Issued by: Truth and Reconciliation Commission
STATEMENT BY DUMISA NTSEBEZA, HEAD OF THE TRUTH AND RECONCILIATION COMMISSION'S INVESTIGATIVE UNIT.
The TRC's Investigative Unit (IU) has served three former Umkontho we Sizwe (MK) commanders with invitations to attend an investigative inquiry on alleged atrocities committed during the seventies and eighties in ANC detention facilities in Angola.
They are: Gen. Andrew Masondo and Mr. John Zulu of the South African National Defence Force (SANDF) and Mr. Gabriel Mthembu of the National Intelligence Agency (NIA). The inquiry will be held behind closed doors on 26 and 30 March in the TRC's Cape Town offices. They will be required in terms of the Promotion of National Unity and Reconciliation Act to answer questions and/or give evidence in relation to the IU's ongoing investigations into the alleged violations.
Among the issues that will be raised with the former MK members are:
- their relevant roles at the time of the alleged offences; - the structure of the detention facilities, as well as standing orders and procedures issued to the administration and command; - the interrogation of detainees; - mechanisms for control of excesses and abuses; - guidelines in respect of judicial proceedings, particularly the Tribunal, - and to provide information relevant to the deaths of at least six alleged detainees.
Those who allegedly died in detention include: Timothy Seremane, Boithlomo Leballo, Edward Malope, Philip Mangoena, Joseph Moeketsi Mokoena and Paki Gabriel Moshoeu.
The Commission received several human rights violation statements from alleged victims of the detention facilities, which are still under investigation. In addition, several amnesty applications were received from people involved in violations in detention camps, like Quatro. Aspects of these will be discussed with the three invitees. In terms of Section 39 of the Act, they will be guilty of an offence or liable to be prosecuted if they fail to attend the hearing at the time and place specified without sufficient cause.
They are entitled by the Act to appoint a legal representative to assist them and if they are not financially capable of doing so, the Commission may appoint a legal representative for them. ends