Sunday, February 22, 1998 at 15:10:25

I am not a South African, but as an astonished bystander and admirer of the emergence of the New South Africa I wish to express my awe over the process taking place in your country.

The world has a lot to learn from the bravery and humanity of your country and people. I will contribute in my small ways by continuing to visit your beautiful country whenever I can afford it, and in that way at least support your tourism industry.

Nkosi sikelel iAfrica!

Knut Nilsson, Bergen, Norway

Friday, February 27, 1998 at 06:25:28

As a white American, I cannot say that I experienced the horrors of apartheid. But I was exposed to them, through the media here, through elementary school and high school classes, and finally through my studies as a political science major here in college. I would like to personally apologize for standing by and watching while the apartheid regime continued to thrive. I would also like to register my feelings of wonder and inspiration at the work that is now under way in the Truth and Reconcilation Commission. I am studying the Commission right now for a senior thesis in school, and I have had the opportunity to study and follow it for about a year now. I am inspired by the spirit of forgiveness that surrounds the Commission. I believe that apartheid was one of the worst sins that has been perpetrated in my lifetime, but I also believe that only through forgiveness are we able to rise out of the sin ourselves.

It is of the utmost importance that all the victims of apartheid have the love and support of all South Africans and of the world as they come to terms with their suffering. I would like to propose that it is also important that the perpetrators of apartheid have our Christian love and support as they work through the important process of atonement and reconcilation. I recently had the honor of meeting your Ambassador Sonn, the Ambassador to the United States, who is an inspiring and kind man. His words on the Truth Commission and on the spirit of reconcilation in the South African people have made me realize that we Americans have a lot to learn from you. One hundred and thirty years after the end of slavery in this country, thirty years after the work of Martin Luther King, Jr., there is still a need for reconcilation between the races in the United States. I pray that we can learn from your example, and that together we can teach our children so that they will not have to be in the position we now find ourselves. Good luck and God Bless you in all of your endevours toward truth and reconcilation.

Tannis Burk, Seattle, Washington, USA

Friday, February 27, 1998 at 23:35:41

I am a white South African, rejected by my biological family on grounds of my beliefs. I have accepted the Muslim faith some years back and did so at great cost. This was not used as an excuse to hide from the evil past and creep into a space. I feel that the so - called white people could have done something, but they were to busy enjoying themselves in the Evil past. I was locked - up for trying to assist my workers bring in their wifes from the then homelands so that the families could be together when the Bantu Administration Board was still in existence. I wanted to make a difference, but was going against an establishment that denied me this.

I was a State employee but resigned after accusations that I was helping my Coloured co - workers and favouring them above my white co - workers. I still cry when I think of my happy childhood in District Six before it was removed and destroyed by a signed piece of paper. Today I regret not having done more. I am trying to work to bring all people of South Africa together to live in harmony, cultural understanding and co - operation today. So far I have achieved success in my attempts and know it will only get better. LET PEACE RULE.....

Muhammad Kaazim Vickerman, Belgravia Estate, Athlone, Cape Town, SA

Wednesday, March 4, 1998 at 10:15:38

I deeply regret my personal failure to change what I knew to be wrong about apartheid. I did try, over many years, but totally ineffectually, and I continue to regret that I did not do enough energet ically enough.

Elizabeth Robertson, Johannesburg, SA

Wednesday, March 11, 1998 at 19:35:33

Mea culpa, mea culpa, mea maxima culpa.

I lived in Apartheid South Africa from 1962 until today.

Pink (White) and privileged.

Although I spoke out, I only did so when the evil of the system and its laws hurt me personally and when I could not be held by, kiss, live with, marry and bear the children of the man I loved......and still love!!!

I never fought against the system with true courage, prepared to lose everything.....but from a position of privilege, comfort and safety.

The evil which I saw, knew and heard....and researched, I made the subject of a thesis which I believed would bring me acknowledgement, fame, approval and success. I have been selfish, vain, indulgent, arrogant and greedy.

I have tried to make reparation for living off the system and benefitting from it, including even flaunting my (deeply regretted) association with one of its brutal killers but I have not done so with the humility, sacrifice and dedication which genuine remorse demands.

Although I do not have the same physical strength and energy when I was younger and in better health, I swear and promise that every day of my life, I will do some practical, hands-on action to enhance the lives of fellow South Africans, who have suffered under Apartheid. I undertake NOT to deal with politicians, "movers and shakers" and 'spooks' except to the extent that it is absolutely neccessary to keep the oath and promise I have made.

Jennifer Emily Hutchinson Wild, Durban, South Africa

Friday, March 13, 1998 at 09:59:09

I would like to place on record my sincere and heartfelt apologies to the millions of South Africans who suffered under apartheid and who continue to suffer the effects of this violent system. I am one of those who, while I could see how cruel the system was to many of those around me and how it undermined their human dignity on a daily basis, did not do enough to oppose it. I dread explaining how something like this can happen to my young children in the years to come.

I hope that the people can find it in themselves to forgive those like me. I hope that we will be able to build new bridges in South Africa,where those who have make a real and visible contribution to the the many who have little or nothing. My wish is that all young people will be instilled with the moral integrity and fortitude to know that each person is ultimately and solely responsible for BOTH his/her actions AND omissions to act.

Thank you for this opportunity to express my deepest remorse.

Andrew Ainslie, Grahamstown, SA

Tuesday, May 12, 1998 at 15:33:59

Words cannot describe how sorry I am that things went so worng in our wonderful country. It was so convenient to support the apartheid system because it secured me of so many things which I took for granted. I apologise for being so selfish. May the Good Lord help the suffered to forgive me. I am determined to make my contribution to build a better South Africa to ensure that our children do not suffer. I educate my children to reach out to the needy, to be thankful for all their opportunities and to appreciate our country and all the wonderful people and cultures. Thank you for all your hard work all you TRC people - this reconcilliation process is so necessary. Why don't the Whites understand this. Why don't the newspapers, especially the Afrikaans newspapers, not fulfill their duty and promote the work of the TRC and project a positive image of the TRC? I was so proud to see the names of my reverends (Elarduspark NG Gemeente) in the list of reverends supporting the statement of the NG Kerk to ask for forgiveness. I am so proud of all the South Africans who forgive us - most of all of our President who sets an excellent example. What we need now is for the Whites to stop thinking about themselves - we still enjoy all the opportunities and benefits of the past, I really do not know what they are complaining about - and to start making a positive contribution to build this country and help the millions who are so poor and disadvantaged.

Herma de Wit, Pretoria, SA

Monday, May 18, 1998 at 05:18:39

Im only 17 years old and I only know what I've read in books and seen in the media. I shudder to think what the survivors of this abomination have to live with and I am disgusted with supremicists everywhere. I just wanted to say that even though, I'll never actually know what it was like to live through, I will never take part in any form of discrimination or malice and I will defend fervently anyone who is a victim to it.

Bret, Dallas, Texas

Monday, May 25, 1998 at 16:41:51

This submission was handed in with the submission of the society of teachers in the law - we felt, however, that we would like to also include our submission in the register as we felt we have something to confess


Dit kan nie ontken word nie dat daar nie genoeg stemme uit hierdie Fakulteit se geledere opgegaan het nie teen ernstige skendings van menseregte in die verlede wat voortgespruit het uit 'n wye verskeidenheid van statutere maatreels en die toepassing daarvan in die daaglikse lewe. Hier word veral gedink aan die ontwrigting van die gesinslewe van miljoene Swart Suid-Afrikaners deur byvoorbeeld instromingsbeheermaatreels, die tuisland- en groepsgebiede beleid, werkreservering, die gewelddadige afdwinging van hierdie maatreels deur onaanvaarbare optrede soos liggaamlike aanrandings, gedwonge verskuiwings en aanhouding sonder verhoor.

Die feit dat die stilswye hoofsaaklik, indien nie uitsluitlik nie, te wyte was aan die godsdienstige-, sosio-politieke, sosio-ekonomiese en sosiaal-maatskaplike filosofiee en uitgangspunte wat destyds deel van veral die Afrikaner se beskouinge uitgemaak het, verklaar wel die gebrek aan protes maar verskoon dit nie - veral nie uit 'n Christelike oogpunt nie. Die Christelike grondslag van hierdie Universiteit is na ons mening in diskrediet gebring veral omdat die optrede ook nie in ooreenstemming was met die sentrale liefdesgebod nie, wat baie duidelik in die Bybel as die geopenbaarde Woord van God aan elke Christen opgedra word.

Kritiek teen statutere maatreels wat diskriminerend was en ingedruis het teen die beginsels van naasteliefde en menswaardigheid is wel reeds in die sestigerjare deur Potchefstroomse akademici soos LJ du Plessis, JD van der Vyver en JH Coetzee uitgespreek en ook in bepaalde onderrigsituasies aan studente deurgegee (bv in die Staatsregklas van 1961 deur LJ du Plessis). Hierdie standpunt is deur opvolgers soos onder meer LM du Plessis uitgedra. Hierdie mense het hulle destyds in eie geledere op die eensame pad bevind omdat hulle onder die min stemme was wat destyds opgegaan het. Die gebrek aan daadwerklike, of ten minste morele steun aan hierdie persone word betreur. Die voorbeeld en standpunte wat hulle gestel het, leef vandag egter sterk in die geledere van hierdie fakulteit en word deur oud-studente gekoester.

Kritiek kan ook uitgespreek word omdat studente wat graag aan die PU vir CHO sou wou studeer, nie lank gelede reeds die geleentheid gegun was om dit te doen nie. Baie van hierdie studente was mede-Christene. 'n Objektiewe terugblik en ernstige selfondersoek, selfs al is dit met die kennis van nabaat (knowledge of hindsight) bring mee dat ons, as ons volkome eerlik met onsself en teenoor ons Skepper wil wees, opreg verskoning moet vra omdat ons as Christen-akademici vanuit ons bevoorregte posisie nie genoeg gedoen het om 'n daadwerklike bydrae te maak tot die verligting van die lot van ons mede Suid- Afrikaners nie.


Prof I Vorster (dekaan van die Fakulteit); Prof W du Plessis; Prof GTS Eiselen; Prof GM Ferreira; Me L Jansen van Rensburg; Dr I Kroeze; Prof GJ Pienaar; Adv C Rautenbach; Prof JA Robinson; Prof TE Scheepers; Prof J Swanepoel; Dr I Kroeze; Me L Jansen van Rensburg; Adv C Rautenbach.

Members of the Faculty of Law, Potchefstroom University, SA

Wednesday, May 27, 1998 at 19:51:39

I would like it noted that I, as a white South African acknowledge my complicity with the evil of apartheid. I have begun a process of understanding and coming to terms with that complicity over the last four years. The TRC has been instrumental in this journey, as well as the books: Into the heart of Darkness, by Jaques Pauw and Antjie Krog's book, Country of my Skull. I believe in the work the TRC is doing and I support it completely. I have committed myself to the processes set out by the TRC. I would like to thank Archbishop Tutu for being a source of inspiration for me.

Julie Barker, Johannesburg