South Africans who fought in WWII have finally been recognized by the British government.

The veterans who returned from the war were expected to be given big rewards however it did not happen.

Soldiers are now being credited after the Commonwealth War Graves commission began a process of commemoration for those who fought and died, and for the few left who still survive.

More than 80 000 black South Africans served in WWII as part of the Native Military Corps but they were treated as inferior to white soldiers as South Africa rewarded white soldiers with new homes.

Surviving veteran Simon Muhlanga who says he is “about” 106 years old although his family says he is older than that said he felt that he had been cheated by the government of South Africa.

“To me it was, you know, I had to accept it but really I felt that I had been cheated by the government of South Africa to give me a bicycle,” he said.

Meanwhile, records of those who fought for Britain in the first world war is also scant. Terry Cawood, a researcher with the South Africa War Graves projects said he found books with the names of a thousand Black servicemen who fought and died for Britain in WWI.