DATE: 18 APRIL 2000



DAY: 2

--------------------------------------------------------------------------CHAIRPERSON: Today we'll be commencing with hearing of Mr Sipho Nthandi. I would at this stage request the legal representatives to kindly place themselves on record.

MR KOOPEDI: My name is Brian Koopedi, I appear on behalf of the applicant, Mr Sipho Nthandi.

CHAIRPERSON: Thank you Mr Koopedi.

MS COLERIDGE: My name is Lyn Coleridge and I appear on behalf of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission.

CHAIRPERSON: Thank you, Ms Coleridge. Just before we start, I notice some people don't have these devices. These proceedings are simultaneously interpreted. If you wish to benefit from the interpretation, you must be in possession of one of these devices. They are available from the sound technician and then you just tune into the correct channel for the language you wish, it's either Afrikaans, channel 1, English channel 2 and Sotho channel 3.

Mr Koopedi, I take it your client will be testifying?

MR KOOPEDI: That is indeed so. He will be testifying in Zulu, Chairperson.

MS COLERIDGE: Chairperson, just before we commence, I just want to place on record that Sgt Morgets, that is the person's home that was attacked, we could not trace him, Chairperson. We contacted the Orlando Police Station where he worked and we advertised in the Soweto newspapers, Chairperson and we've had no response to date. So as far as the victim is concerned, the matter is unopposed Chairperson. In terms of the implicated parties, we have informed the attorneys for Ms Winnie Mandela, ...(indistinct) attorneys. Then the other implicated parties, Chairperson, Margaret Stefile ...(intervention)

JUDGE DE JAGER: Sorry Ms Coleridge, could you put your's a bit nearer? Thanks.

MS COLERIDGE: Margaret Stefile has been notified. She was here yesterday as well, Chairperson. She's aware of the hearing commencing today. Philemon Monziwe was also here yesterday, he's not here today. They're all aware of it. Then there's a Mr Mavuso and a Daliem ...(indistinct), Chairperson. They have all been duly notified.

CHAIRPERSON: Thank you Ms Coleridge. I take it with the first named victim all reasonable steps have been taken to get hold of him, but without success?

MS COLERIDGE: Correct, Chairperson.

SIPHO NTHANDI: (sworn states)


MR KOOPEDI: Thank you Chairperson. Before I proceed, I would perhaps first request the Honourable Committee to condone non-compliance with attestation. The applicant's application form was not signed before a Commissioner of Oaths.

CHAIRPERSON: We noticed that, that's page 8 of the document. I think if he could confirm the contents of it under oath here, then we'll be in a position to condone it.

MR KOOPEDI: We will start by doing that.

EXAMINATION BY MR KOOPEDI: Mr Nthandi, is it correct that you are an applicant in this matter?


MR KOOPEDI: Now I am showing you a document from the bundle of documents before us. It's page 2, Honourable Chairperson, right through to page 8. Is this your application form?


MR KOOPEDI: And do you confirm the contents thereof, that you wrote what is in it?

MR NTHANDI: That is correct.

MR KOOPEDI: Now is it also correct that you are applying for amnesty for two incidents? The first incident being the planting of two limpid mines at Orlando police station around October 1989 and the second incident being an attack on a police man's house, Sgt Morgets, during December 1989?

MR NTHANDI: That is correct.

JUDGE DE JAGER: ...(indistinct - mike not on)


JUDGE DE JAGER: The first one is planting two limpet mines in October 19..?



MR KOOPEDI: Yes, at the Orlando ...(intervention)


MR KOOPEDI: Orlando Police station.

JUDGE DE JAGER: Yes and the second one?

MR KOOPEDI: The second one is the attack on a policeman's house.

JUDGE DE JAGER: Mr Koopedi and there's mention of shooting a policeman, when was that? The same incident?

MR KOOPEDI: It's the same incident, this attack encompasses the shooting, this is Sgt Morgets' house.

CHAIRPERSON: Sorry, how do you spell that name, Mr Koopedi?

MR KOOPEDI: Morgets, it's spelled M-O-R-G-E-T-S.

CHAIRPERSON: Is that during February 1990?

MR KOOPEDI: No that is December 89.

CHAIRPERSON: December 1989.

MR KOOPEDI: Perhaps for the sake of clarity and for the Honourable Committee to be able to follow the proceedings easily, the two incidents occurred both in 1989, October and December and the dates that are appearing which are 1988 and February 1990, are mistakes of some sort. There are no incidents for which amnesty is sought during those times.

CHAIRPERSON: And you say, I mean just to get this clear, if you can take a look at paragraph 9(a), Mr Koopedi, it talks about bombing of Orlando police station. That's fine, we've got that, October 1989. Then it says:

"Raid and bombing of a policeman's house with intention to kill"

and then the date there is December 1989 and then it's got

"shooting of a policeman"

and also a date, February 1990, so that shooting of policeman, is that a part of the attack on Sgt Morgets' house?

MR KOOPEDI: That is indeed so. My instructions are that the raid and bombing of a policeman's house, with intention to kill, shooting of a policeman, all this refers to the one incident, the attack on Sgt Morgets' house.

CHAIRPERSON: Okay. So this clearly, as it appears in sub-paragraph 2 or 9(a), that date 1999 is clearly wrong, I mean that should be 1989.

MR KOOPEDI: That is indeed so, Chairperson.

CHAIRPERSON: And then that 1990 February as you said, is just some sort of mistake, it shouldn't be ...

MR KOOPEDI: Yes, some incident for which amnesty is not being sought, occurred during February 1990.

CHAIRPERSON: And also if one takes a look at sub-paragraph 3, it says that the places where these incidents took place was Orlando East. I take it, I don't know, but just from the way it's set out here, I take it that's where the police station is situated?

MR KOOPEDI: That is so, Chairperson.

CHAIRPERSON: And then I don't know, it's got Orlando West, Diepkloof and White City, unless this was a mobile home that was attacked on the move, or why are there so many places here?

MR KOOPEDI: Chairperson, Orlando West is the place where Sgt Morgets resided. Now the Diepkloof and White City are the places where I say that something happened during February 1990, for which amnesty is not being sought. Applicant was in hiding then. There was some shooting near where he was. Yes, he's not applying for amnesty for that.

CHAIRPERSON: Okay, thank you Mr Koopedi.

MR KOOPEDI: Thank you, Chairperson. Now Mr Nthandi, during October 1989, were you a member of any political organisation and if so, which one?


In 1988 I got to know people like Sizwe and other comrades from Orlando West, as I staying in Orlando East, they were residing in Orlando West. It happened that in 1989 I joined the underground structures, MK structure. Sizwe was the Commander of the underground structures and I knew him as a trained person. He was also Mrs Mandela's son-in-law's step son.

In 1989 an instruction was issued that we should attack the Orlando Police Station. I had to undergo a crash course to handle a bomb. That crash course was conducted by Sizwe. I was given two limpet mines. The Orlando Police Station was in my neighbourhood, therefore I could be able to monitor the movements in the Orlando Police Station.

On that particular day I was coming from school. It was month end and I knew that during month end, the police were normally busy and twelve o'clock was the right time to visit the prisoners. People would be there going up and down, getting in and getting out of the police station and it would be easier to do anything because it was month end and a visiting time. The day before he gave me that bomb and I took it home. The following day I left for school. At about lunch-time I left to set this bomb, to prepare it. There was a library opposite the Orlando Police Station and I put it in the library and then I got into the police station in Orlando. My intention was to plant this bomb in the toilet.

When I arrived there, I saw policemen busy drinking in the toilets. I realised that I cannot do it there and I left. I went up the stairs at the police station, going to the Station Commander's office. When I arrived there and I saw a clerk, it became apparent to me that I won't be able to plant this bomb and there was another office next to this other office, the office that was used as the canteen and even there, there were other policemen dining there and I couldn't plant the bomb there and I was becoming scared, because time was just moving on, because I was scared that - I was told about the time delay, that the one that was on there was a five minute time delay and I could realise that 5 minutes had elapsed and I went back telling myself that I was going to throw it there at the reception and unfortunately when I got there, there were people visiting the prisoners. There were so many people there who were still registering to get in. I thought to myself that innocent people would die and I decided to get out of the Orlando Police Station. There was a house in front of the Orlando Police Station, just a small house, where the police sit when they are guarding. I saw the police basking in the sun outside their guard room and then I got into the guard room and I planted it under the table and then I left.

After crossing the street, after walking for about 150 to 200 metres, I saw policemen stopping the cars on the street and then I left the scene and when I was somewhere on the road, I heard the explosion. I went back. On that particular night I went to Diepkloof.

MR KOOPEDI: That is as far as the incident in October 89. Now during December 1989,...(intervention)

CHAIRPERSON: Sorry, just before you proceed, Mr Koopedi, sorry to interrupt, so you know whether anybody was injured as a result of that blast, Mr Nthandi?

MR NTHANDI: No, I know nothing because I never went back to the scene after that.

MR KOOPEDI: Thank you Chairperson. Perhaps if one would assist in the question asked, from the documents supplied to us it appears no-one was injured and in fact that explosion was triggered off by the police.

CHAIRPERSON: Yes, I just wanted to get it on record.

MR KOOPEDI: Thank you Chairperson. Now during December 1989 ...(intervention)

CHAIRPERSON: What I - you mentioned earlier it was the placing that it was the placing of two limpet mines, did I mishear you when you were saying what you are applying for?

MR KOOPEDI: Maybe, yes, those were ...

CHAIRPERSON: Was it one limpet mine that was put in the guard room and then you mentioned about leaving a mine in the library, so something. Just clear that up please.

MR NTHANDI: There were two limpet mines. I did not explain very well. There were two limpet mines in the plastic. I left both of them at the police station.

MR KOOPEDI: Now at the library, what were you doing at the library?

MR NTHANDI: That was where I was preparing them, inserting the detonators and the other stuff. I left for the police station with these two limpet mines in a carrier bag. This is where I started to prepare them in the library and then I left the library because the library was just opposite the police station, it's just across the street.

CHAIRPERSON: Thank you. Mr Koopedi.

MR KOOPEDI: Thank you Chairperson. Now shall we go to the incident in December 1989 and perhaps before we even go there, after this explosion were you still in contact with Sizwe, that is the police station,the Orlando police station explosion, were you still in contact with Sizwe?

MR NTHANDI: What happened is this. Sizwe, as I said, he was staying somewhere else. Just after this explosion on the same day, during the night, if I want to see Sizwe I would go to Diepkloof Extension, I would get there and tell the boys or talk to Mama and tell her that I wanted to meet with Sizwe, that is where we used to meet and then he would further suggest another place to meet because Sizwe didn't know my home and I also didn't know his home where he used to hide. On that very same day I left for Diepkloof Extension. I first talked to Guybooi and I told him about the incident and Mama called me and told me that she heard that I had planted a bomb at the police station, then he asked me if there were any casualties. I said I didn't see anything. I left the scene immediately. He asked me if I was sure that no-one was injured.

JUDGE DE JAGER: Could you ask him to go a bit slower, we can't keep up taking notes.

MR KOOPEDI: You can proceed.

MR NTHANDI: On the following day they said they were going to send someone. There was a young man who was staying there in that neighbourhood and we were at the same school. His name was Gazaza.

CHAIRPERSON: Just, if you could spell that name.


MR SIBANYONI: While you are still there, you said you were talking about Mama, to whom are you referring by "Mama"?

MR NTHANDI: I am referring to Mrs Madikizele Mandela.

CHAIRPERSON: Yes, continue.

MR KOOPEDI: Ja now, okay. The - I want us to get to the incident in December 1989. Did Sizwe say anything to you during December about an attack?


We met with Sizwe in the morning. We were together for the whole day. In the evening he told me that I am not supposed to get any information 5 hours in advance because sometimes it may happen that I would inform somebody else by mistake and then he told me in the evening that he wanted me to go with him to the Orlando West, there was a policeman who was harassing the comrades and he's been a sell-out for a very long time and he said he wanted us to go there and attack that policeman. We had to attack the policeman and he said the first step would be, when we got to the premises, we won't get inside the house, we were going to shoot from the outside. He said I was going to have one AK47 and he was also going to be armed the same. We were two in this mission.

Late at night at about 8 we went to fetch Matopa, Norman, at his home because we had a problem because no-one would be able to drive a car. We got hold of Norman. Norman was going to be the driver and hew as going to park the car at a certain place and he wouldn't be involved in the incident. Goodman came, we were playing music with him and the time came for us to leave and we decided that we cannot leave Goodman behind.

We got into the car, myself, Goodman, Norman and Sizwe. I was armed with an AK47.

JUDGE DE JAGER: Please go a bit slower. We've got to write down what you're saying and otherwise we'll forget what you're saying and then we can't deal with everything you've been telling us.

CHAIRPERSON: Who was Goodman? Was he a friend of yours? Where does Goodman fit into it? You say Goodman came and you sat and listened to music and then you realised that you couldn't go without Goodman, so he came with you in the car, but who was Goodman?

MR NTHANDI: He was just a friend.

CHAIRPERSON: He wasn't an MK operative or anything like that?


At the time I wasn't sure whether he was a member

of the underground, as I explained initially that we were residing at different places, we would meet sometimes, we would meet at White City. Goodman was also residing at White City. We decided that we cannot leave Goodman behind. As Goodman and Norman came, we had the AK 47 ready in the car, the blue Stanza and when they came, we told them to leave with us. We had already told Norman at the time, but we didn't tell Goodman about the whole mission at the time.

We got into the vehicle. It was a Stanza type of a car. Goodman was occupying the front passenger seat next to the driver. Myself and Sizwe were at the back seat. We went to Orlando West and then we instructed him to park the car next to Uncle Tom's. There were four streets between Uncle Tom's and the place, the Orlando house where we were going. The car was parked under the trees. He just saw us taking the AK47's from the back of the car. Sizwe had his own and the .38 rifle, then he took this .38, gave it to Goodman and then he told him to leave with him. We alighted from the vehicle. He's the one who knew the place very well, Sizwe, that is. I was following and then after myself there was Goodman.

We went to that particular place, the house. There was a long wall fence. He took out a hand grenade, then he threw it to me, he gave it to me and then I took it. He changed his mind and then he took this grenade back and then he said he was going to throw the grenade, then he told me to come closer to the wall fence and lie down and then he said after throwing the hand grenade, after the explosion, we were going to jump the wall fence, because he knew where the guy's bedroom was. Then he threw the grenade. After that there was an explosion. I jumped the wall fence. I was the first one to jump. Just after that, I fired towards the burning room and then he was going towards the bedroom, so I shot - fired at the windows which were facing the street. He went to the other side of the house. I'm the first one to pull the trigger and then when he went to the other side of the house, he started firing. Goodman was still on the street, he never jumped the wall fence. We fired. I had one full magazine and then he had the same. I continued firing until the magazine was finished. I then said it was wise for us to get into the house and we met at a corridor on the other side of the house. I had stopped firing and he was still firing because he had some ammunition and then I told him that it was wise for us to get inside the house, but he refused, he told us to leave.

We jumped the wall fence and we took Goodman. We left.

We were running and we got into the car where Norman was. Norman started the car, but the car failed and then we had to push the car. On our way, he decided to take this .38 rifle, there were still bullets because Goodman never used the ammunition.

MR KOOPEDI: Now, at any stage regarding these two operations, were you ever instructed by Mrs Mandela, to perform this operation?

MR NTHANDI: No. What happened was this. Sizwe told me that Mrs Mandela was fully aware of this and in my mind I thought that he was telling the truth, because Sizwe once told me one day before this incident, as we were discussing, and he asked me if I knew that Mama, Mrs Mandela that is, was the Commander, but when he told me that Mrs Mandela was fully aware of this incident, I thought that he knew this - that she knew about this and they were communicating with Mrs Mandela.

MR KOOPEDI: Is that the reason why you have stated that she gave you the order in your application form, or you said it was with her approval to go to. That is page 6, Chairperson.

MR NTHANDI: Yes, I took it as if she approves everything. Sizwe wouldn't do anything without Mrs Mandela's approval.

CHAIRPERSON: Yes, but that, mr Nthandi, is just your understanding of it, I mean you don't have any direct knowledge of it.

MR NTHANDI: Yes, that is correct.

MR KOOPEDI: Now these two actions, do you think they were politically motivated, or even had a political objective?

MR NTHANDI: I took it as if they were politically motivated because the victims were police and the police station. We wanted the police to resign. I regarded the police as part and parcel of the instruments of operation.

MR KOOPEDI: Now in as far as you can remember, have you told this Honourable Committee the whole truth? Have you fully disclosed all the relevant facts to this Honourable Committee?

MR NTHANDI: I think I have explained everything. I have told the Committee about everything.

MR KOOPEDI: Now for these two operations, did you receive any personal gain, financially or otherwise?


MR KOOPEDI: Chairperson, that is the evidence-in-chief of the applicant. Thank you.


CHAIRPERSON: Thank you, Mr Koopedi. Ms Coleridge, do you have any questions you'd like to put to the applicant?

MS COLERIDGE: Yes, thank you, Chairperson.

CROSS-EXAMINATION BY MS COLERIDGE: Mr Nthandi, you said in your amnesty application form that you were second in Command of the underground unit in Soweto. Was Sizwe, was he the Commander of that underground unit in Soweto?

MR NTHANDI: Yes, that is correct.

MS COLERIDGE: What did your duties entail as second in command?

MR NTHANDI: As second in command, sometimes, I would go to - we would go to Mrs Mandela's house and do some garden work.

MS COLERIDGE: Anything else?

MR NTHANDI: We would check on school children and check among the schools if the students or pupils were participating in political activities, because there were problems in the township. There were gangsters, the ...(indistinct) who were harassing the school children.

MS COLERIDGE: Was this an MK unit that you belonged to? Is that what you're talking about, an underground unit?

MR NTHANDI: Yes, that is correct.

CHAIRPERSON: Mr Nthandi, do you know how many members the unit consisted of?

MR NTHANDI: I cannot say for sure because sometimes you would see people and those people would just disappear without knowing where they were. I cannot say for sure how many people were they, because no-one was allowed to ask such questions.

CHAIRPERSON: And is it correct that Sizwe is now deceased?

MR NTHANDI: Yes, that is true.

CHAIRPERSON: Ms Coleridge.

MS COLERIDGE: You said just before the Orlando police station incident that you went on a crash course. How long did this crash course take?

MR NTHANDI: I can say it was only four nights, four to five nights, because the course would only take place during the night.

MS COLERIDGE: How many people were on the course?

MR NTHANDI: Six people.

MS COLERIDGE; Did you know for what operations you were training for, when you went for that course?

MR NTHANDI: We were trained as to how to assemble the firearm and how to assemble and administer the hand grenades, that was the content of the course.

MS COLERIDGE: Who were the other people on the course? You said there were six people, can you mention their names?

MR NTHANDI: I do not know their names. Some people were speaking the Zulu language and I think those were coming from Durban and then the others were speaking Xhosa and I thought they were coming from Port Elizabeth or Transkei because they were speaking this fluent language and we were not allowed to introduce ourselves to one another and ask about our residential places.

MS COLERIDGE: So you were on course with these people for four to five days and you didn't know who they were. Their code names for instance, did you find that out? I'm sure you must have had code names.

MR NTHANDI: Yes, there were code names.

MS COLERIDGE: Can you give us their code names?

MR NTHANDI: My code name was Dropping Loose, the other one was Tiger, the other one was Mabazo, Themba, Mandla and Jabo.

MS COLERIDGE: And was Sizwe the only one that was the instructor?


MS COLERIDGE: You mentioned a person by the name of Guybooi that went with you to Diepkloof and so forth, what was his real name?

MR NTHANDI: I only knew him as Guybooi.

MS COLERIDGE: You said when you got to Diepkloof there were other people there, there were other boys and you spoke to Mama, did you speak to her, as you said it was Winnie Mandela, did you speak to her yourself in relation to this incident, the Orlando police station incident?

MR NTHANDI: Yes, we were talking together.

MS COLERIDGE: Was Ms Winnie Mandela there? Was she present when you were talking?

JUDGE DE JAGER: I understand the answer to be that he spoke to her personally, so she must have been there.

MS COLERIDGE: Thank you. Thank you Judge de Jager. And what did you tell her?

MR NTHANDI: I told her, as a person who asked me questions about the explosion at that Orlando Police Station, I said: "Yes, I'm the one who was responsible for the explosion at the police station" and then she asked me about the number of the dead people or casualties and I told her that I do not know that information and I told her that I just left the bomb, planted the bomb there and left. She asked me if my Commander was aware about the incident. I said yes, because I got the instruction from my Commander. She said that was fine.

JUDGE DE JAGER: Did she know who your Commander was?

MR NTHANDI: Yes, she was aware.

JUDGE DE JAGER: She knew Sizwe well? He in fact visited her daughter. Is that correct?

MR NTHANDI: Yes, he had a child together with Zindzi, Zindzi Mandela and Sizwe.

CHAIRPERSON: Yes, Ms Coleridge.

MS COLERIDGE: I just want to refer you to page ten of the bundle, where you report, on page 9, you report of the Orlando police incident and then you say:

"I do not know whether Mrs Mandela ordered this, but Sizwe told me afterwards that she was very pleased."

Do you see that part? Why didn't you at this stage inform the Amnesty Committee that you had yourself spoken to Mrs Mandela regarding the Orlando Police Station incident?

MR NTHANDI: I think when I was talking to Mrs Groenewald I told her about this information because she was the one who was transcribing, who was writing this information as I was talking.

MS COLERIDGE: So are you saying that this is incorrect in your amnesty, in your submissions to the Amnesty Committee?

MR NTHANDI: What is it that is incorrect? The fact that it is omitted from this statement?

MS COLERIDGE: And that it seems that you're creating the impression that you didn't yourself liaise with Mrs Mandela, that Sizwe was actually the person in contact with Mrs Mandela and that's the impression that was created in your amnesty application.

MR SIBANYONI: Excuse me Ms Coleridge, is he not saying he only talked to Mrs Mandela after the incident? Now in so far as the order was concerned, at that stage he didn't know, he only heard from Sizwe that Mrs Mandela was aware of this?

MS COLERIDGE: It's just the words that:

"But Sizwe told me afterwards that she was very pleased"

and I was just confused as to whether the applicant meant after the incident, afterwards that she was very pleased, so it was just besides that of the order, because he says:

"I do not know whether Mrs Mandela ordered this, but Sizwe told me afterwards that she was very pleased"

and that was all. That was just the impression ...(intervention)

CHAIRPERSON: But I think that it's clear that he, you know it's not contained that he spoke to her, in the statement he said that he told Ms Groenewald, who was taking the statement, that he did in fact ...

MS COLERIDGE: Correct, Chairperson, thank you. And then I want to get to the Sgt Morgets incident. You said that Sizwe told you that Sgt Morgets was a sell-out and he was harassing comrades. Do you know what that meant, what Sgt Morgets was involved in? Do you know?

MR NTHANDI: No, I didn't know the activities he was involved in.

JUDGE DE JAGER: Did you accept what Mr Sizwe told you?

MR NTHANDI: Yes, I accepted that.

JUDGE DE JAGER: And what was your position? Could you disobey an order given by Mr Sizwe?

MR NTHANDI: I was once told during the crash-course, something got into my mind and stuck there, that if the instruction is issued, you just have to do per instruction and ask questions after.

MS COLERIDGE: The people involved with you in this Sgt Morgets' operation, you said it was - can you just give me those names again, I just want to get all the people's names involved, because you mentioned some new names. You mentioned Goodman, but you didn't mention Goodman in your application.

CHAIRPERSON: I think he said that the four of them went, that was himself, Goodman who was taken along at the last moment, Norman, who was the driver of the vehicle and Sizwe.

MS COLERIDGE: And Matopa, who was Matopa?

MR NTHANDI: He was the driver.

CHAIRPERSON: Is that Norman? Same person?

MR NTHANDI: Yes, that is correct.

MS COLERIDGE: Okay. We know and Stonkie as well, he was also with you. Is that correct? Stonkie Mavuso, you mentioned ...

MR NTHANDI: Stanza is a type of a car.

MS COLERIDGE: No, I'm talking about Stonkie Mavuso.

MS NTHANDI: Stonkie.

MS COLERIDGE: Yes, he was also with you?

MR NTHANDI: That is Goodman.

MS COLERIDGE: Okay. And we know that Norman is Philemon Manziwe, is that correct, that's his real name?


MS COLERIDGE: You said that you would meet regularly at White City, when would these meetings take place? Would it be once a month, every week, can you just enlighten us about those meetings?

MR NTHANDI: That would depend on the situation, it would be once a week or twice a week or after a week.

MS COLERIDGE: And who would be the Chairperson of the meeting?

MR NTHANDI: There is something that I do not understand now. If we meet, it's not like a hall full of people. We can even meet, two people, two of us would meet.

MS COLERIDGE: But at your meetings, who was the head of the meeting? Who would control the meeting? Was it your Commander? Was it Sizwe? Somebody else?

JUDGE DE JAGER: As I understand his evidence it wasn't really a meeting. They met there and discussed matters between one or two or maybe three of them, but it wasn't a meeting in the sense of somebody being in control, I don't know whether I understand it correctly.

MS COLERIDGE: I'm not sure that's why I also want the applicant just to elaborate as to those meetings.

CHAIRPERSON: Sorry, Mr Nthandi, what is White City? Is it an area or is it a building, a place? What is White City?

MR NTHANDI: White City is a township.

CHAIRPERSON: And then did you always used to go to the same place, or did you used to meet at different places within White City?

MR NTHANDI: We would change places.

CHAIRPERSON: Ms Coleridge.

MS COLERIDGE: Would you plan operations at these meetings, or would it just be meetings just talking about general things, or what?

MR NTHANDI: Sizwe was so committed in politics, to such an extent that, at the time in fact I was doing standard ten, during our meetings we would take papers or newspapers and discuss politics in general. He wanted to make sure that I was up to date as far as politics is concerned and as a person who was in the underground structures and I'm the one who was supposed to get information of what was happening because he was wanted, therefore I was the one who had freedom to walk around and get more information.

MS COLERIDGE: And who would all attend these discussions and so forth? Can you name the persons that were regulars at these meetings?

MR NTHANDI: Different people would attend. Sometimes I would find him with somebody else. As I'm saying, I wouldn't question the identity of a person that I find there, we would start chatting and discussion a particular subject and I would leave because I wouldn't spend more time there. We would meet to discuss specific things and I would go back to Orlando. He was not a person who would be with me twenty-four hours a day.

MS COLERIDGE: So basically you're saying you used to meet once or twice a week, different people used to come to these meetings, you discussed politics etc and you can't remember anybody that used to attend these meetings. I find that very strange. You met so often. Are you saying that at every meeting there was just a different group of people there?

MR NTHANDI: Yes, that is correct.

MS COLERIDGE: And then I just want to check with you, on page ten you also mention:

"Ninja Mostofile and I went to check that there was no AK47's left at Sizwe's place."

Who is Ninja and Mostofile? Can you give us their real names? It's the last paragraph on page ten, line three.

JUDGE DE JAGER: What's the driver, Dalinks, wouldn't that be a name too?

MS COLERIDGE: Yes, I think it is, but I thought it was Dalinks, that that was, I'm not sure, Chairperson, but we can check with him.

CHAIRPERSON: Who was Ninja who you mention in your statement, Mr Nthandi?

MR NTHANDI: Ninja was one of the young men who was staying with Mrs Mandela in her premises in Diepkloof extension. I wonder if you want me to tell you what happened when we took this car one night?

CHAIRPERSON: No, we just need to concern ourselves with the incidents. Mostofile, who was he?

MR NTHANDI: Mostofile was a resident in White City.


MR NTHANDI: Dalinks was Mrs Mandela's driver.

CHAIRPERSON: Ms Coleridge.

MS COLERIDGE: On that very same page, you stated, that's the last paragraph,

"Mrs Mandela warned me that they had been arrested and there might mean a possibility that I could also be wanted."

Can you just explain that conversation to us and when that took place exactly?

MR NTHANDI: It is when Sizwe and the others were arrested, I was not present there, I was at my place in Orlando East. The person who got information first after they were arrested was Mrs Mandela. She made sure that she would get the chance to talk to me and warn me that Sizwe and the others were arrested. It was possible that they would come and identify me or point me out and I made this young man tell me that Mrs Mandela was looking for me, driving in a kombi and I got a shock because she wouldn't come to my township and I was very surprised when I got that message and I was told that she was driving with Ninja Dalinks in a microbus and Mostofile was not there. I went to a certain house because I couldn't go there during the day. I used to go there late in the evening. When I was still in this house, apparently Mrs Mandela met with somebody else who told her that I was in that particular house, then she sent Ninja to come and fetch me inside the house and then I went to the car to talk to her. She told me that Sizwe and the others were arrested. In the bus it was myself, Ninja Dalinks and Mrs Mandela. We left for Diepkloof Extension, we got into the house, I was told at that time that Sizwe was arrested. When we got into her house, we went to the back rooms and then later on she called me as she was in the big house and then she told me that we were to leave to go to White City where Sizwe and the others were and I heard that Sizwe put his AK47 behind the stove. We left for the White City. It was myself, Dalinks and Mostofile. We went to White City and we parked the car at a certain corner. We alighted from the vehicle, myself and Ninja. We first looked at the house and we later got in and there was chaos in the house, everything was just broken and then we checked behind the stove, but there was nothing and we left the house.

MS COLERIDGE: So did Mrs Mandela know as to why Sizwe and the others were arrested? Did she know about the attack on Sgt Morgets' home and that you were also involved in that incident? MR NTHANDI: I never discussed that with her, I cannot say for sure whether she knew or not because I never discussed that with her.

MS COLERIDGE: Thank you Chairperson, I have no further questions.


CHAIRPERSON: Thank you. Do you have any re-examination Mr Koopedi?

MR KOOPEDI: Nothing in re-exam, thanks Chairperson.


CHAIRPERSON: Mr Sibanyoni, do you have any questions you'd like to put to the applicant?

MR SIBANYONI: Just some few clarifications, Mr Chairperson.

Mr Nthandi, you attended a crash-course. Were you trained being six altogether, or were you individually trained?

MR NTHANDI: We were trained as a group. Someone would demonstrate in front of us, but most of the times it was theory, somebody would demonstrate in front of us.

MR SIBANYONI: Did your unit, your MK unit have a specific name?


MR SIBANYONI: And I didn't understand you properly, what did your duties entail as a person who is second in command, that is relating to the unit, what did you exactly do as compared to the other members of the unit?

MR NTHANDI: One of my duties, I would go and assist in the guard work, or guard the house during the night and make sure that people responsible for that, were doing their job very well and see if they were not doing anything wrong in the premises and I also had to collect information from the township for him. I would listen and get information on his behalf.

MR SIBANYONI: Isn't it so that maybe working in the garden was just a cover-up for any person to think that maybe you're just a person who's working with the garden and the reason for that was that you should be close to Mama?

MR NTHANDI: Are you talking about me working in the garden?

MR SIBANYONI: Didn't you say so?

MR NTHANDI: No, I didn't say that. I did not say that.

JUDGE DE JAGER: Wasn't he say that he was working as a guard?

MR NTHANDI: That is indeed so, Chairperson, he said he was working as a guard. It may have been interpreted as gardening, but that's what he meant, as a guard.

MR SIBANYONI: Okay, thank you. And lastly, your unit, Sizwe Sithole was the Commander, was there any person who was the political officer or you never had such a person who was playing that role?

INTERPRETER: Can the question please be repeated?

MR SIBANYONI: We understand that Sizwe Sithole was a Commander of the unit. Normally in some unit there would be a person whose duties would be a political Commissar. Was there any such person in the unit?

MR NTHANDI: No. I know no such person. In my mind I thought that there were other people that he would meet with, that's what I was thinking, that perhaps as a Commander, as our Commander, there were also other people, but it was very important for us to keep our identity a secret. That is what was on my mind at the time. I was not very close to him. We would meet and after that I would leave.

MR SIBANYONI: So while being a Commander, Sizwe was also teaching you politics?


MR SIBANYONI: Thank you. No further questions, Mr Chairperson.

CHAIRPERSON: Judge de Jager, any questions that you'd like to put?

JUDGE DE JAGER: No questions.

CHAIRPERSON: Mr Nthandi, just very briefly, the hand grenade that was thrown at Mr Morgets house, do you know whereabouts it landed? Did it hit the house or land in the back yard?

MR NTHANDI: The hand grenade just exploded and I saw dust and that is when we jumped but there was no flame, it was just a thick dust that was in the air.

CHAIRPERSON: So you don't know whether it hit the house, or whether it landed in the garden or the yard? Did you notice any damage to the house that might have been caused by the hand grenade?

MR NTHANDI: It was during the night. We did not get inside to check, we were just on the other side at the front of the house and even the following day, I never set my foot on those premises.

CHAIRPERSON: And you say you saw Sgt Morgets in the house while you were firing, is that correct? Did you see him through the window?

MR NTHANDI: No, I did not see him and I cannot even identify him.

CHAIRPERSON: Did you see anybody in the house, whether there was anybody in the house?


CHAIRPERSON: Were you told before the operation whether Sgt Morgets had a family who may be there on the premises or not?

MR NTHANDI: Sizwe told me that the sergeant was a divorcee.

CHAIRPERSON: And do you know - did you learn at all at any stage whether anybody was injured in the attack, Sgt Morgets, did he get injured at all, do you know or not?

MR NTHANDI: I heard that afterwards. Goodman and the others were arrested and after that I met them. They told me when we met at Maputo that there was a mother and child in the house.

CHAIRPERSON: Did you hear whether any of them were injured, or anybody at all, in the attack?


CHAIRPERSON: Mr Koopedi, do you have any questions arising out of questions that have been put by members of the Panel?

MR KOOPEDI: No other questions, thank you Chairperson.


JUDGE DE JAGER: Sorry. Did you hear windows being broken and shattered after the explosion?

MR NTHANDI: I just heard an explosion, but I think the windows were broken while I was firing, directing to the windows.

CHAIRPERSON: Any questions arising out of the last one? Any questions arising?


MS COLERIDGE: No questions.


CHAIRPERSON: Mr Nthandi, thank you, that concludes your testimony.


CHAIRPERSON: Mr Koopedi, do you have any other witnesses to call?

MR KOOPEDI: We're calling no other witnesses Chairperson and that will be the application.

CHAIRPERSON: Thank you. Ms Coleridge are there any other witnesses to be called?

MS COLERIDGE: No witnesses are going to be called, thank you, Chairperson.

CHAIRPERSON: Mr Koopedi do you have any submissions you'd like to make?

MR KOOPEDI: A very brief one, Chairperson.

MR KOOPEDI IN ARGUMENT: Chairperson, Honourable

Committee Members, it's my submission that this is a straight-forward amnesty application. The applicant applies for amnesty for two incidents, being the planting of two limpet mines at the Orlando Police Station and also participating in the attack of Sgt Morgets' house in Orlando West, Soweto.

Chairperson, this applicant was never arrested for these incidents. My submission is that he was under no pressure to bring forward this application and it is my further submission that he has at all times acted, or at all relevant times acted under the orders of his Commander, the late Sizwe.

Now I finally wish to submit that this applicant has told you the whole truth with regards to all the relevant facts. Both actions had a clear political motive and that there was no personal gain on his part. I therefore ask this Honourable Committee to grant amnesty to this applicant.

Thank you Chairperson.

CHAIRPERSON: Thank you Mr Koopedi.

JUDGE DE JAGER: Mr Koopedi do you know whether the other people applied for amnesty, the other involved people? Sizwe is deceased, but what about Goodman?

MR KOOPEDI: It appears these people did not apply for amnesty. We tried to find out but we couldn't trace any application to this one.

MS COLERIDGE: Chairperson, ...of assistance. Stonkie Mavuso was here yesterday, as well as Philemon, also of the implicated parties and we did double check as well that they did not apply for amnesty.

CHAIRPERSON: Thank you Ms Coleridge. Ms Coleridge, do you have any submissions you would like to make?

MS COLERIDGE: No submissions. I concur with my colleague, Chairperson.


MS COLERIDGE: I just want to thank the applicant for being so brave as to come forward with all the facts in the case and assisting the Commission in our mandate in creating a completer picture of the past, Chairperson. Thank you.

CHAIRPERSON: Thank you. Mr Nthandi, that brings a conclusion to this hearing. All that remains is for us to make our decision which we will reserve because we'll hand it down in written form, which we hope will be as soon as possible in the near future. Mr Koopedi, thank you for your assistance. Ms Coleridge, thank you for your assistance in this matter.

That then brings this hearing to an end. We've got others to proceed with today, but I see it's five to eleven, so this would be a convenient time to take the short tea adjournment, when we'll proceed. Which matter - you don't know which matter we're going to proceed with afterwards? I'll leave that in your hands.

MR KOOPEDI: I believe Chairperson, we'll be proceeding with the matter of Rapholo after the tea break.

CHAIRPERSON: Thank you Mr Koopedi. We'll take the adjournment now, the short tea adjournment.



CHAIRPERSON: Thank you. We'll now start ...(intervention)

MS COLERIDGE: Chairperson, I'm sorry to do this to the Committee, but Mr Rapholo and Mr Koopedi are still consulting and they're not ready to proceed yet.


MS COLERIDGE: There was just some misunderstanding.

CHAIRPERSON: We were told to come in.

MR KOOPEDI: My apologies Chairperson, I wasn't aware you were coming in.

CHAIRPERSON: No sorry, we were told that it was ready to start.

JUDGE DE JAGER: Could I just ask, Mr Koopedi, did he receive indemnity?

MR KOOPEDI: Yes, he did.

JUDGE DE JAGER: For all the acts he's applying for now, or not for all of them?

MR KOOPEDI: ...(indistinct - mike not on)

JUDGE DE JAGER: And yes, something else you could consider is, amnesty for whatever and wherever I may be implicated, that's the one we had trouble with before.

MR KOOPEDI: ...(indistinct - mike not on)

CHAIRPERSON: Thank you. We'll adjourn again and start as soon as you're ready.





--------------------------------------------------------------------------ON RESUMPTION

CHAIRPERSON: Yes thank you. Yes, we'll now commence with the hearing of Mr Jacob Mpasa Rapholo. I'd like at this stage just for the legal representatives to kindly place themselves on record.

MR KOOPEDI: Chairperson, I know that I gave the undertaking that we will be proceeding with Mr Rapholo's matter immediately after the break, but there were certain developments with regard to yet another matter which we were supposed to hear today and one would ask the indulgence of going into that matter, it won't take us more than a few minutes.

CHAIRPERSON: Certainly, Mr Koopedi.

MR KOOPEDI: This is the matter of Mr Meyers Williams. It's on the roll, yes, with reference number AM3620/96. I have been on the phone with Mr Williams. He's not able to come here. I must say, Chairperson, that from perusing the documents, I was of the impression that I would advise him to withdraw his application because I thought that it did not meet with certain requirements, particularly whether or not he received personal gain. After talking to him on the phone, he indicated his unwillingness to proceed with this application particularly because he's no more in prison and he would only have been interested in the matter if he was still in prison, so he has instructed me over the phone to withdraw this application.

CHAIRPERSON: Thank you very much Mr Koopedi. Any comment Ms Coleridge?

MS COLERIDGE: Chairperson, Mr Sebethe is actually the legal representative.

CHAIRPERSON: Sorry, Mr Sebethe, are you appearing for the victim?

MR SEBETHE: That's correct, Mr Chairman. Thank you.


MR SEBETHE: Mr Chairman, I had instructions to oppose the amnesty, however, now I've just been informed by my colleague that the applicant is no longer interested in this matter. I was representing the victim, Mr Altol Mafunga.

CHAIRPERSON: Mr Mafunga being the driver of the vehicle at the time that it was hijacked?

MR SEBETHE: That's correct, Mr Chairman.

CHAIRPERSON: Your initial, Mr Sebethe?

MR SEBETHE: It's M. Therefore, Mr Chairman, we're not going to - there's nothing we can do.

CHAIRPERSON: Thank you Mr Sebethe. Yes, thank you Mr Koopedi, we've recorded now that this application has been withdrawn, not from the roll, but withdrawn as an application. Thank you very much.

MR KOOPEDI: We are then ready to proceed with the matter of Mr Rapholo.




CHAIRPERSON: Mr Koopedi are you appearing for the applicant?

MR KOOPEDI: That is indeed so, Chairperson. I am Brian Koopedi, I am appearing for Col Rapholo in this application.


MS COLERIDGE: Chairperson, I appear on behalf of Mr Gilau

CHAIRPERSON: Sorry, if you could just spell that name please, or have I asked you a difficult question?

MS COLERIDGE: No, just it's on my writing pad Chairperson and it's just being used at the moment. It is Mr Gert G-I-L-A-U.

CHAIRPERSON: Yes, thank you. I take it your client's going to be giving evidence, Mr Koopedi?

MR KOOPEDI: That is indeed so. He is ready to be sworn in, Chairperson.

JACOB MPASA RAPHOLO: (sworn states)

CHAIRPERSON: Thank you very much. Mr Koopedi.

MR KOOPEDI: Thank you Chairperson.

EXAMINATION BY MR KOOPEDI: Col Rapholo, I am showing to you a document from the bundle of documents before this Honourable Committee, from page 4 thereof, until page 10. Is this your application form?


MR KOOPEDI: Do you confirm the contents, or rather that you wrote this application form?


MR KOOPEDI: You will realise, Chairperson, that this has not been commissioned by a Commissioner of Oaths and we will ask that that fault be ...(intervention)

CHAIRPERSON: Colonel, do you confirm the contents of the application form to be true and correct?

MR RAPHOLO: That is correct.

CHAIRPERSON: Yes, Mr Koopedi.

MR KOOPEDI: And Colonel, you are applying for amnesty for some seventeen incidents. Chairperson, this - is it correct that you are applying for amnesty for seventeen incidents?

MR RAPHOLO: Yes, it's like that.

MR KOOPEDI: Chairperson, these incidents appear as charges from page 22 to page 30 of the bundle of documents before you. Now you state in paragraph seven of your application form that you were a member of the African National Congress and Umkhonto weSizwe. When did you become a member of the African National Congress and the MK?

MR RAPHOLO: I joined the ANC and MK in 1985.

MR KOOPEDI: Where did you join the ANC?

MR RAPHOLO: Firstly I went to Botswana and then proceeded to Zambia and Angola.

MR KOOPEDI: Did you receive any military training as a member of MK?


MR KOOPEDI: Where did you receive this training?

MR RAPHOLO: I trained in Angola and Yugoslavia.

MR KOOPEDI: Now after you had trained, what did you do? Did you come to South Africa?

MR RAPHOLO: I completed my basic training in 1986 and then I returned to Angola where I was deployed in one of the military establishments as a Commander of the outpost until 1987. I went back to Vienna transit camp, which was in Luanda and then there I served as a member of the staff which was responsible for the administration of the camp or the establishment and again I was appointed to be a Company Commander and subsequently I was appointed a Staff Commander. I was responsible for the movement in and out of the establishment and then that was from 1987 until 1988 when I met the late Chris Hani who suggested that I be given a mission to come into the country.

MR KOOPEDI: Now perhaps let's move to the date of the 7th of August 1988. What happened on this date?

MR RAPHOLO: On the 7th of August we were in Botswana, the Botswana border and the South African border. I was with a group of seven people. We were seven, including myself and then we were heavily armed and then on that evening we infiltrated the RSA with the aim of proceeding further into the central Far North, as it was called during those days. Then upon infiltration, we went through Ellisras District and then we based around Beauty, next to the Palala River.

CHAIRPERSON: What was the name of that place?

MR RAPHOLO: Beauty, In Ellisras. I was the Commander of the unit and then we created a temporary base in the morning of the 8th of August 1988 and then we were surprised by a unit of the then South African Police counter insurgency elements which were checking us. Apparently we were detected during the evening when we infiltrated the RSA and then throughout the morning and the day, the police were tracking - they were looking after our tracks and then it was around 4 o'clock ...(intervention)

CHAIRPERSON: Is that in the morning or afternoon now?

MR RAPHOLO: In the afternoon, 16h00 and then I was listening to the news, it was when we heard that the plane of the then President of Botswana was shot in Angola, so always we were listening to news every hour, so while I was listening to news, I heard some movements towards our direction and then I ordered all the men to be on the lookout because it was a movement of a group of people and then during that time, it was winter, and 16h00 during winter is almost dark and then when the police came, one of them spoke in Afrikaans and then he said:

"They are here",

meaning that they are here. So I ordered the men to shoot at the police because during that time, there were several units of MK which were killed in the North-East of the country, in the Far North in Alldays and we were the third group and then if we couldn't act or open fire, the police were going to pin us down as the language was known during that time.

CHAIRPERSON: Colonel, were you in the bush then, or were you in some sort of a house or structure?

MR RAPHOLO: It was a bush, it was a base in the bush. Then there was a fierce exchange of fire and then during that process hand grenades were used to neutralise the fire from the opposing side and after those hand grenades, I ordered all my men to cease fire and withdrawn. Unfortunately we lost one guy in the name of Benson ...(indistinct) that was his nickname, MK name and his real name now is James Mashilo Kgwatlha.

CHAIRPERSON: Just repeat that surname.

MR RAPHOLO: James Mashilo Kgwatlha, K-G-W-A-T-L-H-A, so he died on the scene of the fight, so all six of us, we managed to get out of the scene, but myself and my Commissar, my Commissar was my Deputy, were injured, we had slight injuries because of the shrapnel of the hand grenades. So we regrouped.

JUDGE DE JAGER: Were the hand grenades thrown by the police or by you?

MR RAPHOLO: We started first, then it was from both sides.

MR SIBANYONI: Who was your Commissar who was injured as well?

MR RAPHOLO: It's the late Mike Makoena.

MR SIBANYONI: Thank you.

MR RAPHOLO: We regrouped and then he was unaccounted for. My Commissar was unaccounted for until the following morning when he was arrested by the Botswana Defence Force. Five of us, we managed to retreat as a group and then we retreated about five kilometres and then I said we must hide again because the helicopter, the Cessna plane and all sorts of army trucks were moving around, so it was not safe to run all over the terrain, because it was going to pose a danger to ourselves. Fortunately it was dark, it was about six or clock when we decided to stop running and then the helicopter withdrew because of darkness and the small plane was still hovering in the air and then during that darkness we successfully went back to Botswana and then in Botswana we surrendered ourselves to the authorities and we were deported back to Zambia.

MR KOOPEDI: Let's go to 1989 or perhaps let me ask, when did you have an opportunity to come back into the country?

CHAIRPERSON: Sorry Mr Koopedi, before you move on, do you know whether there were any casualties on the police side of this incident that you've referred to or are you unaware?

MR RAPHOLO: At that moment, I was not aware of the casualties, we only learned the following day, or during that day through the radio that so many people were injured, one policeman was killed, that we learned from the media and that...(indistinct) media.

MR KOOPEDI: Now after this incident, did you have an opportunity to come back into the country?

MR RAPHOLO: Yes, another opportunity was given in 1989. The reason was, our intention was not to fight the police at Ellisras, that was unplanned contact, our intention was to go and deploy inside the country and then what happened was that since that route we were going to use already is no longer viable for us, we had to change the front, so towards the end of 1989 we were infiltrated again from Swaziland, so we moved from Lusaka to Mozambique and then Mozambique we went to Swaziland and Swaziland we came to South Africa, that is in 1989.

MR KOOPEDI: When you came through in 1989, were you alone or were there other people with you?

MR RAPHOLO: Well due to some experiences of the difficulties of fighting a guerilla warfare in South Africa, it was very difficult to infiltrate more than two people at the same time because during that time there was a state of emergency and then the askaris were very active in road blocks, in patrolling with the Security Forces and then they were identifying our comrades and the possibility of being killed in a large number was there, so it was decided that to play it safe, myself and the late William Madisi infiltrate the country to come and prepare bases for the rest of the members who remained in Mozambique.

MR KOOPEDI: What did this preparing of bases entail? Actually what were you supposed to come and do?

MR RAPHOLO: Well our briefing was that we must base around Pietersburg, that is Lebowakgomo, Bochum, Mankweng, Seshego and all other areas surrounding Pietersburg, with the aim of fighting from inside, not fighting along the borders and it was a message that there might be a possibility that the then apartheid government could not level the playing field for negotiations or continue with their rule at that time and therefore the ANC was planning an insurrection, so to have a successful insurrection, you would need to have armed combatants inside the country.

CHAIRPERSON: From which portion of the country do you personally hail from? What's your place where you were born and bred?

MR RAPHOLO: I was born in Pietersburg.

CHAIRPERSON: So you were going to familiar terrain?


MR KOOPEDI: Now when you say ...(intervention)

JUDGE DE JAGER: The small place of Bochum, isn't that so?


MR KOOPEDI: When you say you were to base as Seshego, Lebowakgomo, what do you exactly mean? Do you mean you were to set up a base there, and what, have weapons there? What actually do you mean?

MR RAPHOLO: Our task - we had various tasks which were laid ahead of us. By creating bases, we were supposed to create bases, that in terms of houses and also in the bush, because you know South Africa doesn't have a bush like in Angola where you can place troops in the terrain. We need to be within the people. So our role was to bring as many weapons as possible, to train as many people as possible and conduct operations, so that was the role we were going to play around those areas.

MR KOOPEDI: Okay. Please explain to this Honourable Committee what actually happened to you and the late William Mandisi, after you were infiltrated into the country late in 89.


Well myself and Willie Mandisi, we didn't know each other by real names, we just knew each other by combat names and then when we came inside the country, we based in different places. We were based in Zebediela at the beginning of December and then we also went to Lebowakgomo, Turfloop where there was a large number of South African Defence Force troops and then we were conducting reconnaissance and then during the process myself and Willie, we agreed that we must have a chance to go and see our families. I went to Bochum to see my family and Willie went to Dennilton, I mean to Groblersdal where he was born, to go and see his family and then we met again after the 16th of December and then during our separation we met different contacts. I met my old friends and then he met his and then it was very difficult sometimes to know what actually happened, because we didn't tell each other. If I met somebody in Turfloop whom I schooled with, according to the rule of military combat work, I was not supposed to tell him what actually happened between me and other people, so that in case of arrest, the other people must be safe.

So what happened is that during the process of going up and down, conducting that reconnaissance, there was a problem of finance, money and then we discussed a lot, to say we have two options, to go back to Mozambique and get more money, or raise money inside the country. Then what happened was, to have money we must have a car and then what happened, during my separations with Willie, it happened that there was a robbery in Roedtan, as is stated in the documents and then when he came back he informed me about the robbery and then - but I did not approve it because that was not the aim and we all agreed that such incident will never be happen because it was not right and then again there was an incident in Pretoria.

We went to Pretoria to look for somebody, we couldn't find him and then there was a desperate need for transport and then all of us, myself and Willie, agreed that somehow we need to get a vehicle and then unfortunately we went to, I forgot the name of the place, where we found two white guys, the other one was old and the other one was still young, in his late twenties and then the aim was not to kill, but to get the vehicle. So what happened, Willie took out a Makarov pistol, he pointed the two guys and then we demanded the keys for the vehicle and then there was resistance to give the keys. Unfortunately there was a shot which was fired, two shots in fact, one hit the old man and the other one hit on the floor, so the whole exercise failed and then we escaped.

CHAIRPERSON: Escaped without the vehicle?


Yes. The reason why there was such involvement was that there was a desperate need for us to be out of Pretoria at that time and well it is regrettable that that incident took place and I took full responsibility for that because I was the Commander and the reason was that the two guys were white and those were some of the arguments that we had, that these guys were white and they were from the Railways, but if you check today, ten years ago you may realise that there was something amiss, we were really from the sick society.

So after that we went to ...(intervention)

JUDGE DE JAGER: Sorry, was this man wounded or was he killed in the process?

MR RAPHOLO: He was wounded. After that we went back to Pietersburg.

CHAIRPERSON: And then when you say you went to Pretoria and went back to Pietersburg and you had this transport problem, how did you travel?


We were using taxis. We went to Pietersburg and where I was staying in Pietersburg, it was on the twelfth of January 1990, myself and the deceased, the late William Mandisi we were in one of the parks in Pietersburg, waiting for sunset because it was difficult to move around during the day, as I've already mentioned that there were many askaris, beside askaris there were people who knew us and then who could have reported our presence to the police and we may end up being arrested, so while we were sitting in the park together with other members of the public, two white policemen came to us, in fact they were spotted by Willie that they are the police and then when we saw the police, two of us we were armed with Makarov pistols and then we hid the pistols within the luggage of food and then when the police came they said what are we doing here and the other one was speaking in Northern Sotho. I replied in Northern Sotho saying: "No, we are just lying here, we are tired and we're eating" and then they wanted to search our luggage. I said: "No, no, there's nothing here, there's only food here and then here there's only a jersey" and then the guy didn't - he only searched our bodies. Then when we said: "Maybe they will leave us alone". The two policemen said no, let's go to the van, a police truck in fact, which was commonly known as ...(indistinct) it was used to collect blacks who were hiding and then when that happened to us, it triggered the old memories of arresting innocent blacks in cities, to us it was a sort of an harassment.

So myself and Willie were caucusing and then saying: "What are we going to do, because these guys, they don't know we are MK operatives, so what are we going to do?" and then we said okay - I said: "No Willie, let's fight from here" and then we differed because it was right in the city of Pietersburg and then fighting there, it may end up being surrounded by a reinforcement of other members of the police, but the reason that I want to put before the Committee is that that incident really ended me as a person, it infringed on my dignity as a South African, sitting in a park and somebody comes and tells me I can't sit here because parks were made for public to sit and all of us here, those who were there, or years before then, we know that there was a law that banned blacks to sit in the parks.

As MK people, ANC members, we were fighting apartheid, those laws were part of apartheid and then that action unfortunately came at a wrong time, when we were wrong people at a wrong place, so the police - me and Willie agreed that we don't fire at the police, we go into the van and conduct ourselves as law abiding citizens.

At the end of the day we went into the van, they locked all of us, together with members of the public, there were about ten people inside the truck and then there was a very painful scene when one guy said he's not alone, he came with his brother and then he has money in the pocket and the brother doesn't have money and they were staying close to 200 kilometres from Pietersburg and he doesn't know what the brother is going to eat and how he is going to go back home and the young policeman didn't want to listen and said: "You're talking rubbish, I don't want to listen to you" and then he said: "Baas, Baas, asseblief, help me" and then the policeman didn't want to understand.

I was next to the door, the door of the truck and then Willie was a little bit next to the cabin and then well, the truck pulled off, it went off with us, moving the whole day with us at the back of the truck and then I made a decision, say: "Now, we are going to escape because at the end of the day we will go to police station, they are going to take our fingerprints, they are going to search us thoroughly and they will discover we are MK operatives and then we are going to be arrested" and it was reasonable that time to fear arrest. The reason was that we knew of several people who were arrested by the police and they didn't come back alive, they were killed or dumped, already there were those stories that once you are arrested, you'll be tortured. There was a fear of torture, more than anything, so we as members of MK, we said instead of being tortured, it's better if the police they can shoot me and kill me, then I'll rest in peace, that was the decision of many of us, so we didn't want to be arrested at all and also being arrested, it means you are going to jeopardise the lives of other people because you'll be forced to talk and reveal certain secrets.

So the truck ultimately went to another park where there were some blacks sitting there, eating, even lunch and so on, then the two policemen, they went to the park, they fetched two guys who were sitting with a lady. They took the two guys and left the lady there and the lady tried to cry and said: "Please, don't take this man, he has got my money, please give me money for taxi. What has he done, what crime has he done?" So the two policemen then left the truck with us being in the back and then when they were still coming, I told Willie: "Now we are going, my friend, we are going to free ourselves" because when they have two people, it became obvious that they are going to open the door and if they open the door, they will want to put the people inside the van and then that will be the opportunity for us to flee and it exactly happened like that. Our weapons were cocked already, we told the people inside the truck, I said: "You keep quiet, we are on our mission" and then when the policemen opened the door and then I shot him in the chest and on the thigh and then all of us, we ran away and then we ran into different directions. I went to Pick 'n Pay centre, I found somebody in the car and then I said: "My friend, as you see me, please take me out of Pietersburg town" and then that guy, he said: "Who are you?" and then I explained to him: "I'm an MK guy and don't tell anybody that you helped me" and then that guy understood and then we passed next to the place where the incident took place to convince that guy and to see there's a lot of policemen, there's an ambulance, there's a lot of sirens, so you see, I'm not tell you lies and the guy believed me and then he dropped me safely in one of the townships in Seshego.

CHAIRPERSON: Did you hear what happened to the policeman who you shot? Did he die?

MR RAPHOLO: No, he didn't die, he survived.

So that was the last day I saw Willie. So it was Friday, the 12th of January 1990 when that incident took place, so all of us that day, we were hiding, not moving around and then the incident was reported widely in the media and there was a serious man-hunt launched by the police and on Sunday I went to Lebowakgomo to look for Willie and then I was told that he survived Friday's incident, so he's safe, so when I was told that he's safe and then I went back to where we were supposed to meet. We were supposed to meet in Dennilton. So in Dennilton, when I arrived in Dennilton, he was not there, that was Sunday. I had to come back and slept in Zebediela, booked in a motel and slept there. Monday the 15th of January 1990, I went back to our base which was in Moria, next to Moria, there was a village next to Moria where we had a safe house.

So when I arrived there I didn't find the owner of the house because he was having the key and then I didn't have the key, the key was with Willie. We had only one key, so when I went to the house, I wanted to use a window to go in because I wanted to get clothes for changing. I spent about five days without changing clothing, nor bathing properly, because we were on the run from the police.

While I was there a kombi came with the owner of the house and a certain guy I didn't now, so they stopped in the shop of that guy where we rented the house and then I went back to them and then I said: "Hello, how are you?" and then he greeted me and then I said: "I'm asking for a key" and then he give me a key and then before I went to the house, I asked him: "Where is Willie?" He said: "No, he was here yesterday, he was here Saturday." "And then what happened?" He said: "No, since I saw him there..." So when he told me that Willie was there and nothing happened, I took it that he's still safe and I'm also still safe, so I took the key, I tried to open the house.

When I opened the house there were a number of policemen sitting inside the house wearing camouflage, so there was no speaking, I just retreated backward and then they opened fire on me. I was shot in the leg and then when I fell down they came running and I was beaten brutally and then they wanted to interrogate me and then I said: "No, I can't give you any information until you take me to Pietersburg hospital" and then I talked to the Commander of the Bravo Unit, they call themselves Bravo Unit, that I will not co-operate, they would rather kill me that time. He said: "Okay, let's take him to hospital".

They put me in at the back of the van with a black policeman guarding me and then I was taken to Pietersburg Provincial Hospital where I was treated for the shots and it's then the incident was reported in the newspapers, that one terrorist was killed and one was arrested. During that time I was not aware that Willie was killed because after killing Willie, the policemen, they kept it secret, it was never, never reported in the media, it was only reported when I was arrested.

CHAIRPERSON: Whereabout - you say you received a shot in the leg?

MR RAPHOLO: Yes, I was shot three times.

CHAIRPERSON: Three times in the leg, yes and did you learn when Willie in fact died?

MR RAPHOLO: I only learned while I was in hospital.

CHAIRPERSON: That he'd died on the Saturday?

MR RAPHOLO: He died on Saturday.

CHAIRPERSON: Also at that safe - supposedly safe house?

MR RAPHOLO: Ja and the owner of the house, apparently he knew, he was used to set a trap for me because he could have told me, because Willie was shot about a kilometre away from the house, so that people in the village must not know what happened.

MR KOOPEDI: I want to take you a little back, perhaps on something you might have omitted. The gentleman before me, indicate that this could have been on the 11th of December 1989, do you recall an instance where yourself, Johannes Mamaika and Charles, I take it that would be Charles Seakamela, went to Nelspruit?

MR RAPHOLO: Ja, when we - I forgot it, because it's almost eleven years now. When we infiltrated the country, we could not bring all the weapons into the country, so we organised a place, we got somebody and then we told him we were smugglers, not MK operatives because people were told to report on the activities of MK, so that guy believed us and then we left some weapons with him and then myself, as is mentioned, we went to Nelspruit and collected these weapons.

MR KOOPEDI: Okay. What did you do with these weapons? Well what was the aim of bringing these weapons, were they to go to the bases that you were supposed to ...(intervention)

MR RAPHOLO: Ja, the whole policy was part of preparation for the seizure of power, as it was the objective of the ANC at that time, and the two weapons, that was two AKs and some hand grenades, were never used throughout our stay. The only weapons which were used were the two Makarov pistols.

MR KOOPEDI: Okay. Now I want to take you back again to some time before the 15th of January, it could have been on the 7th of January 1990. Do you remember an instance when yourself, Charles, Frans and Willie went to the Government offices and tried to steal a car? Could you tell this Honourable Committee about that incident?

MR RAPHOLO: It is like that because our belief was that Government property was the enemy's property and therefore, if we wanted the vehicle, we could go and get one from the Government and that was the perception at that time and we know that the ANC was spreading a campaign against the Nationalist Government, the Homelands, as well as the TBV States, so all those were seen as oppressive regimes and anything that belonged to that regime was not respected and that is why we decided that we don't want to take a property from somebody, we rather take a property from the Government.

MR KOOPEDI: Did you succeed in stealing this car?

MR RAPHOLO: No, we could not succeed.

CHAIRPERSON: What did you do? What attempt did you make at stealing that vehicle?

MR RAPHOLO: No, it was just an attempt, we were just there ...(intervention)

CHAIRPERSON: What did you break the window, or how far did you go?

MR RAPHOLO: No, we opened the car and then when we wanted to take it, there was a decision that no, we must leave it because it was late, it was already in the morning.

JUDGE DE JAGER: Is this evidence about charge 10 on page 27?

CHAIRPERSON: Page 27 right at the bottom, you unlawfully attempted to steal a motor vehicle at Lebowakgomo?

MR KOOPEDI: That is evidence relating to that incident.

CHAIRPERSON: So it was a Lebowa Government vehicle?

MR KOOPEDI: That's right, Chairperson. Is it also correct that this vehicle, had you succeeded in stealing it, would have been used in a robbery?

MR RAPHOLO: Yes, that was the - ...(indistinct) robbery, the vehicle was going to be used for many tasks, as I said that we had a lot of tasks ahead of us, that is bringing weapons inside the country, training people, so we needed the use of different vehicles, we didn't want to use particularly this vehicle, because we were going to use it for one day and then we would throw it and look for another one, because if you use a vehicle for a week, you are going to be exposed, so it was going to be used for different tasks.

MR KOOPEDI: Now this robbery, will you please tell the Honourable Committee about it? Did it happen? Did you attempt to involve yourself in the robbery?

MR RAPHOLO: Well, I won't say it happened, there was no robbery which took place, but there were discussions to plan to get money and that money, we decided we get it from the Government and that plan could not go forward due to the lack of transport.

CHAIRPERSON: So you say the only robbery that you know of was the one that was committed by Willie at Roedtan?


CHAIRPERSON: Of which he told you, you weren't present.


CHAIRPERSON: Did he come back with money?

MR RAPHOLO: Ja, he said he got one thousand-something, and it was little. I said: "No, already I had money, so I didn't want to share the spoils."

CHAIRPERSON: Did he tell you why he robbed that garage?

MR RAPHOLO: Because it was December time that time and then we were moving about all the time. He said somehow he over-used his money and then he was stranded with funding.

MR KOOPEDI: Chairperson, I'm asking for a short indulgence, I just want to make sure whether I've gone through the whole ...(intervention)

CHAIRPERSON: Perhaps, while you're doing that, if I could also do that. If you take a look at charge six, Colonel, there's possession of a whole lot of armaments, hand grenades and detonators and stuff like that, machine guns, which you were charged of being in possession of in the District of Ellisras. When you fled after that sortie with the police, did you abandon weaponry there?

MR RAPHOLO: We were heavily loaded in fact, Sir and then that load could not allow us to run and then a lot of consignment was left there.

JUDGE DE JAGER: From charges one to seven, that would relate to the Ellisras incident?

MR KOOPEDI: That's right, that's right Chairperson.

CHAIRPERSON: So charge eight, this is the same place where the attempted theft of the motor vehicle was at this District of Thabamoopo.

MR RAPHOLO: Oh, it's the same place, Bochum.

CHAIRPERSON: Yes, now that one, you've told us about how you tried to steal a car, but you opened the door and decided not to and ran away, but you're also charged with being in possession of two hand grenades - four hand grenades at that place. How would that charge have come about?

MR KOOPEDI: Chairperson, I think the charge eight does not per se relate to the attempted stealing of a vehicle.

CHAIRPERSON: It's the same place though.

MR KOOPEDI: It is the same area, but what actually happened here is that on charge eight he was being charged with being in possession of these weapons at that area without a licence.

CHAIRPERSON: Is that the same area where you were arrested?


CHAIRPERSON: Where the shooting?

MR RAPHOLO: No, it's the area where we had safe houses.

CHAIRPERSON: Okay. So what do you say? Did you have four hand grenades?

MR RAPHOLO: Yes, in one of the safe houses.

CHAIRPERSON: Yes. So you admit that charge, charge eight?


CHAIRPERSON: What - was it just a safe house that you would go to from time to time if you happened to be in the area?

MR RAPHOLO: In fact we were changing places. We were all sleeping in one place, we sleep here today, tomorrow we sleep ...(intervention)

CHAIRPERSON: Ja, but then when you go tomorrow, you leave your hand grenades behind at that place, or what is the position?

MR RAPHOLO: We forgot them because with us we had the detonators. The detonators and hand grenades were separated.

MR KOOPEDI: Now, maybe, let me, to try and clarify this issue, let me ask this question. The weapons you went to fetch from Nelspruit, what did you do with them? Did you not - where did you go with them?

MR RAPHOLO: The two AKs we fetched in Nelspruit, we stored them in Lebowakgomo in one of the safe houses together with the hand grenades. In fact the hand grenades were dug in the soil, that's why we couldn't take them.

CHAIRPERSON: And then just to make sure, charge eleven, twelve, thirteen, these all relate to the incident which took place on the 9th of January at or near SAVD. What is that? Delfos Railway Station. Oh Suid-Afrikaanse Vervoerdienste. Okay, so it's just a railway station, called Delfos Railway Station. Is that the one where you attempted to steal the vehicle and there were the two people and you say the old man was shot?


CHAIRPERSON: That's those three. Okay. Pietersburg, that is the one you've told us about, the shooting of the policemen and the escape. Mankweng, 15th of January, is that the time that you were apprehended.

MR RAPHOLO: I was shot.

CHAIRPERSON: And you were shot and you had the Makarov there. And the other ammunition referred to in charge sixteen, 240 rounds of AK47 ammunition and other ammunition, they were at the safe house, were they?

MR RAPHOLO: The ammunition was the ammunition which was in the magazine, because they count it separate.

CHAIRPERSON: 240 rounds?

MR RAPHOLO: Four magazines, it's eight magazines.

CHAIRPERSON: Of thirty each.

MR RAPHOLO: Four for myself and four for the deceased.

CHAIRPERSON: And they were at the safe house.


CHAIRPERSON: Yes. Mr Koopedi, is there anything relating to the charge that you said you wanted ... (intervention)

MR KOOPEDI: I believe everything has been covered, Chairperson. Now you stated to the police when you were arrested, that you were involved in the Roedtan robbery. Why did you say so? Why did you say so to them, when you say now you were not?

MR RAPHOLO: Okay. Maybe I must relate the incident when I was arrested. When I was arrested, the first question they asked me, the police, they asked me the name and then I gave them my name and then Maj van Wyk, and then he said: "Ja, you were involved in Ellisras", then I said: "Yes" and then he said to me: "We know everything, we've arrested one of your friends and then we know all the incidents that you have done". So the police could link all the incidents we have done, myself and Willie, because the description of victims was that two gentlemen, one was dark in complexion and one was light in complexion, the late Willie was very light in complexion, so the police could link all these incidents and when the police confronted me, I was under pain, I was under pressure, when I told them no, I was not involved and then they - even the question of shooting a policeman, I never agreed that I did shoot the policeman and then they said: "It's you, we know it's you" because of the description by members of the public, they saw us.

CHAIRPERSON: They couldn't have linked you and Willie to the Roedtan robbery because you were not there.

MR RAPHOLO: I was not there, but Willie was with somebody, they were two people, so always two people moving together, that's why they linked that.

CHAIRPERSON: So did you actually say to the police at that stage that you were involved in the Roedtan robbery?

MR RAPHOLO: I said no, but they said no, no, no ways.

CHAIRPERSON: They put it down in the statement, or whatever.


MR KOOPEDI: Do you think, oh, let me not say think - have you told this Honourable Committee the whole truth, with regards to all the relevant facts, you know, in as far as your memory can assist you?

MR RAPHOLO: As far as I'm concerned, I went to the length of making a full disclosure. Why I agreed to almost all of the incidents it's because the aim of this exercise is to tell the truth and also acknowledge wrongs which were committed during the struggle because we as MK people as well as the SADF, the SAP and other agents who were working for the State, we were - no side was clean and therefore I say I've told everything that I know that I've done and that was done by the men which were under my command. It was difficult sometimes to control a person who was far away from you, but it is universally acceptable that if you are a Commander and somebody commits an offence or a crime away from you, you as a Commander, you are still accountable for his actions.

CHAIRPERSON: Just on that one, Colonel, prior to the Roedtan robbery, prior to you going to Bochum and Willie going down to Groblersdal to see his family, had the two of you discussed or even discussed the possibility of a robbery, or had you contemplated that that might be an option to raise funds?

MR RAPHOLO: Yes, we did contemplate but we never specified.

CHAIRPERSON: Yes, but it had been discussed that it might be an option?

MR RAPHOLO: Ja, but not to rob individual people.


MR RAPHOLO: But to rob institutions which are linked to the Government, that was the ...

CHAIRPERSON: Now let's say that Willie raped somebody while he was there, would you accept responsibility for that?

MR RAPHOLO: As a Commander yes, because I shall have failed in my duties.

CHAIRPERSON: Although it had nothing at all to do with any political motive or objective? Because what I'm trying to get at, you see, with the robbery okay, you've said you discussed it, it might have been an option, not against private civilians, but against State organisations or whatever, but if there was a crime that was completely disassociated with any political objective whatsoever, such as rape let's say, just for an example, on what basis would you accept responsibility for that?

MR RAPHOLO: Well, maybe rape is too horrible, but my argument is that as his leader, it was my responsibility to make sure that he does act according to the laws or the laws which or according to the orders or the guidelines which were given by the military headquarters, that we must not endanger civilians and then well, there were incidents where civilians were injured in other operations, but it was not acceptable that innocent people of South Africa should bear the brunt of apartheid, but if it was in the case of a rape, I'll still be accountable because I'm his father, it's like being a father, I can't run away from that, really. I was like a father. It's like a further having a son who does things outside, he reflects - you are still answerable to that person, you can't say when you are in problem: "No, no, no, he's not my son", you can't deny that person. You say: "Okay, he's my son. Maybe I have failed to bring him up in the correct way and then maybe let's give him the second chance." So that is my argument. I don't want to try to be clean saying I've got nothing to do with that and then he did it on his own, that will be unfair to the deceased.

CHAIRPERSON: Yes, thank you.

MR KOOPEDI: Now, do you think that all the actions you were involved in, had a political - were politically motivated and had political objectives?

MR RAPHOLO: Well, if you take the South African situation in context, all of us, black and white, we were the product of a sick society and all the activities which happened before 1990, when Mandela was released, most of us we considered them as actions which were done by members of a sick society, with the exception of the robbery issues which the motive was to promote our political objectives, but it was not somehow the policy of the ANC to encourage combatants to go and rob, although the situation on the ground dictated how people conducted themselves, but most of the cases, I'll start with the one of entering the country illegally, Ellisras shootout, it had a political motive because we didn't gain anything there because it was within the policy of the ANC to fight members of the Security Forces. Bringing weapons inside the country, it was in line with the policy of the ANC, to arm our people, to bring ...(indistinct) into the country and topple the apartheid regime. It is unfortunate that the two robberies happened and the innocent people were, somehow they got injured and it is deeply regrettable. In a normal society, no one can encourage that. If you look back eleven years ago, or ten years ago, if you tell somebody, or somebody asks me: "And then, were you involved in such incidents?" it will be sort of an unbelievable story, a story that never happened, so I really say some of the actions, they happened within the context of the South African situation which was characterised by conflict, it was characterised by race hatred, it was characterised by denial of opportunities, it was characterised by so many things which were directed against blacks and we saw ourselves as the new liberators of the oppressed black people and then during the way, there's no way you can travel a journey without bumping on the rocks. We do accept that during the way there were mistakes which happened and we take full responsibility and to the victims, we really apologise, it shouldn't have happened that people should die and lose their lives.

MR KOOPEDI: And like, as you said, did you personally receive any benefit, financially or otherwise, for having involved yourself in this struggle?

MR RAPHOLO: My involvement in the struggle was to volunteer.

MR KOOPEDI: Therefore you did not receive anything ...(intervention)

MR RAPHOLO: I did not receive anything.

MR KOOPEDI: Thank you. Chairperson that will be the evidence-in-chief of this applicant.


CHAIRPERSON: Thank you. Just before I ask Ms Coleridge, just for record purposes, this indictment that appears in the documentation pages 21 et seq, which sets out the seventeen charges and the alternative charges, is it correct you never went to trial on those? A Judgment was given suspending the trial, pending the outcome of your indemnity application?

MR RAPHOLO: Yes, Sir. I was never convicted due to the following reasons. During my - we were arrested just two weeks before Mandela was released and then the face of the politics of South Africa changed completely and then even in detention you could see the policemen, their attitude changed and then in courts and so on and then my lawyers argued that there's a possibility that the applicant could get immunity from prosecution and then Judge Spoelstra decided that my case be postponed indefinitely and then he recommended that a bail arrangement must be made for me, so until 1994, from 1991 until 1994, I was on R5 000 bail, waiting for my case to be finalised and then during the process, the former President F W de Klerk, gave me partial indemnity, as I've already handed the documents with my submission, he handed me the partial amnesty, which we were not satisfied because there were other cases which were more serious than this one, where people received amnesty. That was the argument by my lawyers. Then in 1994, just before the elections, the then President signed the final amnesty on the cases. Then I also want to bring to the attention of the Committee that the reason why I applied, well the President gave me immunity from prosecution, I could have relaxed and said no, I got indemnity and then I don't have to apply for the TRC for indemnity, the reason that I applied was that you must settle the score with the victims, the victims must know - I must know them, they must know me and then another issue was that if somebody does not apply for amnesty, it means that person is not regretting and also it can bring again civil liabilities against an individual.

CHAIRPERSON: Thank you. Ms Coleridge, are there any questions you'd like to put to the applicant?

MS COLERIDGE: Yes, thank you Chairperson. Just to place on record that it's my instructions not to oppose the applicant's amnesty application, Chairperson. There's just a few questions I'd like to ask the applicant in relation to the train station incident.

CHAIRPERSON: Just before you start, you spelled Mr Gilau name, but I see it doesn't concur with the spelling in the indictment where it is spelled, page 29...

MS COLERIDGE: It's incorrectly spelled there, Chairperson.

CHAIRPERSON: So it's not Gilali, that L-I should come out and be substituted with a U?

MS COLERIDGE: Correct, Chairperson. A-U.

CHAIRPERSON: Yes, well L-I comes out, it's got an A there already. Yes.

CROSS-EXAMINATION BY MS COLERIDGE: I just want to ask you some questions in relation to that incident. Mr Gilau was a victim in that particular incident. We see that you also stated that you were armed on that particular day, can you tell us what weapons did you have on you?

CHAIRPERSON: Just to make it clear, this is the incident that took place at ...(intervention)

MR RAPHOLO: Pretoria Station.

CHAIRPERSON: ...(indistinct) Railway Station, yes.

MR RAPHOLO: Yes, I was also armed at that time, but I was only carrying a Makarov. Both of us were carrying Makarov pistols.

MS COLERIDGE: Is that the only weapons that you had with you?

MR RAPHOLO: That was the only weapon.

MS COLERIDGE: Did you fire any shots?

MR RAPHOLO: I can't remember because there was panic after - because when my colleague fired, the aim was not to shoot anybody, then when he fired there was panic, I can't remember whether the shot went out or not, but there were two shots which went out at that time.

MS COLERIDGE: Just for your information as well, Mr Gilau says that a shot was fired at him and you were the person that fired the shot at him, but he missed the shot. Seeing that you can't remember but he can recall that you shot at him and then Willie then shot at Mr van Dyk who was - who also worked there at the time. So you don't dispute that?

MR RAPHOLO: That's why I say, it might have happened because normally during such incidents, there's a panic, you don't know whether the other side is shooting or not, but the intention was not to harm anybody.

MS COLERIDGE: Who was your Commander at the time of this incident?

MR RAPHOLO: I was the Commander. The higher Commander was the military headquarters which was based in Lusaka.

MS COLERIDGE: And who was that? Was there a person that you reported to?

MR RAPHOLO: The Commander of the Army was Mr Joe Modise.

CHAIRPERSON: Yes, but you yourself personally, if you went back, did you have to report to a particular individual or just to headquarters?

MR RAPHOLO: I don't know, in this incident, or in other incidents?

CHAIRPERSON: Well, with regard to this infiltration.


CHAIRPERSON: Which you can regard perhaps as one mission.

MR RAPHOLO: The last infiltration we never reported to anybody because ... (intervention)

CHAIRPERSON: Yes, but if you had to, who would you report to? If you went back to say what's happening, who would you have reported to?

MR RAPHOLO: Chief of Staff, at that time it was Chris Hani.

MS COLERIDGE: And did you report to Chris Hani relating to these incidents? Did you give him a report-back?

MR RAPHOLO: Except the one in Ellisras. The others, we never had chance to go back to exile, as I was arrested and the late Willie Mandisi was killed by the police.

MS COLERIDGE: Chairperson, Mr Gilau says that on the - actually just to get some clarification on Willie Mandisi's death and they were actually responsible for identifying the body and they identified Willie as the person who shot at them and Mr Gilau made a statement, it's on page 164 of the bundle Chairperson, it was the 19th, he actually went to go and identify the body.

CHAIRPERSON: ...(indistinct - mike not on) the body of Willie Mandisi.

MS COLERIDGE: According to his information, he stated that this identification was a week after Willie was actually killed.

CHAIRPERSON: Yes, well it seems from here that the identification took place, there's two - ja, on the 19th of January and according to the evidence of the applicant, Willie would have been killed on the 13th, so - because the Friday was the incident and then the Saturday - that was the 12th and the Saturday 13th, so a week's good enough, I suppose, yes, just short of a week.

MS COLERIDGE: That's correct, Chairperson. We have no further questions, thank you Chairperson.


JUDGE DE JAGER: Could Mr Gilau perhaps tell us what happened to Mr van Dyk? Did he see him later? Did he recover from the wound, or what happened?

MR GILAU: Chairperson, I saw him after the time. We worked together again, after which I was promoted to Nelspruit and subsequently I heard that he went on pension and recently I heard that he was living with his mother in Vereeniging. He survived the incident, however his work circumstances were completely disadvantaged after the incident and he could no longer offer the same co-operation after the incident than prior to the incident. His entire system shut down after the incident, despite his physical recovery. That is all.

JUDGE DE JAGER: If you were to meet or make contact with him, I think it would be advisable if you could convey to him what the applicant has stated.

MR GILAU: Honourable Chairperson, I do not have any means of contact with him, but the last I heard, he had a brother in Pretoria, but I do not believe that I will be able to contact him easily again, nor convey to him what the applicant has stated regarding the incident.

CHAIRPERSON: Do you have any re-examination, Mr Koopedi?

MR KOOPEDI: Nothing in re-exam, thank you Chairperson.


CHAIRPERSON: Mr Sibanyoni, do you have any questions you would like to ask the applicant?

MR SIBANYONI: Thank you Mr Chairperson, just one. Mr Rapholo, would you say your colleague used the money stolen at Roedtan to benefit him personally, or was it to enable him to carry on with the activities of MK?

MR RAPHOLO: I would say he used the money to enable him to carry out the duties of MK because the money was used mainly to pay for transport, because that was the only means, we were using taxis and so on.

MR SIBANYONI: The only question, Mr Chairperson.

CHAIRPERSON: Judge de Jager, any questions that you would like to ask?

JUDGE DE JAGER: No, I haven't got a question, but I would like to make a statement. I think you should be recommended on the attitude you took and the responsibility you accept for the persons under your command and I hope you'll continue doing so in your new work you're presently doing.

CHAIRPERSON: Yes, thank you. I take it - well, are there any questions arising from the question?

MR KOOPEDI: No questions on my side, Chairperson.


MS COLERIDGE: No questions Chairperson.


MR KOOPEDI: And indeed Chairperson, that is the application. We are not calling any other witnesses.

CHAIRPERSON: Thank you Mr Koopedi. Ms Coleridge, are you calling any witnesses?

MS COLERIDGE: No Chairperson, I'm no. That is our case, Chairperson.

CHAIRPERSON: That therefore brings the evidenced in this matter to an end and your testimony, Colonel. You may stand down now, but I'll ask Mr Koopedi if he has any submissions that he would like to make.


MR KOOPEDI IN ARGUMENT: Thank you Chairperson, Honourable Committee Members. I have a very brief submission.

It is quite evident that this application involves quite a number of instances. We were favoured with a copy of the charge sheets and so to speak, the people then did our work in summarising the charges and the issues before this Honourable Committee today.

My submission Chairperson, Honourable Committee Members, is that this is a very straightforward amnesty application. The applicant before you had received initially conditional immunity or indemnity and was finally given full indemnity on all these matters, but he still went on to complete his application form, tried to detail all the incidents he was involved in or a member of his unit was involved in. In my mind this tells me that this is a very honest applicant, an applicant who has also not hesitated to take blame, regardless of whether he was personally involved in an operation.

My submission, Chairperson, Honourable Committee Members, is that this applicant before you has complied with the very important requirement of full disclosure. He has disclosed all the relevant facts to you. It's also my submission, Chairperson and esteemed Committee Members that all these incidents that he was involved in, there was no personal benefit from him and further that they were clearly politically motivated. Where the motive or objective thereof may perhaps be seen as not political, but for instance like in the robbery charges, I would also say that these were committed to enable the applicant and his colleague to proceed with their duties and it is against that background that I will ask the Honourable Committee to grant amnesty to this applicant. Thank you Chairperson.

CHAIRPERSON: Thank you Mr Koopedi. Ms Coleridge.

MS COLERIDGE: Chairperson, we have no further submissions to make Chairperson.


MS COLERIDGE: Just one statement that the victim feels that he can now put the matter to rest, in a sense, Chairperson, but he also feels that all of this has brought up all the emotions all back

again to him and he'll obviously have to deal with it for the next few months, but that's basically all, Chairperson, thank you.

CHAIRPERSON: Thank you Ms Coleridge. That then brings this matter then almost to a conclusion. All that remains is for a decision to be handed down. We shall reserve that decision because we hand them down in a written form and that shall be done as soon as possible in the future.

I'd like to thank Ms Koopedi and Ms Coleridge for their assistance in this matter. I'd like to thank also the applicant and Mr Gilau for the attitude that they have adopted in these proceedings, and I think it's important to this process that people like the applicant and Mr Gilau can sit across a room, face to face with each other and confront the past and come out with the attitude that they have shown today. Thank you very much.

The decision will be handed down, as I've said, in the near future.

Ms Coleridge, that leaves us with one matter on the roll.

MS COLERIDGE: Indeed, Chairperson, that is the Mabika matter. We will continue with that after lunch. We are ready to proceed with that.

CHAIRPERSON: Thank you. We'll now then adjourn for lunch and we'll start when you're ready. Thank you.






CHAIRPERSON: We'll now start with the final matter that's on our roll, that is the application of Mr Thembinkosi Mabika. At this stage I'd request the legal representatives to kindly place themselves on record.

MS RAZAK: Certainly, Chairperson. I'm Radia Razak, instructed by Nthembo and Mohammed attorneys to represent the applicant in this matter.

CHAIRPERSON: Thank you Ms Razak.

MS RAZAK: Thank you.

MS COLERIDGE: Lyn Coleridge, Chairperson, representing Ms Sonya May Spicer, the victim in this incident. Also, my instructions are to oppose the application, Chairperson.

CHAIRPERSON: Thank you Ms Coleridge.

JUDGE DE JAGER: He was accused number one in the trial, which is referred to on page 40, the indictment appears on pages 40. 41 and 42, is that correct?

MS RAZAK: That is correct. That's correct, Judge.

CHAIRPERSON: Ms Razak, I take it the applicant will be giving evidence?

MS RAZAK: Yes, certainly, Chairperson.

THEMBINKOSI MABIKA: (sworn states)

CHAIRPERSON: Thank you. Ms Razak.

MS RAZAK: Chairperson, at the outset, perhaps - I want to refer to the application itself. If you have regard to the bundle, there seems to be about three copies of the application.

CHAIRPERSON: Yes, I've noticed that.

MS RAZAK: None of them have been signed by a Commissioner of Oaths. Perhaps it would be ...(indistinct) for me to take the applicant through the application and let him confirm it?

CHAIRPERSON: Yes, I think also perhaps if the applicant can take a look at the application and whether he can confirm in the first instance that it is in fact his application and secondly that the contents contained therein are true and correct and then we can condone the non attestation of the application form once he's done that.

MS RAZAK: Thank you Chairperson, if I may just be given an opportunity. Mr Mabika, this is your application for amnesty. Would you please take a look at this document and confirm that the contents thereof were attested to by yourself and that you agree with everything contained therein?

MR MABIKA: Yes, this is my own handwriting. I confirm the contents of the statement.

MS RAZAK: Thank you Mr Mabika. May I continue with the application?


MS RAZAK: Thank you Chairperson.

EXAMINATION BY MS RAZAK: Mr Mabika, you are applying for amnesty for your participation in a robbery of Acme Dry cleaners, that took place in Kimberley on the 18th of January 1992, do you agree with that?

MR MABIKA: Yes, that is correct.

MS RAZAK: You, in your application, Mr Mabika, you say that you were at the time a member of a political organisation. What political organisation did you belong to?

MR MABIKA: I was an Azapo member.

MS RAZAK: Since when were you an Azapo member?

MR MABIKA: I joined Azapo in 1982.

MS RAZAK: That was ten years prior to this incident. Mr Mabika, please explain to me your involvement in this particular robbery or this operation, this incident that took place on the 18th of January.

MR MABIKA: The condition or situation in the country, led us to be involved in that robbery. In the Northern Cape in the township called Galeshewe ...(intervention)

CHAIRPERSON: Sorry, Mr Mabika, could you just mention the name of that township again, please?

MR MABIKA: Galeshewe township in Kimberley.

There was Comrade Shimi who was a member of a Trade Union. One day I phoned him, sorry he's the one who actually phoned me. He told me that things were bad. ANC people were attacking them and they had burned a few houses. As I was still listening to him, he put down the phone, but he put the phone down and I phoned me again and I tried to phone him and then a child answered the phone and I asked where Shimi was and then the child told me that the comrades were after him.

After that I phoned Harare, the Chief Commander of Azapo, Musibudi Mangena, who was a Chief Commander. I told him that we were dying inside the country, we wanted him to give us the go-ahead to defend ourselves as the black people fighting for the liberation of the black people, but there was another group of black people who were collaborating with the white people. He told us that he was going to try and get assistance somewhere else and he asked me to phone him again.

JUDGE DE JAGER: Ja, just a moment. You phoned who?

MR MABIKA: Musibudi Mangena who was a Chief Commander in Harare.

Just before I could get help, the following week Shimi came to Johannesburg and I asked him as to what was happening in Kimberley and then he related the story to me. I said we had to do something to protect ourselves and the organisation at large.

We had to check first whether we had resources, but we realised that Azapo was the only organisation that did not have any donors and we also didn't have money and we thought that what can actually help us, is to go and repossess from our oppressors, commit robberies and get money and buy weapons so that we would be able to neutralise ANC and fact the real enemy. We could even get the firearms in the police stations as those were some of our targets. We agreed upon that. We said if we go to Kimberley, we'll be able to get money there because crimes like armed robbery was not a common thing in Kimberley.

After some days, there were other young men who were supporters of our organisation and there was this other one whom I used to know very well and even Shimi knew him very well, that was Mr Vundla who was selling in the trains. I told him that firearms were not a problem, there was a certain building in Johannesburg. There's a man, Mr Mashaba, a man that we used to know, I got a Makarov from him for a price. he told me that there were so many firearms in Mozambique, if I can bring the money, I will get everything that I needed.

I talked to Jomo and I told him that the best thing for us to acquire firearms, we should go and visit Kimberley, Shimi in Kimberley. After a few days Shimi called telling me to come over. I left Johannesburg with Jomo and his brother Wisdom. We took a train and when we were in Klerksdorp, Shimi was there waiting for us in a car.

JUDGE DE JAGER: Can you go a bit slower please, so that we can write down?

MR MABIKA: Okay. Thank you.

JUDGE DE JAGER: You left Jo'burg with whom?


I left. It was myself, Rudolf Vundla and Wisdom Vundla. They were not the members and they were not even aware of what was happening.

CHAIRPERSON: So if they were not members and they did not know what was happening, why did you go with them then, Mr Mabika?


Rudolf was the person that I used to know very well and he supported our organisation, but he was so fond of the struggle, he would attend the Trade Union meetings with me. He had so much interest in the struggle. They only thought that we were visiting Shimi in Kimberley because that's what I told them. We met with Shimi in Klerksdorp. We left for Kimberley.

We went straight to Shimi's house, who told us that we were not going to spend a night in his house because he didn't want the people in the neighbourhood to see us there. He took us to a certain house where there were two ladies. There were two people, the other one was called Tomboy and Albert Sehere. When Shimi took us at Klerksdorp, he was with a certain person by the name of Ralph Marutle, who would be in his company when he was visiting our office in Johannesburg.

We spent four days at the Sehere house. Shimi told me that there was a dry cleaner in Kimberley. He got that information through a person who was the driver of this dry cleaner. There were other dry cleaners too, four of them, and they would collect that money and take it to this particular depot and he said that is the first target. I agreed with him, because I was in need of the firearms. The seven of us left, I think it was on a Saturday. I was armed with a Makarov.

When we got into this dry cleaner, driving in this car, when I got inside I saw a white person and I told them that it was a hold-up, they mustn't move and I stood at the door. Wisdom Vundla approached the lady who was screaming at the time and I thought that if she was continuing screaming, she would alert the police and then I tried to indicate to her that this was not a toy gun, that it was a real thing, but she continued screaming and I tried to scare her. When I was trying and she tried to grab the firearm and it fired by mistake and after that I told the others that we should leave the premises because our intention was not to injure anyone, but we just wanted to get the money and buy the weapons.

That's how we left the premises. When we got into our car, we discovered that Wisdom was shot in his hand, meaning the bullet penetrated through his hand to the lady and then we went to the township. I asked him why he couldn't hold the lady and try to stop her from screaming. Late during the night we were arrested. That's how our mission failed.

Everything that I did, I was doing it for the sake of getting money and buy the firearms. We had no alternative, because of the violence that was escalating in trains and the taxis. People were dying, to such an extent that I knew that I would die any time, therefore I had to get money and defend myself because if we would leave the situation as it was at the time, people were going to be in danger and perhaps I would be co-opted by the same system that was oppressing us, or I would die. Most of the people in those times, ended up working with the enemy, getting money by killing people, therefore if I didn't want to collaborate with the enemy, becoming an askari, therefore meaning I would be killed. If you can remember very well, during those times some of the things that were happening were horrible. By being a black person meant politics, oppression without a say, many of our brothers decided to leave for exile. People like me who were left inside our country trying to fight and I had told myself that I was going to fight until the last drop of my blood, rather than selling my own people, because as the Azapo people, our intention in this country was to liberate the black people, get our land, the land that was taken away from us.

CHAIRPERSON: Mr Mabika, could you take a look at page 44 of the documents? I just want - you know, this is the record from the courts, the trial and you'll see there were seven people who were accused persons, your name being the first one. Now who else went with you to the dry cleaner that day? Was it all of you, or not? All of those people listed there, or not? There's yourself, you've mentioned, there's Shimi, you've mentioned Wisdom, he's number seven and you've mentioned Rudolf, he's number eight, what about these other people? Ralph Marutle, Sonkie Sehere and Selo? Were they there with you?

MR MABIKA: Yes, all of us, the seven of us were involved. Shimi was our driver.

CHAIRPERSON: Yes. Thank you. Sorry Ms Razak.

MS RAZAK: Mr Mabika at the time that you got involved with this incident, were you employed?

MR MABIKA: Yes, I was employed.

MR RAZAK: Who were you employed with?

MR MABIKA: I was working for Black Allied Mining and Construction Workers Union.

MR RAZAK: To which organisation was this Union affiliated?

MR MABIKA: It was an Azapo affiliate.

MS RAZAK: And in the court, you pleaded not guilty to these crimes.

MR MABIKA: Yes, that is correct.

MS RAZAK: Can you tell me why you did this?

MR MABIKA: I was terrified because during those times, if I had mentioned in Court that what I did was politically motivated, I would be given the death sentence, that is why I decided to plead not guilty, because I knew what was going to happen.

MS RAZAK: But you did in fact, at the beginning of the proceedings, mention that you are a member of Azapo to the Court, is that not correct?

MR MABIKA: Yes, that is correct.

MS RAZAK: I refer to page 128 of the bundle and 129. This is not in relation to the charges that were put to you, but with regard to the whole question of legal representation and the need for pro deo counsel at that time, do you recall this?

MR MABIKA: Would you please repeat the question?

MS RAZAK: I beg your pardon. When Mr Mabika mentioned this in the Court, it was not in relation to the trial, but it was in the proceedings relating to his need for legal representation.

MR MABIKA: Yes, that is correct. During those times, a legal representative would be coming from the side of the Government. I told them that as an Azapo members, I did not want to be represented by the State, because the State was my enemy.

MS RAZAK: Mr Mabika, there are a few more questions I'd like to ask you. With regard to Shimi, the person you refer to as Shimi, he was not sentenced in these proceedings, is that correct?

MR MABIKA: Yes, that is correct. I can explain further. Shimi, we were arrested together, when we appeared in Court, as Accused Number One, I'm the one who told the Court that Shimi was not involved in the incident and he was not even present. Shimi didn't even see me in Kimberley, he had no knowledge that I was around in Kimberley, that's what I said. I was actually trying to defend him as my comrade and again I was trying to protect the car belonging to the organisation. I was successful in that and he was acquitted.

MS RAZAK: Thank you Mr Mabika. No further questions, Chairperson.


CHAIRPERSON: Thank you Ms Razak. Ms Coleridge, do you have any questions you'd like to put to the applicant?

MS COLERIDGE: Yes, thank you Chairperson.

CROSS-EXAMINATION BY MS COLERIDGE: You said you were an Azapo member, how long were you an Azapo member, Mr Mabika?

CHAIRPERSON: He said he joined in 1982.

MS COLERIDGE: Thank you Chairperson, I'm indebted to you. Who planned this whole operation?

MR MABIKA: It was myself and Shimi.

MS COLERIDGE: You were the person with the firearm on this day. Where did you get your firearm from?

MR MABIKA: A friend of mine, Mr Mashaba, was in Hillbrow. I bought the firearm from him in 1991, round about July/August. I bought the firearm for R600.

MS COLERIDGE: Because Accused Number Two states, on page 90 of the bundle, that he gave you the firearm, that is Hendrik, on page 90 of the bundle, just line 22 Chairperson, he states that - is says here that:

"Accused One gave Accused Two a firearm"

MR MABIKA: No, my intention to come here is to tell the truth. That firearm belonged to me.

CHAIRPERSON: Did Shimi, at the trial, say that he gave you the firearm, whether it was the truth or not, did he say that?

MR MABIKA: No, I do not remember him uttering such words. As I said, Shimi in this case, as Accused Number One when they asked me questions I told them that Shimi didn't even know that we were in Kimberley, he was immediately acquitted. I do not remember him telling anyone that, maybe he told the police about that during my absence. If he did that, that was a mistake, because the firearm belonged to me.

MS COLERIDGE: Can you just explain in detail to us what occurred at the dry cleaners, from the time that you entered the dry cleaners?

MR MABIKA: When I got into the dry cleaner, I shouted: "Don't move, hold-up" and I stood at the door, but inside the dry cleaners. The other people also got inside the dry cleaners, to the different directions. Wisdom went straight to the lady who was inside and she was busy screaming and I decided that the police would hear the noise and come and arrest us. I came closer to her because I wanted to scare her. She tried to wrestle with the firearm. By mistake, the firearm released a bullet and I told the comrades to get out of the premises and we went straight to the township.

CHAIRPERSON: Sorry, Ms Coleridge, before you proceed. Mr Mabika, this dry cleaner, was it like a shop where you walk off onto the pavement, or was it the actual place where the clothes are dry cleaned that's not open to the public? If you could just describe the place that you entered into at the dry cleaner.

MR MABIKA: According to the information that I got from Shimi, he got this information from the driver. There were other dry cleaners around in Kimberley. This driver would collect all the money from different dry cleaners and take it to this particular dry cleaner. We went there with the intention of getting the money from the other branches, the one that was kept in that one.

CHAIRPERSON: This place where the incident took place, where you went and pointed the gun and the shot went off, did you get into that room straight from the pavement? Was it where the public would go if they wanted to get their clothes clean, would they walk in there, or did you go in a back door where the machines were that were cleaning the clothes?

MR MABIKA: We got in through a public door, because as I just - I got there for the very first time on the right-hand side of the room, there was a counter and the lady was standing there, that is when I told her to hold up.

CHAIRPERSON: Besides the lady, were there any other people there, other than you and your companions who entered? Did you see anybody else in the dry cleaning place, other than the lady?

MR MABIKA: No, but when we were in Court, we heard that there were employees who saw us at the dry cleaning and they got in through the back door, they were inside, that's the information that I got from the Court that when we got into the dry clean, there were employees inside, but I only saw the lady.

CHAIRPERSON: Ms Coleridge.

MS COLERIDGE: I just want to sketch what Ms Spicer is saying, what occurred on that day, which is different to what you're saying. I want to refer to page 325 of the bundle, Chairperson, just as to what happened on that day. Just at the bottom of page 324:

The Court:

"You looked up, what did you see?

I looked straight into the gun.

Into a gun?"

She replies:


Mr van Rensburg goes further:

"And what happened then?

Then I started screaming and then the one came around the inside and started pushing me around.

Did anyone say anything?

He pushed me further in and then he told me to shut-up.

Yes he pushed you further in.

He had me on the ground with his hand over my mouth. (it's incorrect there, mouth).

With his what?

His hand over my mouth.


Yes, the one with the gun was about a metre in front of me.


And then I heard the gun go off. They ran away."

Ms Spicer states further that she at no stage wrestled with you in a sense as to take the gun away from you or any attempt like that. She said she was overwhelmed because you were seven people that entered the dry cleaners, you had the firearm, she was shoved and pushed around by people, one had a hand over her mouth and she says that the one person was holding her down and that's when you shot and that's why the bullet wound went straight through your co-applicant's hand, because he was holding her. What is your comment about that?

MR MABIKA: I disagree with her, first of all I said we were seven, but when we got into the dry cleaner, Shimi was in the car. Six of us got into the dry cleaner. When I got into the building, Wisdom Vundla is the one who approached the lady and he held here, but she continued screaming. As she was screaming, I left my position at the door. As she was standing there, I went close to here and Ralph Marutle was standing there where I was, next to the door and when this firearm fired, I got a fright and then I told the other guys to leave, but she was never held down.

CHAIRPERSON: That was what I was asking you. So are you saying that before the shot was fired, she was never on the ground, being held down on the ground, she was standing up?

MR MABIKA: Yes, that is correct.

CHAIRPERSON: Ms Coleridge.

MS COLERIDGE: One other question in relation to this, was it your intention to shoot and to injure Ms Spicer, or did this happen by complete accident?

MR MABIKA: Truly speaking it was a mistake. When we went there, we didn't have any intention of injuring anyone.

MR SIBANYONI: So why did you carry the gun along?

MR MABIKA: We just wanted to scare people in order to get the money and further the objectives of the organisation but that was a pure mistake and it was all because of her, because if she had listened to me when I said that she mustn't move, that couldn't have happened, because I said: "Please hold up, don't move", but she started screaming. If she didn't scream, I would never have come closer to her and then she also tried to hold the firearm, that's when the firearm released a bullet and if she wasn't screaming, I couldn't have been closer to her.

MR SIBANYONI: Didn't you foresee that if there was resistance from the people you intended to scare, you could use the firearm?

MR MABIKA: I had told myself that I was not going to shoot. We had planned this whole thing properly that we were not going to shed any blood, we had to make sure that no one sustains injuries. When we went there, the intention was not to shoot, but because of the mistake of what she did, we were forced.

JUDGE DE JAGER: Well, why didn't you turn round when she started screaming, if it wasn't your intention to frighten her or to shoot her?

MR MABIKA: We wanted the money to buy the weapons. Money is something that we wanted because we wanted to buy the firearms because we were in the battle.

CHAIRPERSON: Mr Mabika, when you went in to the place, did you have any idea of the amount of money that you may get, had you robbery been successful? What were you thinking of? Were you thinking of getting R600 or were you thinking of getting R40 or were you thinking of getting R40 000, what did you have in your mind?

MR MABIKA: The driver of the dry cleaner, told us about R70 000 to R100 000 because he was collecting the money from different branches. We were so sure that we were going to get money.

CHAIRPERSON: Ms Coleridge.

MS COLERIDGE: Thank you, Chairperson. And then just in relation to Themba taking the watch from Ms Spicer, as well. What happened? Did Themba take the watch? Was it your intention to rob Ms Spicer as well?

MR MABIKA: I am Themba.

CHAIRPERSON: Yes, that's the applicant himself.

MR MABIKA: I heard that information in Court about the watch. No one took any watch there and when I got that information, it never surprised me, because during those times of the old regime, it was a common thing, when they arrest you they would even accuse you of things that you did not do. Truly speaking, we did not take any watch in the building.

MS COLERIDGE: Because one of your co-accused also stated that you had taken the watch and Ms Spicer had stated that the watch was removed.

MR MABIKA: I know nothing about that and even my co-accused, I do not remember him uttering such words, telling the Court that I had taken a watch.

MS COLERIDGE: It's on page 92 of the bundle Chairperson, the third line from the bottom of the page.

CHAIRPERSON: Mr Mabika, when you and your companions went in there to commit the robbery, did you disguise yourselves at all? Did you wear balaclavas, or stockings over your head, copper hats, whatever, or did you just go in openly, undisguised?

MR MABIKA: We were not disguised.


MR MABIKA: We did not see it necessary for us to hide our faces.

CHAIRPERSON: Ms Coleridge.

MS COLERIDGE: Just one last aspect, Chairperson. I just want to find the portion where it states, page 95, that Accused Number Seven held Ms Spicer down, so in fact one of ...(intervention)

CHAIRPERSON: Accused Number Seven is Wisdom, is it? Wisdom Vundla?

MS COLERIDGE: Correct, Chairperson, he held Ms Spicer down.

CHAIRPERSON: And he's the same person who got shot through the hand?

MS COLERIDGE: The hand, that's correct. And what is your comment about that, saying that no-one held her down, Mabika?

MR MABIKA: I still maintain that she was never held down. She was standing straight up and even when the firearm released a bullet, she was still standing.

CHAIRPERSON: Sorry, Ms Coleridge. What time of the day did this take place, approximately, Mr Mabika, more or less?

MR MABIKA: I cannot be so certain, but it was early in the morning, perhaps between Eight and Nine.

MS COLERIDGE: Did you report this incident to your Commander at Azapo?

MR MABIKA: No. On the very same day I got arrested, I never got a chance to tell my Commander.

CHAIRPERSON: Do you know how it came about that you were arrested so quickly?

MR MABIKA: We spent the whole day in the township. Late we drove around, but Wisdom was left behind with Rudolf and I was driving the other people from Kimberley and then we came across a road block and I was found with the firearm and when I got to the police station, I saw my other co-accused, Ralph Marutle and Shimi, they were already arrested. I cannot remember if Albert was there, but I remember Tomboy was arrested later and Rudolf, together with Wisdom.

MS COLERIDGE: At Court you asked the Judge that you wanted the assistance from the Azapo in relation to your legal assistance and so forth, did you get any assistance eventually from the organisation?

MR MABIKA: I never got assistance from the organisation. I told them that I was going to represent myself. I was not prepared to get a legal representative from the State, because the State was my enemy and the case was postponed and when I was attending the trial, I did not get the opportunity to communicate with Azapo and Azapo was never informed by myself, I only talked to Mr Mangena, therefore I had to report back to him about the incident, but even with him, I couldn't get the opportunity to communicate.

CHAIRPERSON: Sorry, Mr Mabika, you refer to Mr Mangena as your Commander, usually the term Commander is used in relation to military or para military organisations, could you just explain? Why did you call him your Commander? Was he a military man, or what?

MR MABIKA: Yes, he was in charge of the Azanian forces in Harare. I called him and I asked for permission to fight the ANC because we were fighting the whites this other side and even the ANC was fighting us together with the same group of whites. He told me to take a post, he was going to talk to the Executive to help and he said I had to phone him back, but I couldn't do that because the level of violence was escalating in trains and taxis, therefore I decided to take an initiative as a freedom fighter, I had to do something to defend myself and the organisation at large.

JUDGE DE JAGER: But why couldn't you phone him back? It would have taken you five minutes.

MR MABIKA: The situation prevailing at the time, I couldn't phone him back, as he had told me to wait, I couldn't wait until I die. As a freedom fighter, I saw it necessary for me to take an initiative, rather than waiting for him. I couldn't do it and fold my hands and wait for my death, because we were dying in the country, because I had two options, I had to die or I had to fight.

CHAIRPERSON: Mr Mabika, when you refer to yourself as a freedom fighter, did you belong to any unit, had you undergone any military training?

MR MABIKA: No, but as the people who were inside the country, we used to refer to ourselves as soldiers when we were attending the rallies and toy-toying. By being a freedom fighter, I didn't necessarily mean that I have to go to the bush and get military training, I was fighting inside the country.

JUDGE DE JAGER: You were staying in Johannesburg at that time?

MR MABIKA: Yes, that is correct.

JUDGE DE JAGER: Did the ANC kill Azapo people in Johannesburg?

MR MABIKA: Yes, we also had problems because as I said, the situation was getting worse. When the houses were burned down in Kimberley, we phoned Comrade Mabasa, who got a call ...(intervention)

JUDGE DE JAGER: No, I'm talking about Johannesburg. Please let's finish Johannesburg. Did they kill any Azapo people in Johannesburg where you were staying?



MR MABIKA: The person that I know was Mr Lingane, who was residing at Moletsane, whose body was burned down.

JUDGE DE JAGER: Where's Moletsane?

MR MABIKA: In Soweto.

JUDGE DE JAGER: Thank you.

CHAIRPERSON: Ms Coleridge.

MS COLERIDGE: Did you attend any meetings, any Azapo meetings?


MS COLERIDGE: How often did you participate in any activities

MR MABIKA: Occasions like June 16, September 12th, Steve Biko's occasions and I would even attend the conferences, but most especially I was involved in the field mobilising the workers. If I wasn't with the Unions, I would be attending the Azapo activities.

MS COLERIDGE: Thank you, Chairperson, I have no further questions.


CHAIRPERSON: Did you have any re-examination Ms Razak?

MS RAZAK: Just one aspect please, Chairperson.

RE-EXAMINATION BY MS RAZAK: Mr Mabika, when you shot at Ms Spicer in the dry cleaners, was she standing up or was she lying down?

MR MABIKA: She was standing up.

MS RAZAK: Where, in relation to you, was she standing?

MR MABIKA: She was standing next to the counter and when she screamed, I moved from the door, I went closer to her and Wisdom was holding her, trying to stop her from screaming and then I came closer to her and then she tried to hold the gun and the shot was fired. I think it was a distance of two metres.

JUDGE DE JAGER: Now how could she hold the firearm if she was two metres away from the firearm?

MR MABIKA: I think I was in the distance of one or two metres because she was actually trying to hold the firearm and the shot was fired.

CHAIRPERSON: So what you're saying, she didn't actually get hold of you, she was stretching towards you?

MR MABIKA: No, she tried to touch the firearm, but then I was trying to move backwards and then the shot was fired.

CHAIRPERSON: Are you saying the shot was fired as you were moving backwards? Because two metres, if you take a look here Mr Mabika, two metres would be from about the end of the table where Judge de Jager is to about where I'm sitting.

MR MABIKA: I am not certain about two metres, it might happen that it was one metre, not two metres, because I was very close. I cannot say for sure if it was two metres, but I was very close to her.

MS RAZAK: Ms Spicer was hysterical throughout this entire incident, is that correct?

MR MABIKA: She was screaming.

MS RAZAK: Were you also nervous?

MR MABIKA: I just wanted her to stop screaming, to stop making noise, but when the shot was fired, I also got a scare and I decided to tell my people to leave the premises.

MS RAZAK: When did you find out that your co-accused was shot in the hand?

MR MABIKA: That is when we got into the car, when we got into the car he stood next to the car and told me that he was shot at and we went to Shimi's house. At Shimi's house, tried to dress up the wound.

MS RAZAK: Thank you, no further questions, Chairperson.


CHAIRPERSON: Thank you. Mr Sibanyoni, do you have any questions you would like to put to the applicant?

MR SIBANYONI: Yes, thank you Mr Chairperson. You mentioned Lingane who was residing at Moletsane, you said his body was burned, did Lingane hold any position in Azapo?

MR MABIKA: No, he was a family man, who did not hold any position, but his family were members. I remember because there were death threats from the ANC. We were guarding his premises and I remember at some stage we took him and all his belongings to different places in the township and we took him to Johannesburg Hostel and he spent a short while there and then he went back to his house. The ANC people came during the night and they killed him and they burned him.

MR SIBANYONI: Was he personally a member of Azapo?

MR MABIKA: His children were Azapo members. He was more like a supporter.

MR SIBANYONI: Do you know why the ANC would have killed him?

MR MABIKA: We took, as I said we took him to town because they wanted to attack the house, we decided to take him to town, so that he could be safe.

MR SIBANYONI: But for what reason? Why should they, why did they want to?

MR MABIKA: Just because he was Azapo, he was referred to as an Azapo member.

MR SIBANYONI: Did the ANC ever fight Azapo?


MR SIBANYONI: In what places? At what places?

MR MABIKA: Mostly here in Soweto, Burgersdal, Kroonstad, even in Kimberley. Even myself in 1986 in Rustenburg, I had a narrow escape. They had me, the ANC people, they wanted to stab me because they said I was a sellout and I ran to the township.

MR SIBANYONI: You also referred to a group of people who were assisted by whites in fighting Azapo, who are those black people you are referring to?

MR MABIKA: Azapo in this country was the only organisation of black people who were concerned with fighting for the liberation of a black person. ANC was claiming to be fighting for the black people but they were collaborating with the whites and ANC would in turn fight the Azapo organisation and it was a confusing state because during the nineties there was third force involved and the askaris, therefore the very same ANC would turn around with the whites, instead of fighting for the black liberation, they would fight the ANC members. Azapo was an organisation with black people only, there was no white.

MR SIBANYONI: Lastly, did Ms Spicer ever get hold of the firearm? Did she touch the gun when she was trying to wrestle it from you?

MR MABIKA: I cannot say for sure because I was also scared, but I cannot say whether she touched the firearm or not.

MR SIBANYONI: Thank you Mr Chairperson.

CHAIRPERSON: Thank you. Judge de Jager, do you have any questions you'd like to put?

JUDGE DE JAGER: Who travelled with you from Johannesburg?

MR MABIKA: It was myself, Rudolf Vundla and Wisdom Vundla. When we got to Klerksdorp we found Shimi and Ralph waiting for us in a car.

JUDGE DE JAGER: Right and Rudolf and Wisdom, they were not members of Azapo?

MR MABIKA: Yes, that is correct, they were not members. Rudolf was also not a member, he was just a mere supporter, as I explained initially. He was so fond of the struggle, he would even attend the Union meetings, but he was not a member.

JUDGE DE JAGER: So he attended Union meetings, but not Azapo meetings, is that correct?

MR MABIKA: Yes, that is correct, but he supported Azapo.

JUDGE DE JAGER: Ja. Then you met two people in Klerksdorp, Shimi and Ralph.

MR MABIKA: Yes, Shimi and Ralph.

JUDGE DE JAGER: Were they members of Azapo?

MR MABIKA: Yes, Shimi was a member of Azapo.


MR MABIKA: No, he wasn't.

JUDGE DE JAGER: And in Kimberley you met?

MR MABIKA: We met with Albert Sehere and his brother, Tomboy.

JUDGE DE JAGER: Right. Were they members of Azapo?

MR MABIKA: No, they were not Azapo members.

CHAIRPERSON: Sorry. These people Albert and Tomboy, I'm just looking at the list of the persons who stood trial on page 44, we've dealt with yourself, we've dealt with Shimi, we've dealt with Ralph. Albert, is he the person, this Sonkie, Sonkie Albert Simon?


CHAIRPERSON: You say he's not a member and what about Selo Petrus Sehere?

MR MABIKA: He was also not a member.

CHAIRPERSON: And what - okay, so who's Tomboy? Is he there in that list? Is he Selo?

MR MABIKA: Tomboy is Petrus.

CHAIRPERSON: Ja. So the members, just to make sure here, of Azapo at that time were yourself and Shimi, that's all?


CHAIRPERSON: And the others you say were either sympathisers or supporters but not members?


JUDGE DE JAGER: But did you tell him you want to buy weapons?

MR MABIKA: The person that I told was Rudolf because he was also looking for a firearm and I told him that I have a way of acquiring the firearms only if we had money. He was also part of the planning.

JUDGE DE JAGER: Yes. Did you tell them that you want to buy firearms so that you could shoot the ANC?

MR MABIKA: All these people were not aware, the only person who knew about this whole issue was myself, Shimi and Rudolf, the rest of the people didn't know a thing about the mission.

CHAIRPERSON: Sorry, if I could just intervene. So when you went to the dry cleaner and entered the premises there, the other people, for instance Albert and Petrus and Wisdom, as far as they were concerned, they were involving themselves in a straight-forward robbery? What did they think you were doing in the dry cleaner?

MR MABIKA: I cannot say on their behalf, I can only talk about myself because of the situation that I was in, I had to try by all means to get money, that's why I had to part with anyone, I had to work with anyone to get the money.

CHAIRPERSON: But what I don't understand, Mabika, if you could just enlighten me is, you go in there, there's seven people. As far as you are concerned, you're going there to get money by violent means. Of the seven, there's only yourself, Shimi and Rudolf who know why you're going there, the other four have got no knowledge at all that you're going to rob, this is what you're saying. Now why take those people? Didn't you think they would panic and start screaming and running around and let you down? How can you have a smoothly planned operation with people who've got no idea that they're involved in it?

MR MABIKA: The situation that we were facing was very tense and I was forced to try by all means to take this mission and we planned with Shimi and when I got to Kimberley with Shimi, Shimi talked to the Sehere brothers and even the driver of the dry cleaner was a close friend of the Sehere brothers. Even the Sehere brothers didn't have enough information as to why I was in Kimberley, it was only Shimi who knew what was happening. They also needed the money.

CHAIRPERSON: So what you say,the Sehere brothers needed the money?

MR MABIKA: Yes, because we had agreed upon going to rob the dry cleaner. They knew very well that we were going to get the money.

CHAIRPERSON: Okay, no that was where I was confused, I was under the impression they had no idea why you were going at all, not even to rob. So they knew that, as far as they were concerned, it was a straight-forward robbery and they were going to get some money out of it? Okay.

JUDGE DE JAGER: Was there an agreement that you would share the money with them?


JUDGE DE JAGER: On what basis would you share, each one getting one seventh, or would you get more or some people more and others less?

MR MABIKA: I was going to get my money and each and every person was going to get his own share.

CHAIRPERSON: So would it be equal shares? Seven people, if you get R70 000, R10 000 each?

MR MABIKA: I was the person who was going to get a bigger share because of the firearms. I was going to get a share for two people, the one for the firearm and the one that I was going to use.

CHAIRPERSON: So you would divide the money by eight, you would get two and the others would each get an eighth.


JUDGE DE JAGER: And you say the watch was never stolen? You're sure about that?

MR MABIKA: Yes, I am certain about that.

JUDGE DE JAGER: Vundla never took the watch, Wisdom?

MR MABIKA: Vundla was the one who was holding the lady. i never saw the watch, I only heard about the watch in Court.

JUDGE DE JAGER: So if the lady testified in Court that her watch was taken or if she'd say that today here, she would be lying?

MR MABIKA: I cannot say, I cannot talk on behalf of Wisdom, all I know is that I was charged for robbery, attempted murder and firearm, I know nothing about the watch. As I have mentioned earlier on that in those days it was a common thing that when you are arrested, they would use anything to implicate you. Many people died because of crimes that they did not commit and the fabrications that were done by the police and even when I heard this in Court, I was not surprised because I just thought it was one of those things.

JUDGE DE JAGER: So I finally ask you, if Ms Spicer would today tell us that you people robbed her of her watch, would she be lying? I'm not talking about the police now.

MR MABIKA: If she says that I took her watch, that is not true. Even in Court I do not remember that she mentioned that I took her watch. If she mentions that today, then ...

JUDGE DE JAGER: No, it was alleged that, was it Rudolf - Vundla took the watch. Did he take the watch or not?

MR MABIKA: No, I never saw the watch at all.

MS COLERIDGE: Chairperson, just for the record, it was Themba, that is the applicant. It was alleged that the applicant had taken her watch.

JUDGE DE JAGER: They said you took the watch. Sorry, it's not Rudolf, it was you, they alleged you took the watch.

MR MABIKA: As I said initially, that by coming to this Commission, the charges that I'm facing is the armed robbery and attempted murder and firearm, together with ammunition. I know nothing about the watch and I did indicate that it was common thing that charges - the way that the Government was using that, when we got arrested they would tell all kinds of lies. This is one of those things, it was a common thing, I know nothing about the watch. My aim to go there was not to get the watch, I wanted the money but when the shot was fired, we left the premises immediately.

CHAIRPERSON: Sorry, Mr Sibanyoni indicated he wants to ask a further question.

MR SIBANYONI: Indeed, sorry Mr Chairperson. Mr Mabika, are you familiar with the term amaZimzim?


MR SIBANYONI: That term is used in relation to which organisation or members of which organisation?

MR MABIKA: Azapo was referred to as amaZimzim and we used to call ANC as the ...(indistinct) and they would call us amaZimzim and amaVarara.

MR SIBANYONI: Those two terms, amaZimzim and amaVarara, were they said even in good faith or were they degrading terms?

MR MABIKA: They were not used in good spirits, these terms came about in 1985. The ANC, when they started ...(indistinct) people, we called them amaVarara and they called us amaZimzim, because at some stage Azapo attacked ANC members, but I was never involved, that was from 1985.

MR SIBANYONI: So you are saying there was enmity between ANC and Azapo members?


MR SIBANYONI: Thank you, Mr Chairperson.


JUDGE DE JAGER: Who was your leader in Johannesburg, the Azapo leader or Commander, whatever you may call him?

MR MABIKA: We did not have a Commander, there was an ...(indistinct). We had Comrade Liebe Mabaso.

JUDGE DE JAGER: Did you inform him about this mission of yours?

MR MABIKA: No, I never told him

JUDGE DE JAGER: Did you belong to an Azapo branch, or unit?

MR MABIKA: I was in the Azapo branch.

JUDGE DE JAGER: Who was your Chairman?

MR MABIKA: I cannot remember him.

JUDGE DE JAGER: Can you remember the secretary?


JUDGE DE JAGER: Who was he?

MR MABIKA: It was Mr Mabaso.

JUDGE DE JAGER: And you've already told us that you didn't inform him of this mission of yours.

MR MABIKA: Yes. Comrade Mangena told me that he was going to talk to Liebe Mabaso and Mabaso is going to help me, but if he fails, I had to phone him back, but I couldn't do that because of the situation.

CHAIRPERSON: Did you at any stage go to Mr Mabaso and say: "Has Mr Mangena got hold of you?" Did you make inquiries from Mabaso?

MR MABIKA: No, when I got arrested, I did not get a chance to meet with him until I was arrested.

CHAIRPERSON: Ms Razak, do you have any questions arising out of questions that have been put by members of the Panel?

MS RAZAK: Thank you Chairperson.

FURTHER RE-EXAMINATIOn BY MS RAZAK: Mr Mabika, what were you going to do with your share of the money?

MR MABIKA: Myself and Comrade Shimi, we were going to Mr Mashaba to buy the weapons because we had told ourselves that we were going to commit only one robbery and buy the weapons and attack the Government, more especially the police station and the first target was Madigane police station, that was my first target, therefore we knew that we were going to get firearms in that police station.

MS RAZAK: Why did you decide to take such drastic action to get money for weapons, Mr Mabika? You didn't, as you admit, consult any of your superiors in the Azapo organisation.

MR MABIKA: The situation that we were facing was very difficult. As a freedom fighter, it's something that I had to do to make sure that I protect myself and my organisation, therefore we had to get the money to buy the firearms, because if I was failing, I was going to die.

MS RAZAK: Thank you. No further questions.


CHAIRPERSON: Ms Coleridge, do you have any questions arising?

MS COLERIDGE: No questions, thank you Chairperson.

CHAIRPERSON: Mr Mabika, that concludes your evidence, thank you.


CHAIRPERSON: Ms Razak do you have any further witnesses to call?

MS RAZAK: No Chairperson that will be the sum total of the case.

CHAIRPERSON: Thank you. Ms Coleridge?

MS COLERIDGE: Chairperson, that is the case for the victims. Ms Spicer does not wish to testify.

CHAIRPERSON: Yes, thank you. That then concludes the evidence in this matter. Ms Razak, do you have any submission you would like to make?

MS RAZAK IN ARGUMENT: Chairperson, save to say that I'll try to keep this as short as possible. This particular inquiry, as the Honourable Committee Members are all aware, is not about the guilt or innocence of the applicant. It's not about the correctness of what was reflected in the Court record, but it's simply an exercise to ascertain the truth of the events that occurred on that day and more importantly the motive and objective with which these acts were perpetrated. The other accused, for some reason or the other, have not applied for amnesty. I'm not sure what their status is.

CHAIRPERSON: We don't hold that against anybody because certain people didn't apply for amnesty because they were unaware of it. Certain people didn't apply for amnesty because they weren't in agreement with the process, so we're not going to draw any conclusions from the fact that other people haven't applied. We certainly won't hold that against anybody.

MS RAZAK: Thank you, I'm indebted to you Chairperson, for that information. And given the circumstances as set out and the evidence given today, there are certain things that emerge from here. One of them that emerges quite clearly is the conviction of the applicant to the policies of Azapo. There might be some confusion as to whether there were instructions given, or in fact that there were no instructions given and he admitted to this. He did not pretend that there were instructions given, he did not give a false version about his involvement in it, he quite openly set out his policy views, his beliefs at the time and the way he perceived his situation to be at that time. It's obvious that there was some level of internecine violence that was taking place, the exact degree of this, there is no evidence of, but all we have to do is go to relevant news reports at the time to confirm that there was a very torrid situation, to say the least. We had, on the one side the internecine violence and on the other side, we had incidents of violence against the State. In this political climate, the important thing to consider here is, what was the state of mind of the applicant at that time when he decided to take on these dastardly acts, which he firmly believed, was in the course of the struggle. He believed himself to be in a war, he believed himself to need ammunition to defend his life, these were his perceptions. The right and wrong of his perceptions is not what is in question, but simply that these perceptions existed and that he was in fact a fully fledged member of Azapo for ten years prior to the incident. There has been testimony that he constantly reiterated that he considered this a situation of emergency and he wanted desperately to acquire funds to acquire the ammunition in Mozambique. He obviously did not consult leadership at a local level, but there is evidence that he did consult leadership at an international level, namely Mr Mangena from Harare and the fact that he did not pursue this is more indicative of his impatience and his frustration with the situation, Chairperson, and it points to and it confirms that his motives and objectives herein, whether they were morally right or wrong, were most decidedly politically motivated and it is in the light of this that I appeal to the Committee to consider his application favourably.

There are in addition inconsistencies that have come out. There are also very strong convictions which have been expressed and if one has regard to the criteria in the Promotion of National Unity and Reconciliation Act, which must be regarded when making decisions of this sort, the motive and the context in which this offence was committed, was obviously within a political framework, and if, to a large extent, this existed as a paranoia with regard to the applicant, it was nonetheless his true perception at the time.

At no stage is there an indication that he wanted to do this for personal gain. He was employed. He was employed in fact with a Union which was an affiliate of Azapo. If one has a recollection of politics during the early nineties and the late eighties, there was very little distinction between Union matters and Union organisation matters and political matters, they were pretty much intertwined at the time and even in his discussions of people having been present at Union meetings, to him and to many people at that time, it would amount to one and the same thing because politics and unionism was pretty much interlinked.

He was not only employed with them, but he was also a member of them for a number of years.

The objectives, he has clearly set out, were that he wanted to acquire funds for ammunition, we need not reiterate this.

Yes certainly, the nature of the offence and the acts that took place here, are not by any stretch of the imagination pleasant, they are not to be looked upon favourably, because there are people, there are human lives at stake, but one has to take into account that Azapo particularly and that the mindset and the political ethos that was perpetuated by Azapo and it's affiliates, were pretty much a black consciousness movement that was concerned primarily with the preservation of black people, even if it was at the expense of white people, or at the expense of members of the public, that this was pretty much the attitude that was prevailing at the time, be it right or wrong and in the light of all the aforesaid evidence and the argument that I've afforded, I pretty much appeal that the applicant's application be considered in a favourable light and that he be granted amnesty. Thank you.

CHAIRPERSON: Thank you Ms Razak. Ms Coleridge, do you wish to make any submissions?

MS COLERIDGE: Yes, thank you Chairperson.

MS COLERIDGE IN ARGUMENT: I just want to touch on the issues of the inconsistencies in relation to the applicant's version and in relation to the facts and what the victim has stated and the Court Judgment. Firstly the issue of the gun, the firearm. In the Court Judgment it was stated that Shimi acknowledged the fact that he had actually presented the applicant with a firearm, where, under the evidence, under cross-examination the applicant stated that he himself, actually it was his firearm and he went out to purchase it himself, Chairperson, so there's that one consistency that does exist.

The issue of Ms Spicer trying to actually take the gun and trying to take the gun away from him, is inconsistent to what the victim is stating, Chairperson. She states that she was overwhelmed by six males, basically, who pinned her down and she admits that she did scream and shout like any normal person would do. She states that she never tried to reach out for the gun.

JUDGE DE JAGER: Ms Coleridge, but she didn't give evidence at this hearing. They didn't have the opportunity to cross-examine her and test her evidence.

MS COLERIDGE: Chairperson, she states in her Court Judgment and she also to myself, informed me that she ...(intervention)

JUDGE DE JAGER: Ja, well she - you can't give that evidence.

MS COLERIDGE: I take the point.

CHAIRPERSON: But what about the position, just for your views, the fact that Wisdom got shot through the hand? That sort of doesn't seem to indicate that the shot was aimed particularly, because otherwise he wouldn't aim to shoot your companion's hand.

MS COLERIDGE: Yes, the victim's version is, Chairperson, that they pushed her down on the ground and she was just coming up and that's when, because they were holding her, Vundla was holding her and that is when he shot at her and it so happened that it went through Accused Number Seven's hand, because they were in that position.

Chairperson, I did ask her, Ms Spicer, whether she'd like to testify.

CHAIRPERSON: Yes. No, we understand, certainly and respect her decision not to testify and it's not very common that we in fact do have victims who have gone through a traumatic experience like that, who wish to testify, so we understand that Ms Spicer, completely.

MS COLERIDGE: Chairperson, in relation to the applicant. It's not in dispute that he belonged to the Azapo and to the Union, Chairperson, the only fact, that is our submission is that the applicant surrounded himself with criminals. According to him it was just himself and Shimi belonging to Azapo organisation and the other persons were really into it for personal gain.

CHAIRPERSON: And then, then thereby watered down the end profit.

MS COLERIDGE; The end profit, exactly Chairperson.

CHAIRPERSON: Dividing by eight instead of by two.

MS COLERIDGE: By two, correct and it is our submission Chairperson that this was a basic criminal activity on the part of the applicant, Chairperson.

It is our submission, Chairperson, that the applicant's application for amnesty must be refused, Chairperson. Thank you.

CHAIRPERSON: Ms Razak, any reply?

MS RAZAK IN REPLY: Thank you Chairperson. In relation to the allegation or the submission that the applicant surrounded himself with criminals, I think it became evident that certainly the other people were not aware, he did not try to hide this fact, he said that it appeared in the context to be more of an inducement for their participation. He was obviously nervous, he had never done something like this before. There was only one weapon and they wanted this operation or this robbery to be successful for whatever purposes for each of the individual members, the fact that they'd coerced, or they'd - I beg your pardon co-opted the assistance, so to speak, of criminals has no bearing on the fact that the applicant and Shimi, for example who is not here to give testimony, but certainly the applicant was interested in one thing and one thing only and that is that he wanted to get money. He obviously thought that there would be safety in numbers, therefore six or seven of them went and the operation itself, the way it was carried out was obviously amateurish, everything about it showed that there was no premeditated kind of an efficient planning by criminals. The issue here is what is the applicant's involvement in this and he was prepared to share out this money with the other criminals, but certainly his share of the money and he claimed Shimi's share of the money, was going to go for ... (intervention)

JUDGE DE JAGER: But if he really wanted money for the organisation, why wouldn't he take six Azapo members and all the money would go to Azapo?

MS RAZAK: Yes, I understand your difficulty with this Judge. It just appears to me that there was not a very good communication link between the applicant and the rest of the Azapo members. He obviously had to go and find assistance from Harare which was not forthcoming. He then took the only Azapo member that he knew.

JUDGE DE JAGER: Was that then a frolic of his own? He didn't consider the other Azapo members, he didn't ask his superiors, he didn't bother to make another phone call?

MS RAZAK: Agreed, Judge, that his decision was certainly hasty, it was not well thought out, it was not well executed either and he didn't get the requisite authority from his superiors. In fact he averted that, because his insistence is that he could not wait for that kind of authority, he could not wait for that whole process to complete itself, because had he done so, he believed he would be wasting time.

JUDGE DE JAGER: He's in Johannesburg, he's got a Chairman, he's got a secretary there, what time would that involve, to go to them and ask: "Listen, I'm going to do this, would this meet with your approval?"

MS RAZAK: It appears that his lack of doing this was that he was not going to get consent forthcoming and my point is that his particular perception was that it needed urgent action and this may not necessarily have concurred with the opinion of his superiors.

JUDGE DE JAGER: But suppose he would have asked and they would have said no, would that then be a politically motivated, would he qualify for amnesty if he's acted against his organisation's wishes?

MS RAZAK: With all due respect, that is a hypothetical scenario, that has not been put to the applicant and it is not the case that has to be considered, but if we take the hypothetical scenario, had he been refused, had he actually been refused permission, it might have shed a different light on it, but in the circumstances ...(intervention)

JUDGE DE JAGER: The trouble is, you argued it, I didn't argue it, you put it to me.

MS RAZAK: I understand that, but under the circumstances there was somebody who was aware of this operation, Mr Mangena, and he neither gave confirmation, nor did he give resistance to the idea.

CHAIRPERSON: He wasn't aware of the Acme Dry Cleaning, of an operation to ...

MS RAZAK: No he was aware that the applicant wanted to ...


MS RAZAK: Yes, to get himself armed and to proceed with an operation of this type.

CHAIRPERSON: Yes, but he wasn't aware of - yes of that type, not of that particular operation.

MS RAZAK: Yes, not of that particular operation. But given that there was no dissent forthcoming, that even Mr Mangena, being aware that this kind of an operation was in the forefront or was being planned, there was no resistance from him, there was no: "Don't go ahead and do that, are you crazy?" This indicates that these kinds of operations, if you want to call them, be they horrid, were part of the policy of the organisation at that time, the they certainly were - it was not incommensurate with what was taking place at a broader level.

CHAIRPERSON: Thank you Ms Razak. That then concludes this hearing. Like in the other matters, we shall be handing down a written decision, which is our policy, certainly my policy, which we shall endeavour to do as soon as possible. Ms Razak thank you very much for your co-operation in this matter, Ms Coleridge. Mr Mabika, that's the end, as you hear, of your hearing and we'll hand down the - we'll reserve our decision to be handed down in the near future.

Before we adjourn, I'd just like to thank everybody who made these hearings here possible. I'd like to thank the

interpreters who have a very difficult task trying to keep up with all the talking that's going on all week. Thank you very much indeed Ms Coleridge for your assistance, the sound technicians, the TV person, the caterers who looked after us so well, Jo, the liaison officer, my secretary Molly, everybody concerned, thank you very much and also the owners of this very convenient nice venue, thank you very much. We'll now adjourn. That's the end of our roll. Thank you.