Issued by: Truth and Reconciliation Commission
The amnesty applications of 13 ANC members and supporters relating to attacks on Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) supporters in the early 1990s will be heard in Ermelo next week.
Most of the victims were members of either the IFP or of a group known as the "Black Cats" who were allegedly involved in an armed conflict with the ANC in the Mpumalanga town between 1990 and 1992. Eight of the 14 victims died in related incidents of shooting and killing, while others were injured. Some of the victims were security guards killed in armed robberies.
The applicants, some of whom claim to have been trained as Umkontho weSizwe operatives, seek amnesty for various acts ranging from murder to armed robbery and illegal possession of firearms.
The conflict in Ermelo between the liberation structures and the "Black Cats" was so severe that it became a subject of investigation under the Goldstone Commission. The Commission probed allegations that the "Black Cats" were infiltrated by IFP hitsquads trained in the Caprivi as well as by the former security forces. Some individual members of the former security forces in Ermelo have been implicated and have been duly notified in terms of the law.
The names of the applicants are: Mzwandile Hollingwood Gushu, Silas Sipho Nkonyane, Nicholas Zwane, Fanyana John Mndebele, Petros Lucky Mbokane, Paulos Pistol Nkonyane; Livingstone Lukhele, Bongani Wilberforce Khaba, Pelele Lawrence Shongwe, Jabu Aaron Mkhwanazi, David Elvis Majola, Mandlenkosi Enock Mnisi and Jacob Israel Mabena. Mr Majola, a "Black Cat" turned ANC member, is applying for amnesty for killing ANC members while still a member of the group.
The hearing starts on Monday July 20 at the Ermelo City Hall in Church Street. It first began in March this year. However it was postponed upon application by implicated former Security policemen in Ermelo, who were given late notification of the first hearing.