dissident circles as "the Mother of the Nation," was barred by a government order issued Dec. 21 from entering Johannesburg and the neighboring black township of Soweto, where she owns a home.
She challenged the decision last week after she was twice arrested for defying the order, but the court rejected her application today. It gave her permission, however, to appeal the ruling.
Judge Louis le Grange "ruled that the court did not have any grounds to decide whether the (justice) minister's decision was valid or not," her lawyer, Ismael Ayob, said. He described the ruling as disappointing.
Mandela, wife of jailed African National Congress leader Nelson Mandela, was not in court to hear the decision. She has been ordered to stand trial Jan. 22 for twice entering Soweto without permission.
The order replaced an earlier one that exiled her to the remote farming town of Brandfort for eight years.
In Cape Town, President Botha was joined by Foreign Minister Roelof F. (Pik) Botha and Defense Minister Gen. Magnus Malan for a day of meetings with Crocker, the assistant secretary of state for African affairs.
South African officials said Crocker delivered a letter to Botha from Reagan but they would not reveal details of the communication.
Troop Withdrawal Talks
Crocker arrived in South Africa Sunday from Angola, where he spent two days discussing proposals for the withdrawal of 30,000 to 35,000 Cuban troops and independence for Namibia, Angola's southern neighbor.
Namibia, also known as South-West Africa, has been ruled by South Africa for nearly 70 years.
Washington and Pretoria have joined forces to link Namibian independence to the withdrawal of Cuban forces from Angola.
Crocker flew to Cape Town late Sunday from Johannesburg, where he toured KwaThema, Duduza and Katlehong east of Johannesburg hours after one his hosts, a black community leader, was hacked to death. (Story on Page 16.)