A warder named van Rensburg he ill-treated the prisoners in any for he could and urinated next to their food. So, Nelson Mandela and fellow prisoners called van Rensburg “Suitcase”. They called him suitcase because he always carried his lunch box and warder’s lunch boxes were known as “suitcase” and normally a warder would designate a prisoner, usually his favourite to carry his “suitcase” and reward him with half a sandwich. Here is the passage for humour: it starts:
One day Wilton Mkwayi inadvertently referred to “Suitcase” within van Rensburg’s hearing. “Who is Suitcase?” van Rensburg bellowed. Wilton paused for a moment and then blurted out, “It’s you!” “Why do you call me “suitcase?” van Rensburg asked. Wilton replied tentatively. “The general prisoners carry the “suitcases” of their warders, but we won’t carry yours-so we call you Suitcase”
Van Rensburg considered this for a moment and, instead of getting angry, announced, “My name is not Suitcase, it’s Dik Nek.” There was a silence for a moment, and then all of us burst into laughter. In Afrikaans, “Dik Nek” literally means “thick neck”; it suggests someone who is stubborn and unyielding. Suitcase, I suspect, was too thick to know he had been insulted.