DAY: 1

--------------------------------------------------------------------------CHAIRPERSON: Good afternoon. For the purposes of the record, I am Judge Pillay, I'm going to ask my two colleagues to announce themselves for the purposes of the record and similarly all the representatives to do the same.

MR MALAN: Wynand Malan, Committee Member and Commissioner of the TRC.

ADV SIGODI: Advocate Sigodi, I'm a Member of the Amnesty Committee.

ADV STEENKAMP: Honourable Chairman, I'm Andre Steenkamp, I'll be the Evidence Leader in this matter. Thank you.

MR RICHARD: Tony Richard, I represent the witness, Ernest Ramatolo.

MR NORTIER: I am Adv Nortier from the Cape Town Bar, appearing for Mr Coetzee on instructions of Mr Cooke.

MS VAN DER WALT: I'm Louisa van der Walt, I'm appearing on behalf of Mr H J Prinsloo, the third applicant.

MR PRINSLOO: Honourable Chairperson, I'm H J Prinsloo, appearing on behalf of Mr de Bruin, one of the applicants.

MS CAMBANIS: Crystal Cambanis, appearing on behalf of the Hani family.

CHAIRPERSON: Ms van der Walt, is there any clash between Mr Prinsloo and Mr de Bruin?

MS VAN DER WALT: None, except that Mr de Bruin's evidence will be about a certain aspect during which Mr Prinsloo was not present. It is the concluding section of his application, when Mr Ramatolo returned from Lesotho to South Africa.

CHAIRPERSON: Is there any clash between your client and Mr Coetzee?

MS VAN DER WALT: No, there is none. The instruction came from Head Office, but there are no problems, we have made certain of that.

CHAIRPERSON: You may begin.

MR PRINSLOO: (sworn states)

CHAIRPERSON: Thank you, you may be seated.

EXAMINATION BY MS VAN DER WALT: Mr Prinsloo, your amnesty application is in the bundle before the Honourable Committee and it is embodied in the formal application from page 41 to 43. The incident for which you have applied appears on page 44 up to page 47 and then the political motivation is from page 48 to 54, is that correct?

MR PRINSLOO: Yes, that is correct, Chairperson.

MS VAN DER WALT: If we could take you directly to the incident, which is on page 44, the first paragraph, there you state that you were involved with the tracing of MK terrorists and the propaganda onslaught by the ANC within the Republic at that stage. Could you tell the Honourable Committee precisely what you were investigating and how this affected Mr Chris Hani.


"Chairperson, before 1980, just after the unrest of 1976, firstly there was a tremendous flow of ANC members to Lesotho, from South Africa or other neighbouring States, where they sought political asylum. At that stage I was stationed in Bloemfontein and by nature of the situation I possessed information which I obtained from informers and I also had sight of intelligence documents and reports from other members of the intelligence community. That would be National Intelligence as well as Military Intelligence.

I was also busy investigating the large-scale propaganda campaign which had been launched from Lesotho into the RSA, by means of pamphlets which were distributed through the postal system, as well as documents which were spread by hand in residential areas in the Western Cape, the Eastern Cape and the Free State. The culmination of my investigation indicated that Martin Thembesile Hani, also known as Chris Hani, was the main person of the ANC/MK structure in Lesotho. He was a very high profile persons. He was also a member of the Mombaris group. He was a highly trained person.

The investigation regarding Mr Hani and his activities as well as the propaganda campaign which was launched, was conducted by me on the basis of information at my disposal and I determined that he established structures in Lesotho which entailed the following: That some of the refugees, the political refugees who had defected to Lesotho, were selected by him for MK training and military training abroad. He had also established structures for the reception of militarily trained members of MK who had returned to Lesotho and who were planning on infiltrating from Lesotho to the RSA, as well as for the purposes of weaponry which was coming into Lesotho.

Let me just explain that everything took place by aeroplane. Those were the structures that he had in place. And then also the infiltration of these trained members to the RSA and the creation of safe-houses for MK members in the RSA.

In the process a lady friend, so to speak, of Mr Hani, Dipho Sekemane - I know that she is today as Mrs Hani, she was arrested by other members of the Security Branch and I also interrogated her in Bloemfontein regarding the propaganda campaign.

At that stage I was 90% convinced that the addresses on the postal items were hand-written addresses and that this was the handwriting of Mr Hani."

CHAIRPERSON: ...(inaudible)

MR PRINSLOO: Chairperson, I had examples of his handwriting and there was a hand-writing expert at the South African Criminal Bureau and most of the items were addressed by the same person by hand and the hand-writing expert was convinced that this was indeed the handwriting of Mr Chris Hani. During the interrogation of Dipho Sekemane, I displayed some of the items to her and she confirmed that this was indeed the handwriting of Chris Hani and that she was aware of the items which were sent.

MS VAN DER WALT: Mr Prinsloo, then I would like to take you further in the same paragraph, the first paragraph of your application, you further state that during this period when you conducted the investigation, you received an order from the Divisional Commander, Brig Eben Coetzee. Could you elaborate regarding the particulars of the order that you received. Mr Eben Coetzee is the applicant before the Committee today, is that correct?

MR PRINSLOO: That is correct.

"Chairperson, at an advanced stage of my investigation, Lieut Col Coetzee who was the Divisional Commander of the Security Branch in the Free State, in Bloemfontein, called me to his office and he then informed me that Head Office had made a request to him that a plan should be made regarding Chris Hani. In other words, that he was to be eliminated."

CHAIRPERSON: Is that how you understood the message?


CHAIRPERSON: Then why didn't he simply say "Kill the man?" Why did you speak in cryptic language?

MR PRINSLOO: I don't really understand. Kill, eliminate, it's one and the same thing. Perhaps it's just terminology that was used.

CHAIRPERSON: No, I accept what you have said, but I'm asking why cryptic terms were used and not regular language.

MR PRINSLOO: Chairperson, the only explanation that I can offer is that Col Coetzee, at that stage, was up to date regarding the progress of my investigation. He simply called me into his office and said that there had been discussions at Head Office and that Head Office had issued an instruction for Hani to be eliminated.

CHAIRPERSON: That is why your Advocate asked what your actual instruction was.

MR PRINSLOO: May I just proceed, Chairperson? When I asked what it was, he said that the man had to be killed and he wanted to know whether or not I would be prepared to do the job. This task.

CHAIRPERSON: You see we should be rather circumspect here, that is why I have asked the question. Your Advocate wanted to know exactly what was said and your answer was that a plan had to be made and that your interpretation of that was to eliminate the man. Now you have testified that actually you enquired and that you were then informed that the man had to be killed.

MR PRINSLOO: I beg your pardon, Chairperson, that is not what I intend to display to you. Col Coetzee called me in and told me that he had received an instruction from Head Office for us to make a plan with Hani because he had to be eliminated. That was my evidence. So it is about the elimination and the killing. It's a question of terminology.

CHAIRPERSON: Very well, proceed.


"Then Col Coetzee asked me whether or not I would be prepared to perform the task, seeing as I was well informed regarding Chris Hani's activities. I then told him that I was prepared to do so."

CHAIRPERSON: Before you continue. This order, were you the only person who was completely informed regarding Mr Hani's activities?

MR PRINSLOO: Chairperson, yes, at that stage, because I had viewed all the intelligence documents from the intelligence communities and from Head Office and I had them at my disposal.

CHAIRPERSON: Let me just indicate my destination with this. How would they have been in a position, whoever issued the order, how would they have been in the position, with regard to intelligence, to arrive at this decision? Was this based upon intelligence that you had given them or conveyed to them?

MR PRINSLOO: Perhaps I could elaborate on that point, Chairperson. Intelligence was collected from various informers, not only from me.

CHAIRPERSON: Yes, that is why I have asked, were you the only person?

MR PRINSLOO: No, there were various informers. I referred to Military Intelligence, National Intelligence and other Security Branch informers which I didn't handle. They collected information and it was then synchronised to Head Office. So also the information that I generated during the investigation into the propaganda onslaught, regarding Chris Hani's activities. This was also conducted by means of fortnightly reports which were sent through to Head Office, where all the information would then be centralised.

I had also had sight of the intelligence documents from other areas. For example, the Witwatersrand Security Branch in Johannesburg also had informers reporting about this, as well as the Eastern Cape. P.E. specifically also had informers. So all that information was centralised to the Head Office in Pretoria and I had sight of all those documents.

MS VAN DER WALT: You say that you spoke to Mr Coetzee and declared your willingness to perform the task, what else did you do? Who else did you speak to?


"Col Coetzee then gave me the order to go to Pretoria, in order to honour an appointment with Col Viktor. At that stage I was aware of the fact that he was part of Security Branch Head Office component and that he was responsible for the various desks at Head Office, that he was responsible, among others, for Lesotho and Foreign Affairs and information pertaining to that."

MS VAN DER WALT: I beg your pardon, this Col Viktor, was he Mr Coetzee's senior or not?

MR PRINSLOO: Yes, Chairperson, that is my perspective.

MS VAN DER WALT: Yes, and what happened then?


"I came to Pretoria where I had an appointment with Col Viktor and he then conveyed more-or-less the same that Coetzee had conveyed to me, and asked me whether or not I would be willing to perform the task and I responded yes. I only attached one condition which was that I should have sufficient time to enable me to collect further information regarding Chris Hani's movements before the decision regarding how, where and when the operation would be launched."

MS VAN DER WALT: And this order according to you, came from Head Office itself?

MR PRINSLOO: Yes, that is correct.

MS VAN DER WALT: In the paragraph, the first paragraph you state - in the middle, Honourable Chairperson:

"During this time I received an order from my Divisional Commander, Brig Coetzee. I think the order came from him or Col Viktor."

Are you now certain that the first order that you received, came from Mr Coetzee?

MR PRINSLOO: Yes, Chairperson, because he was my Divisional Commander.

MS VAN DER WALT: And what did you do then?


"I reported back to Col Coetzee in Bloemfontein and he gave an instruction to contact a Sgt Kallie de Bruin from the Ladybrand Security Branch, which also fell under the Bloemfontein command. I had to contact him because he had an informer who had direct access to Chris Hani."

MS VAN DER WALT: Therefore, Mr de Bruin would have had the same information regarding Mr Chris Hani, the same information that you had, or would you not say that?

MR PRINSLOO: I wouldn't be able to say, Chairperson, because I believe that I had a more comprehensive background regarding Mr Hani.

CHAIRPERSON: ...(inaudible)

INTERPRETER: The speaker's microphone is not on.

MR PRINSLOO: For all I know, I cannot speculate about that.

MS VAN DER WALT: Did you then establish contact with him?

MR PRINSLOO: Yes, I made contact with Sgt de Bruin and I drew the inference that he was already informed regarding what it was about. I began to discuss the matter with him and it was clear to me - he didn't say that he didn't know about it. He must have known about it. I drew that inference, the inference that Col Coetzee had already approached him in that regard.

MS VAN DER WALT: Because Col Coetzee sent you to him?

MR PRINSLOO: Yes, that is correct.

MS VAN DER WALT: And what did you do then?


"De Bruin then informed me that he had an informer who had direct access to Hani, as well as the place where Hani was living at that stage.

Basically it boils down to the fact that Hani lived on the Mafiteng Road outside Maseru, in a house where there would sometimes be two to three MK members who acted as Hani's bodyguards as well as his driver.

I then tested the background of the informer - I can say that his name is Ernest Ramatolo, and it was clear to me that he had access to Chris Hani and that he was also aware of certain activities, ANC activities of Chris Hani and I gave him an instruction to return to Lesotho. We made an appointment ..."

CHAIRPERSON: ...(inaudible)

INTERPRETER: The speaker's microphone is not on.

MR PRINSLOO: Yes, Chairperson.

That he had direct access to Hani, because the objective was to determine the movements of Chris Hani ..."


CHAIRPERSON: But you were satisfied that you could trust him?

MR PRINSLOO: Yes, de Bruin gave me the assurance that he had handled this informer for an extended period of time by that stage.

"Then in de Bruin's presence, or at least every time I saw the informer, de Bruin and I were present. I gave the informer certain instructions to determine the movements of Hani.

Upon the first occasion I did not mention to the informer that the purpose was to eliminate Hani. We had various meetings with the informer after that. These meetings were held in the Republic. The informer would come through to the Republic and during these meetings he would report on the movements of Hani, which ultimately emanated that I decided that the best to get rid of Hani would be to plant a bomb under a motor vehicle with which he travelled."

CHAIRPERSON: Over what period of time did you monitor him?

MR PRINSLOO: It was approximately three months.

CHAIRPERSON: What was the purpose of that?

MR PRINSLOO: The purpose was to observe Hani, because he was rather sly. We tried to determine the easiest way to eliminate him. He was the kind of man who went jogging quite regularly in the mornings and initially I considered shooting him with a gun, but he always changed his route, he never followed the same route. So there are various other examples.

"Ultimately it was obvious that he regularly used a certain vehicle with one of his bodyguards. They would use this vehicle to travel to Maseru to conduct ANC business and matters, to fetch post, whatever the case may be, and it was clear that this would be the best way to get rid of him.

I conveyed my decision to Col Coetzee and also conveyed it to Pretoria, to Col Viktor. I told him that I required explosives as well as a strong magnet with - at that stage limpet mines did not exist yet, but the bomb that I would manufacture would work according to the same principles as a limpet mine.

Viktor gave me approximately two kilograms of T&T plastic explosives an electric detonator, as well as the magnet."

CHAIRPERSON: All these materials that you requested were for the purposes of a car bomb?

MR PRINSLOO: Yes, for a bomb to be fitted to a motor vehicle, by means of a magnet.

MS VAN DER WALT: May I just interrupt you at this point. You say that over a period of three months you collected the information, you also stated that Mr Chris Hani lived outside Maseru, did you conduct any investigation into whether other persons such as his wife or children, if he had any at the time, travelled with this vehicle from that house into Maseru?

MR PRINSLOO: Yes, Chairperson. According to all the information from all the other informers, not only this Mr Ramatolo specifically, Dipho Sekemane at that stage, I think she had two small toddlers. They lived in Maseru and upon occasion there was information that he didn't want anybody to live with him because it would have been a security risk. It was only him and two, sometimes three MK members who lived with him in this specific house.

MS VAN DER WALT: You then got the supplies to make the bomb, what did you do then?

MR PRINSLOO: Chair, I prepared and manufactured a bomb and made use of these cake tins with a hole in the middle, which you use to make a ring-shaped cake and it's made of a very light metal and I packed the explosives in this tin and the hole in the middle of the cake tin, in that I placed the magnet and attached it.

MS VAN DER WALT: Now the cake tin you actually attached to these cake tins, one to the other, or you placed one on top of the other.

MR PRINSLOO: Right, and the magnet was in the centre and there was also the source of power, which was a battery and the little battery was also placed in the explosive.

"The fuses from there led to the switch and as soon as pressure was exerted on that, it was a little plastic box, this would cause it to collapse and then the two contact points make a contact and the circuit would be completed and the bomb would be detonated in this way.

The purpose of this was - or the idea was that the bomb had to be placed underneath a front passenger's seat. I don't know what kind of car it was. I remember I did tests on similar cars in the Republic to find out if the magnet was strong enough. Then the switch had to be placed on the back wheel of the car.

The informer, Mr Ramatolo, I told him about this whole story, I gave him proper information and in this process I told him that if he - that I was trying to kill Hani and he associated himself with that objective and declared himself prepared to do that."

CHAIRPERSON: Was this person trained in the use of this type of bomb?

MR PRINSLOO: No, Chairperson, not as far as I know. All that he was required to do is he had to attach this device to the car.

CHAIRPERSON: So it was already pre-assembled?

MR PRINSLOO: Yes, the entire bomb had been prepared and assembled. In other words, you have a bomb and the fuses and the switch and the bomb just had to be attached by means of a magnet to the underside of the passenger seat and the switch had to be attached to the back wheel, so that as soon as the tyres start rolling it would cause pressure on the switch, the circuit would be completed and detonation would take place.

I gave him proper training, I showed him how to attach the bomb, of course in safe circumstance and there was no charge that stage the bomb when I showed him, and he actually could do it very, very quickly, between five and seven seconds it took him to do this, to attach the bomb and the switch and then to depart from the scene.

MS VAN DER WALT: So if I understand you correctly, he practised, he trained?

MR PRINSLOO: Yes, I gave him some training and he practised the scenario.

MS VAN DER WALT: I don't want to keep interrupting you, but Mr Kallie de Bruin, the other applicant, was he present when you spoke to the informer and where he declared himself prepared to do the work? Was he present?

MR PRINSLOO: Yes, he was present on each occasion, because he was actually the handler of the informer and he had to make the arrangements or rendezvous with the informer, who had to come through from Lesotho.

MS VAN DER WALT: Very well.


"At that stage there was some unrest in Lesotho and there were many Police and Defence Force patrols on the roads in Lesotho and the only way which I could see in which to get the informer and the bomb safely to the place where it had to be attached to the car, was to actually buy a car for the informer. It was a Valiant car and I built in a concealed space behind the front seats, in which I then placed the completed bomb and the informer knew exactly how to open this space and how to take it out and how to go and use it.

De Bruin and I then on one afternoon, I think it was sometime during winter, I don't know exactly when, we met him near the BK border, that's the border post between South Africa and Lesotho. We gave him the car containing the bomb. He went into Lesotho to go and place the bomb in the car that same night, in Hani's car. In other words, Hani would use the vehicle the next morning and then the detonation would take place.

We waited somewhere in the field, in the bushes, until the next day round about 10/11/12 o'clock and the informer, well the arrangement was that the informer after placing the bomb, the next morning as soon as the border post opened, would return to the Republic to report on what happened. He didn't arrive.

I discussed the matter with de Bruin and told him that I was going to go back to Bloemfontein to report to Col Coetzee, because we hadn't heard anything from the informer, we didn't know what had happened. When I arrived in Bloemfontein, Col Coetzee told me that there had apparently been a report on the radio that there had been an explosion and that the informer had apparently been injured in this explosion and was in a hospital in Maseru.

Later I heard, at a stage when I was no longer directly involved with the further fate of the informer, I heard that he had been given bail and that he had been charged in Lesotho and that he'd been given bail. In the meanwhile, Col Coetzee had told me that I had to come to Pretoria to report to, I think it was then Brig Johan Coetzee, later the Commissioner of Police, at that stage he was the Chief of the Security Branch, I had to come and report to him as to what had happened.

I came to Pretoria and along with Col Viktor, I reported to Brig Coetzee, Johan Coetzee that is, regarding everything I knew about this incident up to the point when the informer left us. I don't know what happened to the informer after that.

Approximately seven years after that - well, in the meantime I'd been transferred to Pretoria Security Branch and I met the informer at Vlakplaas for the first time and I asked him what had happened during that incident and he explained to me what took place, or what had taken place."

MS VAN DER WALT: Could you perhaps tell the Committee, because one would like to know what actually went wrong, what was the informer supposed to do? You said he had to attach the bomb to the vehicle, but what safety measures did he have to put in place?


"As I said earlier on, the bomb was in this cake tin and from there there were these two electric fuses going to the switch, which was long enough to actually fit it onto the back tyre or wheel. There were two poles, a positive and a negative pole and in-between there was a piece of cellophane and the informer had to place this switch on the back tyre to get it out of the way, and then he had to attach the bomb by means of a magnet and after that he had to remove the cellophane strip which was between these two points of contact.

What he explained to me what happened was that he placed the bomb next to the car first and then he removed the cellophane from the switch and then he placed the bomb underneath the car, or when he wanted to do that he actually made accidental contact with the switch with his knee and then that of course completed the circuit and the bomb went off."

CHAIRPERSON: Now ...(intervention)

INTERPRETER: Something about seven seconds. The speaker's microphone was off.


MS VAN DER WALT: You said that you reported back to the Commissioner, Mr Coetzee and Mr Viktor, where Mr Viktor was present. Was he aware of the order which you'd been given? That is Mr Coetzee, the Commissioner.

MR PRINSLOO: Yes, that's how it appeared to me.

MS VAN DER WALT: Mr Prinsloo, was there no other way in which the Security Police could have stopped the operations and activities of Mr Hani in Lesotho, before you got this instruction?

MR PRINSLOO: Chairperson, I wasn't myself involved but I am aware of something, it was told to me by some Security Police members, that there had been certain attempts to entice Mr Hani under cover to cross the Caledon River, to come to the South African side so that he could be arrested and that he could be dealt with further within the Republic of South Africa, but apparently those attempts to lure him across the border failed.

MS VAN DER WALT: Did you regard it as essential to stop Mr Hani's activities?

MR PRINSLOO: Yes, I associated myself with that objective and I saw it as the only way to stop this threat. The only way I saw to avert the threat was to eliminate him.

MS VAN DER WALT: In your Annexure B you set what your political motivation was. Why did you do it? Did you derive any benefit from this act, or why did you commit it?

MR PRINSLOO: No, I gained no benefit or advantage from this act, I set out the reasons why I did in this annexure and I did it by virtue of my convictions, the convictions which I held at that stage.

MS VAN DER WALT: So you did it for the then government and the South African Police?

MR PRINSLOO: That's correct.

MS VAN DER WALT: And you've already testified that that was done on the orders from Head Office.


MS VAN DER WALT: When you went to Mr Viktor and you told him of your decision that you were going to eliminate Mr Hani by means of an explosives device attached to a car, did he approve of it or not?

MR PRINSLOO: Yes, he did approve of it and he also gave me the necessary material, the explosives etcetera.

MS VAN DER WALT: You have ...(intervention)

CHAIRPERSON: I just want to make sure of the way in which he was supposed to be eliminated. Did he tell you about that, because he had already approved the elimination when you got the order?

MR PRINSLOO: Yes, what we were concerned with was the actual manner in which he was to eliminated and that's why he gave me the explosives.

MS VAN DER WALT: In previous applications you've testified before the Amnesty Committee, are you aware of Exhibit A which had been handed in to the Committee and which sets out the general background of the Security Branch?

MR PRINSLOO: Yes, that the general background to the amnesty applications.

MS VAN DER WALT: And are you asking the Committee to incorporate that information in your application?


MS VAN DER WALT: Mr Prinsloo, are you applying for amnesty for conspiracy to commit murder?


MS VAN DER WALT: As well as an attempt to murder Mr Hani and attempted murder of unknown persons that could have been travelling with Mr Hani?


MS VAN DER WALT: And you're also applying for amnesty for malicious damage to property.


MS VAN DER WALT: As well as for obstructing the ends of justice.


MS VAN DER WALT: And the possession of explosives, illegal possession of explosives?


MS VAN DER WALT: You're also applying for amnesty for any other offence or offences which may flow from your acts for which you're applying for amnesty?


MS VAN DER WALT: And any other delictual liability which may arise.


MS VAN DER WALT: Thank you, Honourable Chairperson.


MS CAMBANIS: Chairperson, I think we've agreed that it would be more fair for Mr Richard to question before me. Thank you.

CHAIRPERSON: Maybe the representatives for the co-applicants should go first.

MS CAMBANIS: I wasn't thinking, I apologise.

MR NORTIER: No questions from Mr Coetzee's side.


MR PRINSLOO: No questions on behalf of de Bruin.


CROSS-EXAMINATION BY MR RICHARD: Thank you, Chairperson. With your leave, I'll proceed.

Mr Prinsloo, if I understood your evidence correctly, your unit was stationed in Ladybrand.

MR PRINSLOO: No, I said I was stationed in Bloemfontein.

MR RICHARD: Now was there a unit stationed in Ladybrand?

MR PRINSLOO: Yes, that is what I said. There was a branch, a Security Branch in Ladybrand.

MR RICHARD: Under whose command was that?

MR PRINSLOO: I can't remember exactly, there was a change in the command ...(intervention)

CHAIRPERSON: ...(indistinct - no microphone) Ladybrand, as far as this case is concerned that would have been Mr de Bruin?

MR PRINSLOO: That's correct. Obviously, all the branches fell under Bloemfontein Headquarters.

CHAIRPERSON: But your act in Ladybrand only dealt with de Bruin.


MR RICHARD: Now how many people were in Ladybrand? How strong was the presence of the Security Police?

MR PRINSLOO: I would have to speculate to answer that, especially in respect of that particular time, because as I've already said my investigation covered a whole period after the '76 riots until '80, so I can't say exactly how many members there were. There were white people as well as black members in Ladybrand Security Branch.

MR RICHARD: So that means there were a number of people, it was more than just Mr de Bruin?

MR PRINSLOO: Yes, that's correct.

MR RICHARD: Now within that operation, do you have any idea of how many informers they used in Lesotho, from Ladybrand?

MR PRINSLOO: It's difficult for me to say. Could we just distinguish here between the Security Branch, Security Branch there were quite a few informers and it wasn't only the Ladybrand informers, I also refer to Witwatersrand, Eastern Cape informers who were involved from the Security Branch, then I refer to National Intelligence, I don't know how many informers they had, as well as Military Intelligence.

MR RICHARD: Now when we come to Mr de Bruin, how many informers did he take information from?

MR PRINSLOO: I don't know, I can only talk about the one informer.

CHAIRPERSON: Mr Richard, is there any dispute that your client was used the way the applicant described?

MR RICHARD: It's not in dispute, but the question I'm leading to Chairperson, is Mr Ramatolo was chosen and it's clear that I've already established that there were a number to choose from.

Now on what criteria did you select ...(intervention)

CHAIRPERSON: What has that got to do with the price of eggs, on what basis he was chosen? The fact of the matter is that a contact with Mr Hani was sought after and he was produced.

MR RICHARD: Thank you, Chairperson.

In your evidence-in-chief you said that you tested the background of the informer, Mr Ernest Ramatolo, in what way did you test it?

MR PRINSLOO: Chairperson, I had a discussion with him to try and find out whether he really had direct access to Chris Hani's home and that he could give information as to the movements of Chris Hani, and he convinced me that that was indeed the case, that he did have that access and that he could satisfy those needs which I had.

MR RICHARD: Did you make enquiries as to what his political affiliations and opinions were at the time?

MR PRINSLOO: I relied on Sgt de Bruin who was his handler and Sgt de Bruin assured me that this was a reliable person. If I remember correctly, I think the informer, Mr Ramatolo was the Secretary or the Chairperson of a youth wing within Lesotho, which opposed the Basotholand National Party which was in government at the time.

MR RICHARD: So you would not dispute that through one method or another, Mr Ramatolo was persuaded or taught or told that Mr Hani, the SACP, the ANC, were enemies of both Lesotho and the Republic of South Africa?

MR PRINSLOO: No, Ramatolo was an intelligent person and I never got the impression that he had any other opinions of the matter.

MR RICHARD: Thank you. Now were you aware of his citizenship at that time?

MR PRINSLOO: Yes. According to my information he was a citizen of Lesotho.

CHAIRPERSON: Is that your instructions, that he was a Lesotho citizen?

MR RICHARD: Yes, he was a Lesotho citizen.

Now did that matter to you that you chose a foreign national?

MR PRINSLOO: No, I only was looking for a person who had direct access to Chris Hani and he was an informer in the service of the Security Branch of the South African Police, at that stage.

MR RICHARD: Do you know how long he had been an informer?

MR PRINSLOO: No. Apart from what I said in my evidence-in-chief, mainly that de Bruin assured me that Ramatolo had been giving information for some considerable time to the Security Branch.

MR RICHARD: Now money. What your relationship with the informers, did you ever remunerate them for their services?

MR PRINSLOO: Are you talking generally or more specifically in respect of Mr Ramatolo?

MR RICHARD: First generally and then in the specifics of Mr Ramatolo.

MR PRINSLOO: Chair, yes, informers were paid for services rendered and it was based on their production.

MR RICHARD: And was Mr Ramatolo ever paid?

MR PRINSLOO: I don't know about that, I wasn't his handler, so I didn't deal with that aspect. At no stage did I discuss that part with him.

MR RICHARD: Would it have been reasonable in the circumstances of the time, that before the conspiracy to assassinate the late Mr Hani was formed, there was an expectation of money or a taxi in return for the information? The expectation of a taxi or the equivalent in money. A kombi.

MR PRINSLOO: No, Chairperson. Once again I come back to the fact that that would have been de Bruin's function to deal with that aspect.

MR RICHARD: My question was not whose function, it was, was it in the ordinary ...(intervention)

MR PRINSLOO: No, I didn't know. That's what I said, Chair. I'm not aware of that. It wasn't my function.

MR RICHARD: But you do not dispute that it might have been offered?

MR PRINSLOO: No, I can't testify about something which I don't know about.

MR RICHARD: Then by the same token, you would not dispute or know anything about whether Mr Ramatolo was offered anything for the assassination of Mr Hani?

MR PRINSLOO: No, I can't, I can't dispute that because I don't know about that.

MR RICHARD: Wouldn't that have been something that you discussed with Mr de Bruin?

MR PRINSLOO: No, that wasn't my function and my role. De Bruin was the handler of the informer and I only used the informer for a very specific purpose. As far as the remuneration etcetera, payment for services rendered were concerned, as far as the purpose that I used him for, that was de Bruin's baby.

CHAIRPERSON: If I may just take up this point. You would have known that he hadn't done what you'd asked him to do without some form of payment.

MR PRINSLOO: I think that is a reasonable inference, yes.

CHAIRPERSON: I think the question is aimed in that direction. In those circumstances, was it discussed with you how much this person - he's not an informer, or let me put it this way, in English they call it a Mike ...(indistinct), in other words somebody who is paid for murder, I can't remember the correct term now, a mercenary.


CHAIRPERSON: Was that never discussed with you?


CHAIRPERSON: No, I understand ...(intervention)

MR PRINSLOO: As far as I was concerned, that was de Bruin's task, he had to deal with that.

CHAIRPERSON: So as far as you were concerned, you knew that it would have been discussed with him but it was de Bruin's job to do that?

MR PRINSLOO: Yes, I was only looking for a person, I was looking for an informer who would give me that specific information.

CHAIRPERSON: Yes, his status changed after that?

MR PRINSLOO: Yes, of course, but it wasn't my purpose or function to, in respect of any reward or remuneration etcetera, to offer such money or remuneration.

CHAIRPERSON: Did he ever ask you for these things?

MR PRINSLOO: No, no, he didn't.

MR RICHARD: Thank you, Chairperson.

Now if Mr de Bruin had needed money for any purpose, such as the one I'm eluding to, from whom would he have got it?

MR PRINSLOO: There are certain procedures laid down in terms of which this would have taken place. A claim is submitted, it had to be motivated, an amount of money was mentioned or named and de Bruin was in Ladybrand, so it would have been conveyed via his Branch Commander to Bloemfontein, Divisional Headquarters, it would have been sent through for approval by the Divisional Commander, who would have been Col Coetzee in this case. Each Security Branch and Divisional Security Branch had a certain limit, a certain amount which could be used for this purpose and if that amount exceeded the limit, it then had to be referred to Security Headquarters, who would then approve the disbursement in terms of the extended limit. So I wouldn't know about that, it wasn't my function.

MR RICHARD: So the long and the short of my line of questioning is that while you might not know what was offered or promised or discussed, for a person as important as Mr Hani, you wouldn't find it shocking to hear that a figure of R5 000 or R6 000 was offered as an inducement?

MR PRINSLOO: Chair, I can't comment on that because I don't know what the specific circumstances were. Each case has to be treated on its own merits, so if it was R5 000 or R6 000, I would say it's perhaps a little bit on the low side.

MR RICHARD: Thank you. Now were you aware of any - let me rephrase that. What training did Mr Ramatolo receive?

MR PRINSLOO: Training is a very wide concept, are you referring to the explosive device and the use of that?

CHAIRPERSON: No, I think the question is once again as I put to you earlier, how did he know what to do?

MR PRINSLOO: Yes, I said it in my evidence-in-chief and I will repeat it, there were several occasions in which I gave him practical training in the field using a vehicle, we used a dummy bomb similar to the one which we made later and I also got him to train with the actual bomb, without of course the explosive part and the source of power in it, I told him where to put it and where to put the switch. That was the kind of training which I gave him and I also told him how dangerous it was and that's why I told him "You first put the switch on the tyre, you get that out of the way and then you attach the bomb to the car." The switch had to be gotten out of the way first and on his version, later, as he told me, he just changed the order, he wanted to first attach the bomb and then he wanted to do something with the switch. So that was the training per se in terms of the explosive device was concerned.

MR RICHARD: Was he ever trained in anything else, like a firearm?

MR PRINSLOO: I don't know, Chairperson, my contact with him was regarding the information and the explosive device.

MR RICHARD: Because he will give evidence to the effect that before the bomb was presented as an option, he was trained for some 45 minutes in the use of a Makarov pistol and the idea was to assassinate Mr Hani with that. Would you know anything about that?

MR PRINSLOO: No, Chairperson, I ...(intervention)

CHAIRPERSON: Who does he say gave him such training, Mr Richard?

MR RICHARD: He will say that training was given by Mr de Bruin and the witness under cross-examination.

CHAIRPERSON: It is being put to you that the witness will say ...(intervention)

MR PRINSLOO: Yes, I heard.

CHAIRPERSON: ... at the very least, that you were present when that training was given.

MR PRINSLOO: I cannot imagine anything like that, Chairperson. As I have said, once again the statement has been made here that he will testify that he received training in a Makarov pistol in order to shoot Mr Hani dead and I say no, that is not so. Because I have already indicated that there was an option to take Mr Hani out with a gun or a firearm due to his jogging. The idea would be to shoot him when he was alone at a suitable time, but I abandoned that option because it was not a viable option for me, there were too many risks involved with it. Also the fact that Mr Hani followed a different jogging route every day.

MR RICHARD: Mr Ramatolo will continue to say that indeed he once was in the street with the firearm, a Makarov pistol, and Mr Hani was in his immediate presence and he decided not to proceed because he couldn't shoot somebody that he didn't see as his enemy, in cold blood. Would you know anything about that?

MR PRINSLOO: No, Chairperson, I don't know anything about that.

CHAIRPERSON: Is this the same person who in fact planted the bomb?


Now the training with the bomb, was it on one or more occasions?

MR MALAN: He did say "on a number of occasions" Mr Richard, please don't repeat the evidence.

MR LAX: Now for how long did the training in total endure for?

CHAIRPERSON: Well obviously not long enough, it didn't work.

MR RICHARD: Minutes? Was it one hour or ten hours or three hours?

MR PRINSLOO: Chairperson, there were various occasions

and the minimum period of time, if I recall correctly, in the field, was at least an hour at a time because I wanted to be certain that the man could place the bomb and the detonator with closed eyes, so to speak. There were various hours of training. As I have stated, he could place the device within five to seven seconds ultimately, as it was presented to him.

MR RICHARD: And if Mr Ramatolo gave evidence to the fact that he was trained for a sum total of 45 minutes, what would your comment be?

MR PRINSLOO: No, I think that he is groping in the dark, I would say that it would be at least a minimum of three hours. As I have already stated, I had him practise with a dummy bomb to begin with, afterwards I gave him the real thing so that he could get used to it, and this took quite a number or exercises, at least three to four hours worth of exercises with the correct apparatus.

MR RICHARD: May I simply confer with my client for one minute to find out if there are any further questions I should put?

Mr Prinsloo, are you certain as to the identity of the opposition party that Mr Ramatolo belonged to in Lesotho? He will deny that he was a Chairperson, but he'll say he was an ordinary member of something known as the BSP. Could that be true?

MR PRINSLOO: It may be so.

MR CAMBANIS: Sorry to interrupt, Chair, I didn't get the question. If it could please be repeated.

CHAIRPERSON: He suggested that he did not belong to a political organisation that the witness had testified to earlier but rather he was an ordinary member of something called the BSP.

MR RICHARD: Nothing of moment turns on the question, it's simply that he wasn't a Chairperson of the BNP, but a member of some other party, which was in opposition to the then Lesotho Government. The second point that my client requested that I amplify, Mr Prinsloo, did you take the implicated person, Mr Ramatolo, to a garage and show him a certain Stanza motor vehicle on a hoist, where you could see the underside?

CHAIRPERSON: ...(indistinct)

INTERPRETER: The speaker was unclear.

MR PRINSLOO: Yes, I would image something like that. I would imagine that was the vehicle which was used by Hani at that stage. It was in preparation for the placing of explosive device for which Ramatolo received training, so that he would know precisely what he was supposed to do.

MR RICHARD: Another point, are you certain about where you instructed him to place the bomb? Was it on the left or right-hand side?

MR PRINSLOO: Chairperson, I've already stated in my evidence-in-chief that it was below the front passenger seat because according to Ramatolo's information, Hani always travelled with one of his bodyguards who also acted as the driver of the vehicle.

MR RICHARD: Would it have been possible to detonate the bomb by inadvertently leaning on the car, with the result that the motor vehicle moved?

MR PRINSLOO: No, Chairperson, the instruction and the training indicated that it should be placed near the top point of the back wheel so it should complete a semicircle before it hit the switch, which would then bring the two contact points into contact with each other.

MR MALAN: Sorry Mr Richard.

Mr Prinsloo, I just want to understand, if the detonator was placed at the top of the wheel, how would you know that it wouldn't fall off onto the road? Would it be fixed to the wheel?

MR PRINSLOO: Yes, a certain glue was used, it was attached to the detonator and this would then be attached to the wheel, the tyre of the wheel, the top part of the wheel so that it would be affixed there and travel with the wheel as it made its revolution.

MR RICHARD: No further questions.


MS CAMBANIS: Thank you, Chair. I'm instructed by my client that she has no interest in this application and simply wishes to proceed to hear the implicated party's evidence, thank you.

MR RICHARD: Thank you, Chairperson.

I call Mr Ramatolo.

ADV STEENKAMP: Thank you, Honourable Chairman, I've got no questions.


CHAIRPERSON: Is everybody in agreement that this is the order that we shall follow?

MS VAN DER WALT: I have not objections that it takes place as such.

MR RICHARD: I believe it's necessary for a short adjournment, so as to arrange a place for the witness to sit.

CHAIRPERSON: Before we proceed there are other people who also have a say in this matter. And there is the question of further questions to this witness.

ADV SIGODI: Sorry, I did not get my notes clear when you were saying - how much explosives did you give to Mr Ramatolo. My notes are not clear on that. For the bomb.

MR PRINSLOO: Chairperson, there were two cake tins which were on top of one another. There was approximately 2 kilograms of TNT plastic explosives.


MR PRINSLOO: Yes, that is correct, TNT.

ADV SIGODI: And you said you got this from?

MR PRINSLOO: I obtained it from Col Viktor in Pretoria.

ADV SIGODI: And how did you get them across the border?

MR PRINSLOO: Chairperson, I had already prepared the bomb or explosive device and I concealed it in a concealed space of the Valiant motor vehicle which I purchased, so that Mr Ramatolo would be able to cross the border with ease and move around freely in Lesotho. If he were stopped with the vehicle, it would not have been discovered during the search. I was aware of the unrest in Lesotho and the strong Military and Police presence on the Lesotho roads.

ADV SIGODI: So it was Mr Ramatolo who took it from South Africa across the border.

MR PRINSLOO: Yes, Chairperson, as I have stated via the PK Bridge border post.

ADV SIGODI: And what time was this explosion set for? What time was it supposed to go off?

MR PRINSLOO: Chairperson, that depended upon circumstances. The explosion was foreseen for the following morning when Mr Hani got into his vehicle and travelled to Maseru. That was his only fixed routine. It was foreseen that it would be during that period, between 6 o'clock and 8 o'clock in the morning when he drove out.

ADV SIGODI: And where would he park his car normally, inside the yard or outside the yard?

MR PRINSLOO: Chairperson, the sketch plan which was provided to me by the informer indicated that it was an open place and the vehicle was parked next to the house. Outside, in other words.

ADV SIGODI: No, where I'm coming to is, were there any measures or precautions taken so that other people would not be injured by the explosion?

MR PRINSLOO: Yes, that is why I referred to the possibility that only the bodyguard come driver would incur shrapnel injuries if the bomb had exploded as planned. It was a formed charge. In other words, it would have detonated upwards and down to the ground. By nature of the situation one would not be able to control the shrapnel which would be flying all over the place.

ADV SIGODI: Do you know how much damage happened to the car when it exploded?

MR PRINSLOO: No, Chairperson, I have no idea. I assume that the vehicle was a wreck.

CHAIRPERSON: Mr Prinsloo, with a two kilogram bomb it is more probable that everybody in the vehicle would also have been killed.

MR PRINSLOO: Yes, Chairperson, I foresaw that possibility. That is what I stated. I just want to add at this point that it would depend upon where the bomb was at that stage, whether it was still on the ground or attached to the car.

CHAIRPERSON: Are you referring to the plan?

MR PRINSLOO: Yes, that is correct.

CHAIRPERSON: Tell me, what was your rank at that stage?

MR PRINSLOO: I was a Warrant Officer.

CHAIRPERSON: And you were involved in the activities of Mr Hani and you had to monitor his activities and collect intelligence regarding his activities.

MR PRINSLOO: Yes, initially it began with the distribution of the pamphlets and then it extended to his general activities, at which point I had sight of all the other information which was generated regarding his activities.

CHAIRPERSON: Why did you not attempt to kill him yourself if he was such a problem for you, why did you have to wait for an instruction?

MR PRINSLOO: I was junior member, I did not possess the capacity to take such a decision. The thought never occurred to me. I would not have done something like that, I was only investigating his activities and the threat that he presented. I don't know what else Head Office knew besides me.

CHAIRPERSON: What I'm trying to determine is that you testified that it was not the only way of eliminating him, was that your attitude towards him? If so, why did you wait for an order?

MR PRINSLOO: I was a junior member at that stage and I already stated that the idea never occurred to me. After Col Coetzee spoke to me about it I began to understand that it was the only possibility in order to neutralise those activities, because Hani was the sort of man who played his cards quite closely. He had a man working for him as the second-in-command, his name was Maloi, he was a comrade, and it was clear that he played his cards very closely.

CHAIRPERSON: On page 44, in the middle of paragraph 1 regarding Mr Hani's application, or the application regarding Mr Hani, it was said that:

"At that stage in 1980, I was involved with the large-scale propaganda which was spread by Chris Hani from Lesotho to South Africa. During this time I received an order from my Divisional Commander, Brig Eben Coetzee."

and you continue. The impression that I gain from this application as it appears here is that regarding you, and we are not referring to the order or this conspiracy as such, for you it was about the fact that there was a large-scale propaganda campaign which had been launched from Lesotho to South Africa. That is the only reason, as it appears here.

MR PRINSLOO: Yes, I agree that that is the impression which has been created, that is why I elaborated on it in my viva voce evidence when I stated that the propaganda campaign had been under way for quite some time. At that stage it had already been under way for two years, during which the pamphlets had been distributed and the other information had been obtained.

CHAIRPERSON: Then why did you have to kill him if he was spreading pamphlets?

MR PRINSLOO: No Chairperson, perhaps you don't understand me. What I said was that initially I became involved with Hani and his activities as a result of this propaganda campaign and in the same process I made use of all information from all sources pertaining to Hani and his activities, and from that it emanated quite clearly what his actual role was, not only regarding the pamphlets as it would appear to be at face value in the documents.

CHAIRPERSON: Was there any other way out except the attempt to kill him?

MR PRINSLOO: I could never have thought of anything like that, I was only a junior member.

CHAIRPERSON: Then at which rank were you supposed to have been in order to take such a decision?

MR PRINSLOO: I don't think the rank exists. I was reacting ...(intervention)

CHAIRPERSON: Or how senior would you have had to have been at that stage in order to effect such decisions?

MR PRINSLOO: It's very difficult to say. Under those circumstances I never even thought about it in my wildest dreams, all I knew at that stage was that Hani would have to be neutralised by some or other means at some or other point. I'm not necessarily referring to killing, but neutralisation, whether it be by placing him in exile or destroying his structures.

CHAIRPERSON: Well let us then just stick to the facts. It was decided that he would be killed.

MR PRINSLOO: Yes, under those circumstances that was the decision, that is correct.

CHAIRPERSON: And you say that you would not have been able to make a decision yourself because your status was too junior at that stage.

MR PRINSLOO: Yes, Chairperson.

CHAIRPERSON: Then I'm asking in general, at which rank or how senior should a person have been in order to make such a decision independently?

MR PRINSLOO: Then you would have to consider Hani who was a high profile ANC/SACP/MK member, he enjoyed a lot of favour with the Lesotho Government, he came and went as he pleased. I would say that it would have had to have been taken on a senior managerial level.


MR PRINSLOO: Well we would at least begin with the Divisional Commander whose area it was within which those activities were taking place, because the Free State was partially responsible for Lesotho as well as KwaZulu Natal, who also had informers there. It would all depend on where the information came from.

CHAIRPERSON: In the Free State, on what level would a person be to make such a decision?

MR PRINSLOO: Divisional Commander level.

CHAIRPERSON: Could any less senior person make such a decision?

MR PRINSLOO: No, not at that stage, not according to my knowledge.

CHAIRPERSON: Did you ever achieve a rank in your career which placed you in the position to have been able to make such decisions on your own?

MR PRINSLOO: No, I would never have taken such a decision on my own per se, it was conducted after a proposal from a colleague of mine who was more senior.

CHAIRPERSON: But if you were ever in the position that you could have made such a decision at any time after the incident.

MR PRINSLOO: No, not me myself.

CHAIRPERSON: You were never that high in the rank order?

MR PRINSLOO: With regard to Hani?


MR PRINSLOO: No. It was the only time that I acted regarding Hani's activities, because in 1983 I was transferred from Bloemfontein. I knew of his further activities, but it was information ...(intervention)

CHAIRPERSON: Where were you transferred to?

MR PRINSLOO: Pretoria Division Northern Transvaal.

CHAIRPERSON: The reason why I have put all these questions is that an attempt has been made in 1980 to kill him. In case I am mistaken, because I never heard of any further attempt, why didn't you once again make a similar attempt in 1985 when things were far more aggravated?

MR PRINSLOO: I don't whether Mr Hani was in Lesotho in 1985.

CHAIRPERSON: But wherever he was Mr Hani was a target for just about the entire government.

MR PRINSLOO: Chairperson once again my job description was not to work with Lesotho after my transfer. Then my job description shifted to the former Bophuthatswana and Swaziland. It was a completely different milieu of work. Swaziland, Mozambique, Botswana. It had virtually nothing to do with the Lesotho situation per se, with the exception of a few documents, but I was never again really involved with Lesotho and Chris Hani as such.

CHAIRPERSON: I've seen in your application you have said that when you participated in this attempt you were a member of the South African Police as well as the National Party.

MR PRINSLOO: That's correct.

CHAIRPERSON: Are you still a member of the Police?


CHAIRPERSON: Are you still a member of the National Party?


CHAIRPERSON: Are you a member of any party?

MR PRINSLOO: No, not at all, none.

CHAIRPERSON: Why did you leave the National Party?

MR PRINSLOO: Chairperson, I think that there has been much debate about it, particularly by those appearing before the TRC and the Amnesty Committee. People realised at a certain point they were used by the politicians in order to achieve political objectives and that when one was a foot-soldier, the politicians all ran away and now the foot-soldiers have to stay down the full responsibility and I cannot associate myself with the political party who betrays me, I regard this as betrayal.

CHAIRPERSON: At which stage do you believe you were deceived?

MR PRINSLOO: I think it began with the World Trade Centre, with those negotiations, when they were initiated and put into motion.

CHAIRPERSON: You did not agree with it?

MR PRINSLOO: With what?

CHAIRPERSON: With that as your ultimate destination.

MR PRINSLOO: What took place afterwards and the fact that the politicians denied all knowledge of the government of the day and the orders which it issued in order to maintain its position and to ensure stability in the country.

CHAIRPERSON: You see one of the Act's objectives is an attempt to get this country back on track and to reconcile the people of the country and to achieve this in a spirit of total freedom. Would you be able to do that?

MR PRINSLOO: I'm a realist, I've done that a long time ago already, I've got no problems with that. But once again we just have to look at the milieu in which I grew up.

CHAIRPERSON: Yes no, I understand that. You see I agree with you, a couple of people have testified here and have said here before similar Panels as this that they were misled, that they had been betrayed and that they did what they had done for the country and for the government and nobody has given me an acceptable answer to the following questions. Could they not have thought for themselves that apartheid was wrong and that that was the reason why people were planting bombs etcetera?

MR PRINSLOO: Chairperson, if you talk about they or them I suppose you're referring to the politicians ...(intervention)

CHAIRPERSON: No. Look, we're talking about the so-called enemies of the time, the people who were fighting apartheid.

MR PRINSLOO: I think I'm realistic enough, Chairperson, to realise that. I think at some stage, and I think that goes for all my colleagues as well, that you get a point where you start asking yourself questions. When the political situation started changing we started asking questions. There was a lot of pressure exerted on one and you acted outside of the scope of your normal powers and functions and no questions were asked and your loyalty, well you believed in the cause as a rest of the milieu in which you were born and educated and you believed that that was right and correct. So, I'm not a racist or a hater of people, but in the carrying out of my duties, yes - to keep the government then in power and to protect the country against a total onslaught, yes I associated myself with those things. I associated myself with that until my eyes were opened, perhaps too late.

CHAIRPERSON: You see I don't hold it against you, I'm simply trying to understand how people were thinking in those days. The questions I'm asking now are not aimed at trying to prove that you're not telling the truth, it's got nothing to do with that, it has everything to do with that one factor, namely - and that is something which the Act demands, namely that people must start living in peace with one another irrespective of the colour of their skins and apartheid was based on exactly that. So I'm asking, at that stage all the people who were protecting apartheid for the government's sake and who were acting for the government in this country, my question is simply this, could they not argue and reason for themselves and come to the conclusion that we're actually protecting something which is wrong?

MR PRINSLOO: If you argue like that, Chairperson, then you can ask the same question of the ANC. It's very easy now with hindsight to say our cause was a just cause, as they said, then I can also say my cause was a just cause. So I think with all due respect, if you're an armchair critic I suppose you can take that approach and say yes, you should have asked yourself certain questions and if you realised that you could play the role up to a point. But perhaps you didn't realise that. We in the Security Branch were actually the only line of defence between anarchy and stability, stability of the government of the day and of the people. Well in any case that's how I saw it and that's how I interpreted it. And there were high demands made of you in those days.

CHAIRPERSON: Did you never during your career in the Police think "Look, I'm in the Police and I'm being used and I'm defending the wrong policy"?

MR PRINSLOO: Yes, I conceded that.

CHAIRPERSON: Now I'm asking, during your career as a policeman, did that thought occur to you during your career as a policeman?

MR PRINSLOO: I think I want to distinguish between my career in the Uniform Branch, in the Detective Branch and later in the Security Branch ...(intervention)

CHAIRPERSON: No well at any stage, I'm referring to any stage.

MR PRINSLOO: Security Branch, yes. As I've already said, after the political negotiations commenced and I was also at the World Trade Centre and I was present there and I have had first-hand experience of what happened there, and that's where one realised how cheap politicians and their talk was actually, there was a kind of instigation taking place there, there was a total onslaught. And now, and this is my own quote, everything which you stood for and which you defended they were just giving away on a platter.

CHAIRPERSON: I know you testified that you're not currently a member of any political party, what do you think of all the political parties currently in the country, the Communist Party, ANC, I don't know what the new name is for the National Party democratic alliance, in the old South Africa we said those parties were just all the same, now we know.

MR PRINSLOO: Well if you want my honest opinion, Chairperson, I say I think nothing of the whole business, I think they should establish one party for the whole South Africa.

CHAIRPERSON: A one party State?

MR PRINSLOO: No, no, I'm not saying on party State, I said that they must establish one party which has the right to principles, the correct principles, so that we can prevent our past history re-enacting itself, so we can prevent people being misled again. Misled by government bodies and politicians to carry out their political objectives for them.

CHAIRPERSON: But you are prepared to live in this country with all the people here and with all the political parties with their problems etcetera.

MR PRINSLOO: I've never had any war or problems with them because I grew up with them, I've worked with them for all these years, so I have no problem with that. I did however make a mistake in that I allowed myself to be misled and abused and used.

MR MALAN: Mr Prinsloo, this is very interesting, I don't want to waste too much time. You said you were a member of the National Party, were you a member or a supporter?

MR PRINSLOO: I was a member, fully paid up member.

CHAIRPERSON: Where did you live, which ward, constituency?

MR PRINSLOO: Bloemfontein, Noordhoek.

MR MALAN: Who was your Member of Parliament?

MR PRINSLOO: Kobie Coetzee.

MR MALAN: Did you tell Kobie Coetzee that you were killing people?

MR PRINSLOO: No, it wasn't my duty.

MR MALAN: No, I know it wasn't your duty, but I'm asking you this because you say that the politicians got you to do all these things.

MR PRINSLOO: No, you misunderstand me, I didn't make any exceptions. I said look at the milieu where I grew up in and what was said politically-speaking, by the politicians of the day and by the government of the day. You're aware of what was said from political platforms.

MR MALAN: Yes, but I'm trying to phrase the question for you. Let me just give you the rational behind the question. You're saying that the politicians misled you and abused and exploited you, politicians in general.


MR MALAN: You say the politicians abused the Police.


MR MALAN: And you did everything you could to keep the government and the National Party in power.


MR MALAN: And when the same government and political party, the National Party, decided not to stay in power anymore by starting the negotiations at the World Trade Centre, you decided that they actually betrayed you, that they were giving up everything, everything for which you'd fought. So my question then is, is that a reasonable statement to say that "They used and abused me and then I got angry with them because they betrayed me, because they were simply giving up everything which I stood for, which I believed in." That was your evidence.

MR PRINSLOO: No, we can go and look at the tapes of the evidence. What I said was they did not want to take responsibility and they were abandoning the foot-soldiers.

MR MALAN: No, no, that's the second part. That's why I asked you the question about Kobie Coetzee. Kobie Coetzee was not only a National Party representative and your MP, he was also a member of government.


MR MALAN: Now all these things which you did, according to you Kobie Coetzee must have been aware of it and he must have approved it and given orders for these kinds of things to take place and be carried out.

MR PRINSLOO: Chairperson, you yourself you were in politics ...(intervention)

MR MALAN: Yes, I know and that's why I'm asking the question.

MR PRINSLOO: In that period, you're asking me now about my personal political convictions. I'm not an expert and I've never said I was an expert in the field of politics. That's simply my own personal view and I stand by what I said. You must look at the time when the onslaught was at its critical height, what was said by the politicians from political platforms ...(intervention)

MR MALAN: No, but ...

MR PRINSLOO: Please give me a chance.

MR MALAN: No, I understand that and I accept that.

MR PRINSLOO: You also have to look at the pressure under which you were supposed to work. At all costs the so-called enemy had to be resisted and fought and everything possible had to be done to avert this onslaught. That's what I believed in and that is what I did. As far as I was concerned, the order could not only have come from Police Headquarters, there must have been political Heads as well. There was a State Security Council where these things must have been discussed. So what I'm saying is that they had the responsibility and yet I have not heard a single politician who has come here and said, "Yes, I'm aware of it and I approved of these acts."

MR MALAN: Mr Prinsloo, you have also been involved in other applications and that's the reason for my question. The politicians say that they took these decisions, or the policemen senior to yourself.


MR MALAN: And they said they were not aware of any political approval regarding these acts etcetera, that you also heard, that testimony. In other words that is - and now I get back to the question that the Chairperson put to you. On what level could this decision have been taken? You say you don't know. You said that in the Free State, perhaps on the level of Mr Coetzee, without having to revert to higher authority or perhaps other things had to go to higher authority, it all depended on the gravity the particular order.

MR PRINSLOO: Yes but the question was put to me, "What rank did you have to achieve before you could do X, Y, Z?" So I'm saying that what we're here concerned with is the Hani period and then my later career and it depended on the profile of the person. There was a general code or guidelines laid down, I don't want to say - yes, a policy, that certain things could be done, that it was permissible. So my impression was that these things came from higher up.

MR MALAN: Yes, I accept that.

MR PRINSLOO: So that's the milieu. I as an individual never took that decision all by myself and said right, I am now saying that so and so has to be eliminated ...(intervention)

MR MALAN: No, Mr Prinsloo, you don't understand my question. If I don't accept your word that it was your impression, then from my side you wouldn't qualify for amnesty. You must understand that very clearly. What I find very strange is that on the one hand you're saying that, "We kept the National Party in power but they used and abused us to stay in power, but at the point when they decided no longer to stay in power we became really angry with them because they were just giving away on a platter everything we stood for." I'm putting it to you that I find it very strange. You're finding it hard to explain the matter to me in a way that I can understand, but I don't think it's really relevant and I did say I don't want to waste too much time.

MR PRINSLOO: Chairperson, can I just comment please. What I said was, what I find strange and what I can't understand and the reason why I say I feel betrayed is that political decisions were taken on a high level ...(intervention)

MR MALAN: You assume that, you don't know that.

MR PRINSLOO: Yes, I'm assuming that. And that political responsibility is not properly accepted and assumed and it's the foot-soldier who now has to pay and to take responsibility which should by rights be the responsibility of the politicians.

CHAIRPERSON: In other words with the exception of Mr Vlok and so on, nobody else has said politicians have said, "Look, we accept that we could have at least created the impression that it was alright to do these things"?

MR PRINSLOO: That's correct, that's what I'm trying to say. That's why I feel betrayed. That's the point I'm trying to make. It's not the giving away of the country, that's not what I'm referring to.

CHAIRPERSON: A lot of the policemen say that, how would that have made a difference? Say FW de Klerk had come and said, "Look I accept political responsibility and I accept that all the policemen who had committed murder etcetera, had the right to think that what they were doing was correct and right", how would that have helped you?

MR PRINSLOO: I think that that moral conviction which you had ...(intervention)

CHAIRPERSON: We're talking about murder.

MR PRINSLOO: I beg your pardon, Chairperson?

CHAIRPERSON: We're talking here of murder and I must say that murder and moral policy, those two are contradictions in ...(intervention)

MR PRINSLOO: No, you misunderstand me, what I said is that you had the moral conviction that what you were doing was right, you believed that you had the political backing for what you were doing ...(intervention)

CHAIRPERSON: And you believed that you had it at that stage in the past.

MR PRINSLOO: Yes, Chairperson, I didn't ...(intervention)

CHAIRPERSON: And it's not confirmed now.

MR PRINSLOO: I beg your pardon, Chairperson?

CHAIRPERSON: But it hasn't been confirmed at all at this stage?

MR PRINSLOO: Yes, and that's my point and that's why I'm saying that I, as an individual, feel betrayed. I would at least have expected, and I think it's history now, a matter of history that a person such as Kobie Coetzee, during the negotiations he could have dealt with the situation in a different way and he and the National Party preferred not to do it. Why didn't they make use of that opportunity? Because just in the same way as I am morally responsible for my acts, the enemy of yesterday, the ANC, is also morally responsible for his acts of the past. I think the difference is just that the ANC's leadership has, to some extent in any event, admitted responsibility and accepted responsibility, political responsibility. They said, "That was our objective, that's what we tried to achieve."

MR MALAN: Yes, but they didn't only admit it, it was a declared policy, they said it every single year in the press, but it wasn't the National Party's declared policy, it wasn't even its private policy in gossip halls, but you simply assumed and accepted that that was their thinking and I accept that you accepted that. Because certain things were done as you and other people have testified and we were never called to order, we were never disciplined. And most of the applications are based on that, that because we were not disciplined we thought it was good enough and so we continued.

MR PRINSLOO: Yes well that is what we believed, yes.

MR MALAN: But not that the National Party and its caucus made some decision and prepared a policy document to decide who could decide to murder people and on which level they could do so.

MR PRINSLOO: No, no, that's not what I said.

MR MALAN: Very well, thank you.

CHAIRPERSON: I think it would be better if all the applicants finish their testimony before we go to the witness.




--------------------------------------------------------------------------CHAIRPERSON: Mr Coetzee, which language would you prefer to use?

MR COETZEE: Afrikaans.

CHAIRPERSON: Do you have any objection to the taking of the oath?

E F COETZEE: (sworn states)

CHAIRPERSON: Please be seated.

EXAMINATION BY MR NORTIER: Mr Coetzee, your application is contained in this bundle and that is also your formal amnesty application. The facts of the incident are on page 2 to page 5 of this application, is that correct? And the political objectives are contained in Annexure B, pages 13 to 20. Is that correct?


MR NORTIER: I think we should immediately go to the fact of the particular incident. During 1980 you were the Divisional Commander of the Security Branch in the Orange Free State, is that correct?


MR NORTIER: And you were station in Bloemfontein.

MR COETZEE: That's correct.

MR NORTIER: According to your application you say that you were then a Colonel. You've heard the evidence of Mr Prinsloo, where he said that you were a Lieutenant-Colonel at that stage, do you want to comment?

MR COETZEE: It might be the case, usually we were just addressed as - whether you were Colonel or Lieutenant-Colonel, you were addressed as a Colonel.

MR NORTIER: Mr Prinsloo and Mr de Bruin who are co-applicants in this application, both served under your command.

MR COETZEE: Correct.

MR NORTIER: Take it from there please.


"The Security Branch was responsible for the gathering of intelligence regarding ANC/SACP alliance activities in Lesotho and informers were used for this purpose. All information was conveyed to the Security Headquarters, Pretoria for checking and possible verification.

During this period the deceased, Mr Chris Hani, was in Lesotho, he had fled to Lesotho. Informers constantly reported about his activities and it became clear that he was the pivot in the ANC/SACP activities."


CHAIRPERSON: You heard what Mr Prinsloo testified, Mr Coetzee, do you confirm what he said as far as you are concerned?


CHAIRPERSON: He testified that you called him and told him that a plan had to be made and he interpreted that to mean that you were telling him to eliminate Mr Hani.

MR COETZEE: That is correct.

CHAIRPERSON: I got the impression that he testified that you said that you had got that order from Headquarters.

MR COETZEE: That is correct.

CHAIRPERSON: Who gave you that order?

MR COETZEE: Chairperson, he eventually became General Viktor, but at that stage he was a Brigadier or a Colonel Viktor.

CHAIRPERSON: What was his name?

MR COETZEE: Gen Viktor, but at the time he was a Colonel or a Brigadier, but he was my senior and of course he was a Managing Member for Security Branch Headquarters.

CHAIRPERSON: Now what did that order entail?

MR COETZEE: As far as I can remember, Gen Viktor told me relating to the activities of Mr Hani, that a plan had to be made with this man because he was causing a lot of trouble in the Republic and he was in Lesotho, where we had no hold on him and he then asked me whether we could possibly make a plan and whether I had anybody that I could use who perhaps had the expertise or the ability to do it and I said yes, I can find out from Hendrik Prinsloo whether he could do anything about the matter.

CHAIRPERSON: Is that how you were asked, "Get somebody to make a plan with Mr Hani"?

MR COETZEE: Correct, yes.

CHAIRPERSON: What did that mean?

MR COETZEE: Well I inferred from that that as a result of Mr Hani's activities, Gen Viktor or Head Office or whoever, somebody in Head Office wanted a plan to be made with Mr Hani to eliminate him, to kill him.

CHAIRPERSON: Why do you make such an inference? Why did you come to this conclusion?

MR COETZEE: Well it was by virtue of our discussion.

CHAIRPERSON: Why didn't he just tell you directly, "Get somebody to kill the man" or "Eliminate the man"?

MR COETZEE: Well I don't know, that was the way we used to talk in those days. Security people used to talk in those terms.

CHAIRPERSON: Yes ja, we know, we see that each an every day, this code language and cryptic communications. I wish we could just understand a little bit more about it. In any event you say that you interpreted that to mean elimination and you then contacted Mr Prinsloo in that regard.


CHAIRPERSON: And he made the preparations.

MR COETZEE: Yes, he made the preparations and reported back to me.

CHAIRPERSON: Yes, that's what I wanted to ask, did he inform you?

MR COETZEE: Yes, he informed me as to what was going to be done.

CHAIRPERSON: Did you agree with that?

MR COETZEE: Yes, I did.

CHAIRPERSON: He also said that you told him that he should contact Mr Viktor regarding this matter.

MR COETZEE: Yes, I'm going to refer to him as Col Viktor, that was the information or the order that we should go to Viktor in Pretoria to report back to him, and that is what he did.

CHAIRPERSON: Anything else?

MR COETZEE: And he then came back to me and reported to me that Col Viktor had told him that a plan must be made with Hani, and I then told him he should go to Mr de Bruin. Mr de Bruin was the handler of an informer who reported about Hani. I knew that because all the reports from Lesotho had to go via myself, so I knew that he had an informer who was reporting about Hani.

MR NORTIER: Could I just hear from you, was it considered at all to arrest Hani and bring him to court by lawful means?

MR COETZEE: Yes, attempts were made to try and lure him by means of informers to come back to the RSA, to the Republic, but these attempts were not successful.

MR NORTIER: So you say that pressure was exerted on you, that's on page 4 at the top, you say that you were pressurised into making a plan to cause him to stop his activities. Can you perhaps just give us more information as to where this pressure came from?

MR COETZEE: The pressure came from Security Headquarters where all the reports were processed and then disseminated throughout the whole Republic, and as Mr Prinsloo also testified, National Intelligence, Military Intelligence, ourselves and all the Security Branches along the border and even away from the border, gave reports regarding Mr Hani's activities and we felt that it was time to do something because these activities were being stepped up and the threat was actually escalating.

Now there was no way to negotiate with Mr Hani ...(intervention)

MR NORTIER: If I can just interrupt you there for a moment. After this incident or after it came to your attention that the attack had been unsuccessful, did you report back on this matter to Brigadier or Gen Viktor?

MR COETZEE: Yes, I reported it to Viktor.

MR NORTIER: Alright. The informer, Mr Ramatolo, was at that stage in custody, is that correct? And you also say in your application that bail had been arranged for him. Could you please just elaborate, who was responsible for arranging bail for the informer?

MR COETZEE: Yes, Ramatolo was in custody, he'd been seriously injured, he was in hospital under police guard and we realised that if the matter came before a Lesotho court, it would be a great embarrassment for the government and if he revealed anything about this operation, it would be a big problem for the government and we also realised that he was in danger of serving a long term of imprisonment if he was convicted on the charge on which he was arraigned. And the third reason was, we felt that we had a moral duty to make some plan with the informer to actually get him out of Lesotho, to indemnify him against these things, these possible things which I've just outlined.

MR NORTIER: If I can just interrupt you. Who actually paid the bail money, who provided the bail money?

MR COETZEE: This was done by Security Branch Headquarters. I can't remember whether the authorisation was given that it be paid by my secret fund or whether the amount was paid directly by Head Office.

MR NORTIER: Head Office, did they approve the payment of this amount? Did they know for whom this amount was to be used and what this person had done?


MR NORTIER: You then contacted the informer at some point, is that correct?

MR COETZEE: Yes, we arranged a meeting and the informer was discharged from hospital and he appeared in court. After his bail had been paid, I think it was at his second appearance in court bail was paid and I, by means of W/O de Bruin, made an arrangement for a rendezvous with this informer, since Security Headquarters had given me the order that we should bring the man to Pretoria where he should be used and employed as an askari.

MR NORTIER: It states that during this meeting a discussion was held with the informer, that there may be a possible embarrassment for the South African Government and that it might be more advisable for him not to attend the hearing.

MR COETZEE: I put it to him and he agreed to this voluntarily, but he also stated that there were a number of things that he had to finish or conclude in Lesotho and that afterwards he would return to the RSA, as we did. This indeed took place. I did not see him again. He was taken to Pretoria where he was employed at Vlakplaas, as far as I know.

I can also state that he came through the river every time and not via the border post, because he was still out on bail.

MR NORTIER: And with regard to the objectives, the objectives that you dealt with, is it correct that it is embodied in Annexure B to your application?

MR COETZEE: Yes, that is correct.

MR NORTIER: And do you request that Annexure B be included with your application?


MR NORTIER: You also state in Annexure B that there was a submission made by Gen van der Merwe, do you also request that that submission made by Gen van der Merwe, be incorporated with your application?

MR COETZEE: That is correct.

MR NORTIER: The general background to amnesty applications which is Exhibit A before this Committee, have you had sight of this document?

MR COETZEE: Yes, I have.

MR NORTIER: Do you also request that this document be incorporated with your application?

MR COETZEE: Yes, that is correct.

MR NORTIER: Mr Coetzee, this particular deed which you committed, was it for your own personal gain?

MR COETZEE: No, definitely not.

MR NORTIER: Did you commit this deed due to any feelings of malice or vengeance towards the intended victim?


MR NORTIER: Do you then apply for amnesty today for the following possible offences, namely attempted murder of Chris Hani?


MR NORTIER: Attempted murder of an unknown person?

MR COETZEE: Correct.

MR NORTIER: Conspiracy to murder Chris Hani?

MR COETZEE: Correct.

MR NORTIER: Conspiracy to murder an unknown person?

MR COETZEE: Correct.

MR NORTIER: Intentional damage of property?

MR COETZEE: Correct.

MR NORTIER: Conspiracy to commit intentional damage of property?

MR COETZEE: Correct.

MR NORTIER: You also apply for any offences with regard to the Explosives Act?

MR COETZEE: That is correct.

MR NORTIER: Defeating the ends of justice?

MR COETZEE: That is correct.

MR NORTIER: Conspiracy to commit defeating the ends of justice?

MR COETZEE: That is correct.

MR NORTIER: Any other offence which may emanate from the facts pertaining to this case?

MR COETZEE: That is correct.

MR NORTIER: Any delictual liability which may emanate from the facts?

MR COETZEE: That is correct.

MR NORTIER: That is the evidence-in-chief of the applicant, Mr Coetzee.


MS VAN DER WALT: I have no questions, thank you.


MR PRINSLOO: No questions, thank you Chair.



Mr Coetzee, now from the evidence that we've heard so far, I understand that if there were any question of money to be paid to an informer, you would be the person in control, is that correct?

MR COETZEE: Yes that is correct, Chairperson, the monthly claims which were instated for informers would have had to be approved by me and sent through to Head Office and then it would be paid out to the particular informer.

MR RICHARD: Do you recall any arrangements to pay money to Mr Ramatolo?

MR COETZEE: No, I do not.

MR RICHARD: Do you recall any monies ever being paid to him?

MR COETZEE: Yes. Let me just rectify that, I think he was paid on a monthly basis. He received those monies, but pertaining to this particular incident I do not know what compensation he received, if any, because he was out of my hands, he was transferred.

MR RICHARD: When you say monthly remuneration, what would that entail, how much and ...?

MR COETZEE: Well it's difficult for me to say after 20 years exactly what he was paid every month, but he was indeed paid every month because he was a registered informer.

MR RICHARD: Now when did you first become aware of Mr Ramatolo's existence?

MR COETZEE: As a person I never knew him, I simply knew him as a number. The only time that I had a meeting with him was on the day when we met him at the banks of the Caledon and a discussion was held with him regarding the possibility of his defection to the RSA.

MR MALAN: Mr Richard, is there anything in dispute of the evidence of Mr Coetzee? And if not so, won't you just put the version to him where you have a version which you would want him to comment on, please.

MR RICHARD: Was there any arrangement for him, or reason for him to expect to be paid for the murder of Chris Hani?

MR COETZEE: Not as far as I know.

MR RICHARD: Is it possible that anyone might have promised him money?

MR COETZEE: Yes, that is a possibility, but I do not know about it.

MR RICHARD: Could a promise have been made without your authority?

MR COETZEE: As I've stated, it is possible but I have no knowledge of it.

MR RICHARD: Now do you know of any conspiracy to murder Mr Hani, apart from the bomb, during the period that you were in control?

MR COETZEE: No, I cannot recall anything such as that during my period of tenure.

MR RICHARD: Now you heard what was said earlier when I put various propositions regarding the idea to commit the assassination with a pistol while Mr Hani was walking or running in and around Maseru or Lesotho. Do you know anything of that?

MR COETZEE: No I don't know about it, but it is possible, because I'm sure that attempts were made to conduct the operation in another way. I believe that there may be something like that.

MR RICHARD: But it wouldn't have required your specific authority?

MR COETZEE: No, as I've stated the entire matter emanated from Head Office. I could not take something like that upon myself.

MR RICHARD: Did you play any role in the choice of Mr Ramatolo as the person to do the assassination?

MR COETZEE: No, Chairperson.

MR RICHARD: No further questions.


CHAIRPERSON: Why wouldn't you pay a person under those circumstances?

MR COETZEE: I beg your pardon, Chairperson?

CHAIRPERSON: Why wouldn't you have paid the man if you had asked him to commit murder?

MR COETZEE: As I have stated, he was paid a monthly fee for information that he provided, but with regard to the incident itself, I don't know anything about his payment or whether or not he was paid because he was handed over by Mr de Bruin, Mr de Bruin took him to Pretoria. I don't know what happened at that stage, afterwards.

CHAIRPERSON: If he were to have been paid, where would the money have come from?

MR COETZEE: Security Head Office.

CHAIRPERSON: Head Office, not from your coffers?

MR COETZEE: No, not from our branch.

MS CAMBANIS: Nothing, thank you.


ADV STEENKAMP: Nothing thank you, Mr Chairman.



MR COETZEE: Thank you, Chair.


MR PRINSLOO: Chairperson, I call Mr de Bruin.




K J DE BRUIN: (sworn states)

CHAIRPERSON: Thank you, you may be seated.

MR PRINSLOO: Thank you, Chairperson.

INTERPRETER: The speaker's microphone is not on. The speaker cannot be heard, his microphone is not on.

MR NORTIER: He's from Somerset West in Cape Town and I understand from him that it is financially difficult for him to attend these proceedings. And as you have noted he is quite elderly. At this point I would like to clarify with you whether or not it is possible for him to be excused entirely at this point and whether he has the permission of this forum to do so.

CHAIRPERSON: Is there any person who is interested in this hearing who would object to my excusing him completely?

MS VAN DER WALT: There is no objection from my client.

MR PRINSLOO: No objection, thank you Chair.

MS CAMBANIS: No objection.

MR RICHARD: No objection.

ADV STEENKAMP: No objection, than you Honourable Chairman.

CHAIRPERSON: ...(unidentified speaker)

MR NORTIER: Thank you very much, Chairperson.

MR COETZEE: Thank you, Chairperson.

EXAMINATION BY MR PRINSLOO: Thank you, Chair. I will then lead the evidence of Mr de Bruin.

Mr de Bruin, your application is embodied in the bundle, the formal section is from page 21 to 27 and then the description of the incident is from page 28 to 32 and your political motivation from page 33 to 40 of the bundle, do you confirm this?

MR DE BRUIN: Yes, that is correct.

CHAIRPERSON: Mr Steenkamp, has Mr Viktor been informed of the fact that he has been named in this incident?

ADV STEENKAMP: Indeed, I think there is another person - Gen Viktor is the client of Mr Wagener, who attended the pre-trial conference and there is a document, Annexure A, which was provided by him. I took the matter up with him personally and he told me that it would be his instructions that they would not be attending the hearing. Thank you, Chair.

MR PRINSLOO: Thank you, Chairperson.

Mr de Bruin, you've heard the evidence which was given by the first applicant, Mr H J Prinsloo, as well as that of the former Divisional Commander, Coetzee.

MR DE BRUIN: That is correct.

MR PRINSLOO: And do you confirm that evidence?

MR DE BRUIN: That is correct, Chairperson.

MR PRINSLOO: Briefly, you were the handler of the person who is referred to as Mr Ramatolo, the former informer.

MR DE BRUIN: That is correct.

MR PRINSLOO: And you handled him for a period of time and before that period he was handled by another person.

MR DE BRUIN: That is correct.

MR PRINSLOO: And the person who handled him before you, is he still alive?

MR DE BRUIN: No, he is deceased.

MR PRINSLOO: Mr de Bruin, in as far as it concerned the action itself, was this an arrangement which was made by your colleague, Mr Prinsloo?

MR DE BRUIN: Correct.

MR PRINSLOO: With your knowledge?

MR DE BRUIN: That is correct.

MR PRINSLOO: And did you associate yourself with the action?

MR DE BRUIN: That is correct.

MR PRINSLOO: Because you were aware of the fact that Mr Hani would be eliminated by means of an explosive device.

MR DE BRUIN: That is correct, Chairperson.

MR PRINSLOO: And under the circumstances you foresaw that he could be killed, as well as anybody else who was travelling in the vehicle with him, who could also be killed or seriously injured, as well as the fact that the vehicle could be seriously damaged during the incident.

MR DE BRUIN: That is correct.

MR PRINSLOO: And did you allow this action to take place for personal gain at any stage?


MR PRINSLOO: Did you act on behalf of the South African Police Services at that stage?

MR DE BRUIN: That is correct.

MR PRINSLOO: And due to your actions you realised that you were guilty of conspiracy to murder at that stage?

MR DE BRUIN: Correct.

MR PRINSLOO: Damage to property?

MR DE BRUIN: That is correct.

MR PRINSLOO: And then subsequently defeating the ends of justice because you did not disclose the facts of the matter.

MR DE BRUIN: That is correct.

MR PRINSLOO: Under the circumstances then, do you apply for amnesty for the deeds as I have set them out: Conspiracy to murder; Attempted murder of Mr Hani as well as the unknown person in the vehicle with him; Damage to property and the offence pertaining to explosives, because you knew that explosives would be handled illegally.

MR DE BRUIN: That is correct.

MR PRINSLOO: And then there is also any further delictual liability which may emanate from the facts of this case.

MR DE BRUIN: That is correct.

MR PRINSLOO: And after Mr Ramatolo was injured, as you have already heard - I just want to take this up with you very briefly, you made arrangements for a meeting with him, by means of his sister. Is that correct?

MR DE BRUIN: Chairperson, his sister came to me and said that her brother, Mr Ramatolo was in hospital, that he had been injured after the explosion and that he was being guarded at that stage.

MR PRINSLOO: Very well. And was a meeting them arranged?

MR DE BRUIN: Please repeat.

MR PRINSLOO: And ultimately a meeting took place between you and Mr Ramatolo, is that correct?


MR PRINSLOO: Was that at the Caledon River?

MR DE BRUIN: That is correct.

MR PRINSLOO: And did Mr Ramatolo come out and was he taken to Pretoria?

MR DE BRUIN: Yes, and he was taken to Pretoria. That is correct.

MR PRINSLOO: And with regard to the payment of informers' fees, did you pay his fee to him or what was the position?

MR DE BRUIN: Chairperson, he was remunerated according to the services that he rendered on a monthly basis.

MR PRINSLOO: Did you promise him a taxi at any point?

MR DE BRUIN: No, Chairperson.

MR PRINSLOO: Did you promise him any money which would be related to this incident involving the attempted elimination of Mr Hani?


MR PRINSLOO: And do you know whether or not any monies were paid out by Head Office or any other person?

MR DE BRUIN: No, I cannot say whether or not he was rewarded by Head Office or any other agent.

MR PRINSLOO: Thank you, Chair, nothing further.


MR NORTIER: No questions on behalf of applicant Coetzee, thank you Chair.


MS VAN DER WALT: No questions thank you, Chairperson.


CROSS-EXAMINATION BY MR RICHARD: Thank you, Chairperson. Only a few questions.

On the question of money, if Mr Ramatolo gives evidence to the effect that he was never paid more than a number of amounts of R40/R50, would there be any serious dispute?

MR PRINSLOO: Just a moment Chairperson, it would appear as if there is a problem with the headset. Could the question be repeated please.

MR RICHARD: Certainly. If Mr Ramatolo gives evidence to the effect that he was never paid more than a few ad hoc amounts of R40/R50, would you dispute his evidence?

MR DE BRUIN: I only know of the monthly amount that he was paid, the monthly remuneration that he received for services rendered. That is what I do know of.

MR RICHARD: How much was that?

MR DE BRUIN: It varied, Chairperson, according to the information that he provided.

MR MALAN: Mr de Bruin, the statement was put that it was approximately R40 to R50.

MR DE BRUIN: Yes, that sounds correct.

MR RICHARD: And that wasn't paid every month either, if there was no information?

MR DE BRUIN: That is correct, Chairperson.

MR RICHARD: Now your counsel has asked the question, did you ever make any statements to the effect that the informer might expect a taxi in return for his information, did you ever lead him to believe that that might be a hope in the future?

MR DE BRUIN: No, Chairperson.

MR RICHARD: Was there ever any discussion about remuneration for the assassination of Mr Chris Hani?

MR DE BRUIN: No, Chairperson.

MR RICHARD: So you would deny that there was any indication that he might expect R5 000 or R6 000 in return for the job?

MR DE BRUIN: I don't know about that.

MR MALAN: Mr Richard, just before you leave that point.

Is it your evidence that Mr Ramatolo was prepared to murder Mr Hani for free, as a favour?

MR DE BRUIN: No remuneration or reward was discussed with him, none whatsoever.

MR MALAN: Perhaps an amount wasn't discussed, but you certainly must have accepted that he would be paid and paid handsomely.

MR DE BRUIN: No, that was never discussed.

MR MALAN: But it wasn't one of his services as an informer?

MR DE BRUIN: No, it wasn't one of his services as an informer, that is correct.

MR MALAN: Certainly you must have foreseen that he would have required payment.

MR DE BRUIN: I did not know anything about that, it was never discussed with him. It was never discussed that he would be rewarded more for performing such a task.

MR MALAN: Mr de Bruin, do you then maintain that it was definitely not discussed or that it was possibly discussed but that you cannot recall it?

MR DE BRUIN: ...(inaudible)

INTERPRETER: The speaker's microphone is not on.

MR DE BRUIN: It is possible that it may have been discussed, but it was never discussed in my presence.

CHAIRPERSON: Is that the proposition, that it was ...(intervention)

MR RICHARD: Mr Ramatolo will testify that it was discussed and there was an indication that ...(intervention)


MR RICHARD: With Mr de Bruin.

CHAIRPERSON: It is being put to you, Mr de Bruin, that it was actually discussed with you.

MR DE BRUIN: I have no knowledge of that.

CHAIRPERSON: Do you deny it?

MR DE BRUIN: Yes, I do.

MR MALAN: And did you hear Mr Prinsloo say that he thought that R5 000 to R6 000 for that period, with which one could purchase a taxi vehicle, sounded somewhat scant to him?

CHAIRPERSON: Perhaps the prices were lower at that stage.

MR MALAN: I will put it to you again, because I do not understand how you could get someone to act as an assassin because he wouldn't be doing it because he believed so much in the cause, he did it because he had information about it and then he would be doing it for free. Could you explain that to us?

MR DE BRUIN: As I have explained, I don't know if anybody else promised it to him, but I myself did not promise it to him.

MR MALAN: Well if somebody else promised it to him and it wasn't Mr Prinsloo, according to his information, who else could have promised it to him? Someone else at Ladybrand perhaps?

MR DE BRUIN: I cannot answer that question.

CHAIRPERSON: You were his handler?

MR DE BRUIN: Yes, that is correct.

CHAIRPERSON: Nobody else?

MR DE BRUIN: Not at that stage.

CHAIRPERSON: He was registered.

MR DE BRUIN: Yes, that is correct.

CHAIRPERSON: Under your name?

MR DE BRUIN: That is correct.

CHAIRPERSON: And you were the person who had to discuss money with him, isn't that so?

MR DE BRUIN: Yes, he was rewarded for the services that he rendered.

CHAIRPERSON: But you were his handler.

MR DE BRUIN: That is correct.

CHAIRPERSON: And anything that he could do or say, was done so with your approval, you had to be involved on that level.

MR DE BRUIN: Chairperson, as I have explained to you, according to the services rendered by him he would then be remunerated. I cannot tell you that I would have said that he would have received R10 000 or something like that.

CHAIRPERSON: No, listen to the question. Mr Prinsloo also testified, and it was not taken up with him and I will accept that what he has stated is the truth, he states that everything that he did with the informer was done in your presence.

MR DE BRUIN: That is correct.

CHAIRPERSON: Everything that he discussed with him was discussed with him in your presence.

MR DE BRUIN: That is correct.

CHAIRPERSON: And I can understand that because you were the handler of that informer.

MR DE BRUIN: That is correct.

MR RICHARD: And as I have learnt recently, policemen who dealt with informers were rather proud of it and nobody interfered with their relationships, isn't that so?


CHAIRPERSON: It was like that at that point.

MR DE BRUIN: Yes, that is correct.

CHAIRPERSON: Now R50 or R60 or whatever the amount was on a monthly basis for information was the payment for an informer who provided information. He was asked in your presence to do somewhat more than the mere delivery of information, he was asked to kill a man. More than this, he was also asked to kill a person who was globally known. All of us know that if he had been killed at that point in time, the whole world would have had problems, isn't that so?

MR DE BRUIN: That is correct.

CHAIRPERSON: Then under those circumstances, would the man then be convinced if asked to kill Chris Hani, would he be convinced that he should do so?

MR DE BRUIN: But that's what he said, he said that he would do it for us.

CHAIRPERSON: Is there any manner which was used to persuade him?

MR DE BRUIN: No, not that I was aware of.

CHAIRPERSON: Because I find it difficult to accept that somebody would kill anybody and especially Chris Hani, for nothing. Furthermore, he was not a South African citizen.

MR DE BRUIN: That is correct.

CHAIRPERSON: Certainly then he would have wanted payment.

MR DE BRUIN: As I have already stated, I do not know of any promises. I didn't make him any promises of any sort. I did not indicate to him that he would be paid more for doing the job.

CHAIRPERSON: But that's what he states.

MR DE BRUIN: I do not know anything about it.

MR MALAN: You say that he was paid based upon the information that he provided, it wasn't a fixed amount, it varied from month to month.

MR DE BRUIN: That is correct.

MR MALAN: I think that the amount was about R40 to R50 and this could have varied.

MR DE BRUIN: That is correct.

MR MALAN: And when you asked him to kill Hani, it would also have been a service that he rendered to you. I'm asking you a question, answer it. Would it have been a service?

MR DE BRUIN: That is correct.

MR MALAN: And if he had delivered the service, at the end of that month you would have decided what you were going to pay him.

MR DE BRUIN: No, he didn't decide.

MR MALAN: What I've said is that you would decide.

MR DE BRUIN: That is correct.

MR MALAN: If he had done it, would you have paid him more or less?

MR DE BRUIN: He would have been paid more. He would be paid for the service that he rendered.

MR MALAN: And if you say that he would have received more, what do you think he would have received?

MR DE BRUIN: I cannot tell you, it may have been more.

CHAIRPERSON: More than R100?

MR DE BRUIN: It could have been more than R100.

CHAIRPERSON: A R100 is more than R50.


CHAIRPERSON: But we are talking about a man's life.

MR DE BRUIN: It may have been more than that.


MR MALAN: If he was under the impression that he would received R6 000, do you think that it is too little? Do you think that it would have been an unreasonable expectation of his to take out this man in the ANC, who was really causing trouble for the government, do you think that the amount was too little?

MR DE BRUIN: Possibly.

MR MALAN: Well if that was his expectation, wouldn't he have formulated an opinion on this at some point?

MR DE BRUIN: He may have formulated an opinion, but I never promised him that that would be the amount. No specific amount was ever promised to him.

MR MALAN: Because he said R6 000 or a taxi and if I recall the motor vehicle prices of that time, in 1980 you could purchase a good taxi brand new, for R6 000 and that would balance more-or-less.

MR DE BRUIN: As I've stated, I don't know anything about it.

CHAIRPERSON: Without weapons.

MR MALAN: Yes, without a weapon. Very well, no further questions from my side. Thank you, Chair.

MR RICHARD: Thank you.

Just a point of clarification. For how long did Mr Ramatolo act as your informer?

MR DE BRUIN: I worked with him for approximately 18 months.

MR RICHARD: So that would be from approximately 1978, would it not?

MR DE BRUIN: More-or-less, yes.

MR RICHARD: Now Mr Ramatolo will say when he first started informing for you his expectation was that out of that activity he would make enough to buy a taxi and then he dropped off and stopped servicing you as you might have wanted, and then separately from the first discussion, the figure of R5 000 or R6 000 was debated for the murder of Mr Hani.

MR DE BRUIN: No, Chairperson, I'm not aware of that.

MR RICHARD: Now ...(intervention)

MR MALAN: Sorry Mr Richard, let me just get clarity in my mind, will Mr Ramatolo's evidence be - is this what I hear you to say, that when he started to work, giving information, his expectation was that as a result of this activity, through what he will be paid monthly, he will be able to buy a taxi? Isn't that different from what you put to the other witness? To Mr Prinsloo you said that he would get either a taxi or R6 000.

MR RICHARD: I did not put that to Mr Prinsloo, I made the point of separating the two and it's this witness that is now compressing the two events into one.

MR MALAN: I'm saying how I understood you as ...(indistinct), but that's indeed now not the case?

MR RICHARD: That is not the case.

Now ...(intervention)

CHAIRPERSON: Mr Richard, then I'm bothered. For the whole period now that you're cross-examining all three applicants, it was put to them that for killing Chris Hani he would receive R6 000 or a taxi.

MR RICHARD: I did not put that to him, I dispute that. I said a taxi for informing and an amount of R5 000 or R6 000 for the killing, or, if I recall my words, an amount equivalent to a taxi for the informing in the past. All the witnesses denied any knowledge of the discussion, so I never pursued it further if I recall correctly Chairperson. If I've created a misimpression, I apologise therefore, I do not want to misquote my instructions.

Now I've also put another point that Mr Ramatolo wishes to make in evidence, that the idea of putting a bomb under Mr Hani's car was not the only time that the killing of Mr Hani was discussed, that prior thereto he was taken for training with a Makarov pistol and taught how to shoot it. Do you recall any such incident?

MR DE BRUIN: No, Chairperson, I'm not aware of that.

MR RICHARD: And do you recall him reporting back to you that he hadn't carried out the plan?

MR DE BRUIN: No, Chairperson, I'm not aware of that.

MR RICHARD: And do you recall any discussions to the effect that when it came to the bombing, "either you do it today or you don't"? Do you recall ever saying any words to that effect to Mr Ramatolo at any stage?

MR DE BRUIN: No, Chairperson.

MR RICHARD: Now if Mr Ramatolo had chosen to stop working for the Security Forces or the Security Police, whatever, and became an unreliable person, what might have happened to him?

MR DE BRUIN: Nothing would have happened to him.

MR RICHARD: If you received information that he might divulge his activities to the ANC or the Lesotho authorities, what might have you done?

MR DE BRUIN: We would not have done anything to him.

CHAIRPERSON: What has that got to do with the price of eggs, Mr Richard?

MR RICHARD: The price of eggs in this relation is that there was intimidation of Mr Ramatolo to some extent, that he didn't have the option to simply drop off the informing operation. The witness has denied that there was any such ...(intervention)

CHAIRPERSON: But that's not the question here, the question is how the attempted murder of Mr Hani occurred.

MR RICHARD: Mr Hani's evidence ...(intervention)

CHAIRPERSON: ...(indistinct - no microphone) that your witness, your client, was forced to indulge in the attempted murder of Mr Hani.

MR RICHARD: I did not put that proposition. I'm not putting that proposition. The question that I put, which I've had answered, is a straightforward proposition. If Mr Ramatolo had become a threat, what would have happened to him? The answer has been "nothing." I leave the point.

CHAIRPERSON: Carry on then, whatever else you want to raise.

MR RICHARD: I believe those are the only points on which my client's evidence might differ from what has been said.


MS CAMBANIS: No questions, thank you Chair.


ADV STEENKAMP: No questions, Honourable Chairperson.


CHAIRPERSON: Thank you, you are excused.

MR DE BRUIN: Thank you, Chairperson.


CHAIRPERSON: Is that all evidence that the applicants want to...

MS VAN DER WALT: That is all the evidence.

MR PRINSLOO: That is the evidence for the applicant.

MR NORTIER: Yes, that's the evidence for the applicant, Coetzee.

CHAIRPERSON: Then we get to the implicated person.

MR RICHARD: Thank you. May he be sworn.

CHAIRPERSON: Mr Ramatolo, what language would you prefer to use?

MR RAMATOLO: I prefer to use Sesotho.

CHAIRPERSON: Have you any objections to the taking of the oath?

ERNEST RAMATOLO: (sworn states)

EXAMINATION BY MR RICHARD: Thank you, Mr Ramatolo.

You've been present today and you've heard the three applicants give evidence, have you not?

MR RAMATOLO: That is correct.

MR RICHARD: And you've heard the interpretation through the earphones?


MR RICHARD: Thank you. Now apart from some points which I am going to come to, do you in the main, confirm their evidence? I will come to the exceptions.

MR RAMATOLO: Yes, in general. There are points up to where I agree with their evidence and some points I do not agree.

MR RICHARD: Now the principle points, if I may list them and deal with them in seriatim, is firstly the money. Now for how long did you inform from Mr Prinsloo? Mr de Bruin, sorry.

MR RAMATOLO: In 1978 I was being approached by a person who was working with Mr de Bruin, and his name was Mogomo.

MR RICHARD: Carry on.

MR RAMATOLO: The information he informed me they would want from me - you see it's because I had a taxi, now they wanted to know - and there was no flight then from Lesotho to other countries, now these people made use of hired taxis. Now they wanted me to take them ...(intervention)

MR MALAN: Sorry for the interruption. Mr Ramatolo, the Interpreters are telling us that you are switching from one language to another, will you stay with Sesotho, so they can follow the evidence and interpret to us please.


MR MALAN: You may proceed, Mr Richard.

MR RICHARD: Thank you. Now my question was, during that period, from 1978 - to cut it short, you performed certain functions, one was to inform. Yes or no?

MR RAMATOLO: Exactly. Yes.

MR RICHARD: Now when it comes to the question of money, what was the understanding between yourself and Mr de Bruin?

MR RAMATOLO: Mr de Bruin was not yet involved, he was not yet dealing with me straight. He was not dealing directly with me, there was a person dealing with me. This person was working with Mr de Bruin.

CHAIRPERSON: Mr Ramatolo, I don't think we need to know the whole history of your relationship with Mr de Bruin. By 1980, were you an informer to the Security Police of the South African Police?


CHAIRPERSON: And you were being handled by Mr de Bruin?

MR RAMATOLO: For a very short period in relation to this murder, but before this incident somebody else handled me.


MR RICHARD: Chairperson, I think if I may be permitted to ask a slightly leading question, it might circumvent it.

When you were an informer and before the assassination of the late Chris Hani was discussed, did you believe that you would make enough to buy a taxi out of your informing activities?

MR RAMATOLO: It was in 1978 when I was promised that as long as my information is good, I will receive a kombi. That was in 1978.

MR RICHARD: Did you ever receive a kombi?


MR RICHARD: What did you receive?

MR RAMATOLO: It was a little amount, just for petrol, R30/R40.

MR RICHARD: How often?

MR MALAN: Just before you proceed. In other words, Mr de Bruin never talked to you about a kombi, it was the person before him that spoke to you about a taxi?

MR RAMATOLO: That is correct, Sir.

MR MALAN: Thank you.

MR RICHARD: Now how often did you receive that? One a month, once a week, two months?

MR RAMATOLO: Once in two months. It only depended on the information I gave them, how strong the information was.

MR RICHARD: Now who discussed the assassination of Mr Hani with you first?

MR RAMATOLO: Mr de Bruin came to me and he asked whether I knew Martin. He put it rightly, he said Martin Hani.


MR RAMATOLO: Between 19 ...(intervention)

MR RICHARD: My question was very simple. Who discussed the assassination of Mr Hani first with you? It was Mr de Bruin. That's your answer. Now did you discuss money?

MR RAMATOLO: It's Mr de Bruin and Mr Prinsloo.

MR RICHARD: And what was discussed?

MR RAMATOLO: We discussed the assassination of Chris.

MR RICHARD: Was money discussed?

MR RAMATOLO: Yes, the money was also discussed. Mr Prinsloo said "What about R3 000?" And I said to him "No, it's too little. And he said "R6 000?" And I said "Okay."

MR RICHARD: And then at that stage how ...(intervention)

CHAIRPERSON: Did you tell your Advocate or your attorney that it was Mr Prinsloo that raised the possibility of R6 000 being paid to you?

MR RAMATOLO: I believe so, because Mr Prinsloo discussed this in the presence of Mr de Bruin.

CHAIRPERSON: No, I'm not asking what you believe, I'm asking what happened. Did you tell your representative that in fact the person who raised the payment with you was in fact Mr Prinsloo and you negotiated with him?

MR RAMATOLO: I told him.

MR RICHARD: You told me that - so this price of R6 000, R5 000 to R6 000, like you and I discussed, was discussed between you and Mr Prinsloo, is that correct?


MR RICHARD: And when you hear Mr Prinsloo and Mr de Bruin give evidence that this wasn't discussed, what do you say in reply to their evidence?

MR RAMATOLO: Shall I respond by asking a question? How could be offered money for providing information regarding pamphlets and not be given money for eliminating somebody's life?

MR RICHARD: Thank you. So you are certain that for the assassination of Mr Hani you were offered R5 000 to R6 000?

MR RAMATOLO: Very well so.

MR RICHARD: Now my next question was, how many ways of assassinating Mr Hani were discussed?

MR RAMATOLO: Two ways were discussed. The first was through the use of a firearm and if that method was not successful, then the bomb would be resorted to.

MR RICHARD: Now what attempts were made to use a firearm?

MR RAMATOLO: I think twice I went back to report that I do not find him.

MR RICHARD: Now before you went to go with the firearm, did anyone give you a firearm or did you get trained with a firearm?

MR RAMATOLO: I was taken to Bloemfontein by Mr de Bruin and we met with Mr Prinsloo. They took me to a place like a shooting range. Now this other person showed me how to shoot.

MR RICHARD: For how long were you trained with the firearm?

MR RAMATOLO: 45 minutes.

MR RICHARD: Now you've heard the evidence put before the Committee this afternoon, you've heard both witnesses deny that you were trained with a firearm, do you have anything to say to that?

MR RAMATOLO: Let them deny, but that is so.

MR RICHARD: Right. Now you said before I cut your short, that you went ...(intervention)

MR MALAN: Just before you proceed, Mr Richard.

Your evidence was that another person gave you training in the handling of a firearm, who was that person?

MR RAMATOLO: That is correct, but I do not know him. It was myself and Mr Prinsloo and Mr de Bruin and that person was showing me how to shoot. We were in Bloemfontein.

MR MALAN: And for 45 minutes you were shown by this third person?


MR MALAN: And Mr Prinsloo and Mr de Bruin were standing by?


MR MALAN: For the full 45 minutes?


MR MALAN: Thank you. You may proceed, Mr Richard.

MR RICHARD: Now after you were trained, did anyone give you a firearm?

MR RAMATOLO: Not immediately, I think it was after a day or so, Mr Prinsloo presented me with a firearm. We were now in Ladybrand.

MR RICHARD: And did you ever attempt to use that firearm to assassinate Mr Hani?


MR RICHARD: Did you ever carry that firearm in your possession and go and look for Mr Hani?

MR RAMATOLO: Even when I was arrested the firearm was with me.

MR RICHARD: And before that?

MR RAMATOLO: I was told that he likes exercising and it was in Winter and I was told that was the time I could get hold of him. Mr Prinsloo had already prepared the gun, mine was just to press, but I could not. I did not have the bravery to do it.

MR RICHARD: Did you ever take the firearm, put it in your pocket and go and look for Mr Hani? Yes or no?


MR RICHARD: Did you ever see Mr Hani?

MR RAMATOLO: Very well.

MR RICHARD: You did?

MR RAMATOLO: Very well.

MR RICHARD: Now when you saw Mr Hani and you had the firearm in your possession, did you take it out, or didn't you?


MR RICHARD: Why not?

MR RAMATOLO: I did not have the courage to do it.

MR RICHARD: Now how often did you not have the courage to do it?

MR RAMATOLO: It was the first time when I met him and I had the firearm with me, but the second day I did not see him.

MR RICHARD: Did you report that to Mr de Bruin?

MR RAMATOLO: I went to Ladybrand to report to them.

MR RICHARD: And what did they say?

MR RAMATOLO: They said they should come up with the other plan.

MR RICHARD: Now you've heard their evidence regarding the other plan, you agree that their evidence is not in dispute, with the bomb, it happened like they said?

MR RAMATOLO: Yes, but there is something that they left.

MR RICHARD: The thing that they differ with your version is the length of the training with the bomb. You say they trained you for 45 minutes, the evidence today was that they were training you for about three hours. Which is correct?

MR MALAN: Sorry Mr Richard, just before you proceed, there's no evidence yet that he's training on the planting and detonation of the bomb took 45 minutes, the 45 minutes relates to the training in the use of the firearm.

MR RICHARD: My question to him was, "You've heard the evidence relating to the alternative plan, that is the plan of the bomb, do you confirm that version with ..." And I was dealing with the exceptions. Where we had got to if I understood the witness correctly, was yes, he confirms it and now he was going to deal with the exceptions.

MR MALAN: I heard you stating it to him that his evidence was that the training on the bomb was for 45 minutes, whereas their evidence was that it was for three hours.

MR RICHARD: Correct.

MR MALAN: Now the point I'm putting to you is that his evidence about his training on the attaching and the detonation of the bomb, has not been covered in his evidence. Don't you want to cover that first?

MR RICHARD: Allow me, Chairperson.

For how long were you trained to use the bomb and to plant the bomb?

MR RAMATOLO: It will be difficult to specify time. He did show me but it was - yes, it's true, he used a dead bomb on a different car and I was taken again to be shown the real car, as to where I will place this thing. Now we did not have a bomb at that time. We were at the garage. Now I don't know when one puts together all the minutes, how much they will amount to.

MR RICHARD: Did you tell me it was about 45 minutes?

MR RAMATOLO: Possibly, yes.

MR RICHARD: Could it be longer or shorter?

MR RAMATOLO: Even shorter than that, because he only said "This is how it looks like, there's a wire here, you will put it somewhere and then this must be put to the tyre. Will you do it?" Then that was that.

MR RICHARD: Now you've their evidence this afternoon regarding the planting of the bomb ...(indistinct) on and what was done, do you confirm what they said, with the exception of the length of time of training?

MR RAMATOLO: I did not understand Mr Prinsloo's evidence, but well, I can exactly tell you what happened that the explosion went off.

MR RICHARD: What I'm saying is you've heard the version that has been given about how you took the bomb into Lesotho and planted the bomb, do you disagree with what Mr Prinsloo and Mr de Bruin had said?

MR RAMATOLO: No, I agree with them, yes. The bomb was placed in the car and I was given the car and I left. And it was their car, not my car.

MR RICHARD: Now what you're trying to say is that in the end the bomb didn't go off as planned. Would you please tell us what happened. What happened?

MR RAMATOLO: I was told to place the bomb under the seat of the Stanza. The Stanza had an open place underneath the seat where a person could place it and it was easy to place it there. And I had a wire that I had to connect to the shock absorbers and I had to put this on the wheel, but I was told not to tighten the wire, so that it could not move. Now this little thing that I was going to put on the wheel had something like a bubblegum, something like putty. But when I arrived there the dogs disturbed me, but I reported to them first about the dogs and they also gave me advices as to how I could go about without the dogs seeing me.

Now what I did not manage to do was to connect this up to the shock absorbers, but I did manage to plug it, but it refused to sit on the tyre because there was a little dew. Now the tyres were wet, now this could not stick and I just took a chance to place it right at the back. They said I should not walk on my feet, I should tiptoe. Now due to lack of enough training I leaned against the car when I stood up and then it exploded.

MR RICHARD: Now other than that, is there any other aspect of the evidence of the applicants that you disagree with?

MR RAMATOLO: Not unless you remind me. There are many.

MR RICHARD: The last point I'm going to deal with, and this is the last, is did you regard Mr Hani as an enemy?

MR RAMATOLO: After they convinced me that this man was a dangerous even to Lesotho, Mr Prinsloo put it very well when he said he got into the government offices. I saw him as an enemy, but not my enemy. I don't know how to put this really. Yes, he was an enemy, but he was not such a bad person.

CHAIRPERSON: Mr Ramatolo, he was a source of income to you, is that not so? Not so? By killing him you were going to get money. By informing on him you were going to get money. So it wasn't a question of whether he was a friend or not, or a nice person or not, he was source of income for you. Isn't that your difficulty?

MR RAMATOLO: Allow me to tell the truth, allow me to tell the truth here.

CHAIRPERSON: I thought you were doing so all the time.

MR RAMATOLO: I'm saying it is difficult to kill someone who has done nothing to you. It was the first thing - it was quite difficult, but I'm saying to you because I had committed myself already to these people, now this was very dangerous to me. But he was not the source of my income.

CHAIRPERSON: Yes, Mr Richard.


Mr Ramatolo, did you know Mr Hani?

MR RAMATOLO: Yes, by sight. I did not know him as a close person, I only knew him by sight.

ADV SIGODI: Had you ever given any information to Mr Prinsloo, to Mr de Bruin about Mr Hani? Is there any information that you ever gave to them?

MR RAMATOLO: Yes, it was in relation to time. They wanted to confirm what they heard. They wanted to know where is he at what time. Yes, that's what I gave them.

ADV SIGODI: From - the information that you gave them was information that you had from observation, is that correct?

MR RAMATOLO: That is correct.

ADV SIGODI: Did you ever have close contact? Were you friends with him, spoke to him, went to his house, or got information from him directly?

MR RAMATOLO: Not at all, I had never set my foot at his home.

ADV SIGODI: Because the impression I seem to get was that why you were chosen to kill him is because you were a contact, you had contact with him.

MR RAMATOLO: They can confirm it, I did not have any contact with him, not at all.

ADV SIGODI: Did you belong to any political party? Were you active politically, in Lesotho?


ADV SIGODI: Which political party did you belong to?

MR RAMATOLO: BCP. Basotholand Congress Party.

ADV SIGODI: Who told you that Mr Hani liked to exercise, because in your own words in your evidence you were saying:

"I was told that he liked exercising and it was winter."

Where did you get that information from?

MR RAMATOLO: Mr de Bruin told me.

ADV SIGODI: So you were not an informer, he had the information. Mr de Bruin had the information, he gave the information to you?

MR RAMATOLO: According to my view there was another person who was supplying information as I did, they just wanted to confirm what was said by this person, because they told me exactly as it was. It's true I confirmed it. It was true, the information they gave me about his exercising ...(intervention)

CHAIRPERSON: Mr Ramatolo, I get the impression that you're trying to distance yourself from this whole situation. You were after all the one who attempted to plant the bomb and had you been successful, Mr Hani would probably have been dead before he was murdered, not so?

MR RAMATOLO: I agree with you.

CHAIRPERSON: Ja. Now you did try to murder him by planting the bomb.


CHAIRPERSON: And in terms of your evidence you did so because you expected a payment of R6 000, correct?

MR RAMATOLO: That is correct.

CHAIRPERSON: Now you say also that it was de Bruin that told you that Mr Hani exercised in the morning regularly, correct?

MR RAMATOLO: That is correct.

CHAIRPERSON: Is there any evidence you gave to de Bruin or Prinsloo about Hani?


CHAIRPERSON: Absolutely not?

MR RAMATOLO: I only gave them evidence as far as time is concerned, I told them "Yes, it's true he drops his wife at this time", but there are no other issues that I gave evidence on, or information on.

CHAIRPERSON: What was the information you gave? Now I want to know exactly what you told them and whom did you tell.

MR RAMATOLO: I wanted to relate this from 1978. I broke from these people. I don't know when was it, but in 1980 we met again. It was during the discussions of Mr Hani's issue. You actually stopped me when I wanted to elaborate on the discussions about Mr Hani, the assassination of Mr Hani.

CHAIRPERSON: Look I don't know if you misunderstanding me, all I'm asking and I think it's a very simple question, did you provide any information regarding Mr Hani, to either Mr de Bruin or to Mr Prinsloo? And you said yes, you told him about the time he dropped his wife. That's all?


CHAIRPERSON: Do I understand you correctly so far?


CHAIRPERSON: Now what did that information entail? Where did you tell either Mr de Bruin or Mr Prinsloo, Mr Hani dropped his wife? Or when? Sorry, when.

MR RAMATOLO: He dropped her off at 8 o'clock at her workplace and I was also told that he likes buying a newspaper at 8 o'clock in the morning.

CHAIRPERSON: So you were the one that was receiving the information, not giving it? Do I understand you correctly? You were receiving this information from Mr de Bruin, is that correct? You were told about his buying a newspaper, correct?

MR RAMATOLO: Very well so, Sir.

ADV SIGODI: Who told you that?

MR RAMATOLO: It was Mr de Bruin.

ADV SIGODI: Where did you stay in relation to Mr Hani?

MR RAMATOLO: About 10 kilometres away from his home.

ADV SIGODI: Did you ever take time to sit, watch his routine yourself?

MR RAMATOLO: I was given a sketch indicating where he lived and I followed that sketch and I discovered where he lived.

ADV SIGODI: Did you know what car he drove? Did you personally know what car he drove?

MR RAMATOLO: Yes, I ... I don't know - yes, he was driving a car but he changed it too and he moved on to a Stanza and they said "He's now driving in a Stanza." I don't know who told me, whether Mr Prinsloo or Mr de Bruin told me.

ADV SIGODI: Yes, but the information that he was driving a Stanza, where did you get that information from? Was it information that you yourself supplied to Mr de Bruin, or did Mr de Bruin give you that information, in order to target him?

MR RAMATOLO: I heard from them that he was driving a Stanza and I confirmed. Either Mr de Bruin or Mr Prinsloo, one of them told me. One of them informed me.

ADV SIGODI: You could go and target him to kill him?

MR RAMATOLO: Can you repeat your question?

ADV SIGODI: I'm saying they give him the information that he was driving, that Mr Hani was driving a Stanza, in order to enable Mr Ramatolo to be able to kill Mr Hani, to target him.

MR RAMATOLO: Yes, I would say so, because the kind of a car he was driving was also an important issue for them to know.

MR RICHARD: May I proceed?

Mr Ramatolo, did you not operate as a taxi driver in and around Maseru during 1980? Don't nod your head, you must answer the question. You must say yes or no.


MR RICHARD: Now did you ever go past where Mr Hani lived? In your car, on foot, during 1980?


MR RICHARD: And why did you go there?

MR RAMATOLO: It was after I have been told to identify very well where he lived and how many cars were at his home.

MR RICHARD: And how often did you go there? Often?

MR RAMATOLO: It could be three times.

MR RICHARD: Now how long did you sit outside his house? How long were you outside his house?

MR RAMATOLO: I was just walking past.

MR RICHARD: Did you ever sit outside his house and watch what was happening there for half and hour, an hour?

CHAIRPERSON: Mr Richard, he said he walked past the house.

MR RAMATOLO: I walked past, but there's a certain day where I stayed a little bit far from the house, but it was very far from the house, but I could see from that distance. It was not very close to his home.

MR RICHARD: Now you just walked past, you didn't stay and watch for an hour or two?


MR RICHARD: The Chairperson is correct. Now at this stage I want to ask you one question, how often did you go to the house to put the bomb there, did you go once or more times?

MR RAMATOLO: I went twice. The third time was for planting the bomb. Let me explain it this way so that you understand it ...(intervention)

MR RICHARD: My question is simple, how often did you go with the bomb to plant it? Did you go and plant it the first time you had the bomb with you, or did you take more than once?

MR RAMATOLO: Twice and the third time I placed it.

MR RICHARD: So now I understand you had the bomb with you three times and it was on the third time that you put the bomb?


MR RICHARD: Thank you.

CHAIRPERSON: ...(indistinct) did you place it the first time?

MR RAMATOLO: Chairperson, it looks like we don't understand each other. I said this was my first time and I was scared, I had this fear, but when I went back to report I reported differently, I told them the dogs disturbed me and there were people. That's the kind of report I gave them.

MR RICHARD: And after you had been there, did you think you could just go back to Mr de Bruin or Mr Prinsloo and say, "I'm too scared to carry on with this, I'm not doing it, I want to be left alone"?

MR RAMATOLO: The second time Mr Prinsloo said to me, "You are going today and if you fail, we're not going to carry on with this mission." And that taught me something.

MR RICHARD: What did it teach you?

MR MALAN: Sorry for interrupting you, Mr Richard.

You heard Mr Prinsloo say in his evidence that when he handed you the bomb, it was built into the car, it was hid in that special compartment, you drove away with the car, they waited at the border because the idea was that you would place the bomb that same night.

MR RAMATOLO: No, the border gate was closing at four. We chose that one because it was quiet, now around two/three I crossed, then I was expected to bring the report the following day.

MR MALAN: That's exactly how I understood the evidence ...(intervention)

INTERPRETER: The speaker's mike is not on.

MR MALAN: Sorry. The evidence was that you would travel in this car where the bomb was hid and that you would place that bomb in the Stanza that same night and report back the next morning.

MR RAMATOLO: Yes, report the following day.

MR MALAN: Yes, report the following day. Yes, and that they waited for you at the border, but you did not report back and they then later learnt that the bomb went off and you were injured. You heard all that evidence, it was given in your presence.

MR RAMATOLO: I heard the evidence. This happened at 3 o'clock in the morning and there is no border gate open at that time.

MR MALAN: Ja, no ...(indistinct)

INTERPRETER: ... they expected you to come back the next morning, not during the night, but to report back the next morning. You said the same. The following day, the morning of the following day you were supposed to report back.


MR MALAN: I heard you say that, I heard that to be their evidence. The difference is this, that in the evidence of the applicants they say you were supposed to place that bomb the same night when you went through the border post with the car. Is that so or is that not so?

MR RAMATOLO: That is not so, because the border gates are closed, the border gates closed at ten.

MR RICHARD: Chairperson, I don't believe the witness is understanding the question.

MR MALAN: I'm not sure that we understand each other, I'll leave it there.

MR RAMATOLO: Can you please repeat it.

MR RICHARD: I'm going to try one last time. The arrangement the night that you took the Valiant from South Africa into Lesotho, was you would go from the border gate to the place where Mr Hani lived, put the bomb, leave it and the next morning come back to where Mr Prinsloo and Mr de Bruin were waiting for you. Is that correct?

MR RAMATOLO: That is, yes.

MR MALAN: Thank you, Mr Richard.

MR RICHARD: Now was that the only time you tried to place the bomb and had the bomb with you?

MR RAMATOLO: The day of the explosion?



MR RICHARD: No further questions.


CHAIRPERSON: Are you going to be long, Ms Cambanis?


Mr Ramatolo, just explain, is it right that the only reason that you took the bomb to the car that you believed to be that of Mr Chris Hani, was to get the R6 000?

MR RAMATOLO: Yes, but believe me, I was working with people who were no good at all.

CHAIRPERSON: All mercenaries say so.

MS CAMBANIS: Thank you, Chair.

How old were you at that time? 1980.

MR RAMATOLO: I'm sure I was 29 years.

MS CAMBANIS: And you were a Lesotho national at that time?


MS CAMBANIS: Are you still a Lesotho ...


MS CAMBANIS: You're now a South African citizen?


MS CAMBANIS: When did you become a South African citizen?


MS CAMBANIS: We know that you've not applied for amnesty in this matter, is that correct?

MR RAMATOLO: I made an application in 1996. Yes, in 1996 in December. The SABC approached me and they said "If you can come up with the truth", because this was already in the newspapers ...(intervention)

CHAIRPERSON: Did you receive a result of that application, already? Today?


CHAIRPERSON: What did you say in your application? That you tried to murder Mr Chris Hani by putting a bomb under the car, or trying to put a bomb under the car, that accidentally went off, and you did so because you were promised R6 000? Is that the basic version that you would have put in the application?

MR RAMATOLO: I cannot understand.

MS CAMBANIS: Chairperson, as a matter of fact, no application was made. He did not make an application.


MS CAMBANIS: Thank you.

You said that you told the police persons what time he dropped Mrs Hani off, what time the late Mr Hani, Chris Hani dropped his wife off in the morning and that was about 8 o'clock.

MR RAMATOLO: Yes, Ma’am.

MS CAMBANIS: And when he went to drop his wife off he also had his two young daughters in the car with him, is that correct, that was his habit? He would drop the children, the youngest off at nursery school, the older one at school and then he would drop off Mrs Hani, at 8 o'clock at her place of work, is that correct?

MR RAMATOLO: Well I don't know about the children being taken tot he nursery, but what we discussed, we discussed an issue of occupants of a car. Yes, it was discussed, but I don't recall what was said about the children. But I do recall it was once discussed.

MS CAMBANIS: But what you did tell the Chairperson is that what information you did give to the police, is that the late Mr Hani dropped his wife off at 8 o'clock in the morning. Do you recall that? You told the Chairperson that.

MR RAMATOLO: Yes, Ma’am. Yes, I gave that kind of information.

MS CAMBANIS: And you were aware that in the mornings when Mr Hani left his resident, at least his wife would have been in the car with him?



CHAIRPERSON: Were Mr de Bruin and Mr Prinsloo aware of that?

MR RAMATOLO: They knew it very well.

CHAIRPERSON: How do you know they knew that very well?

MR RAMATOLO: I recall very well that this issue of occupants in the car was once discussed with them, it was myself and them.

CHAIRPERSON: And you heard them testify here, you've heard it, not so?

MR RAMATOLO: I heard them testify, yes.

CHAIRPERSON: And I don't know if one or both of them said in their evidence, that it would be Hani and his driver come bodyguard that would have been in the car, and I think it's Mr Prinsloo who said, yes he expected both of them to die. Do you recall you heard that?

MR RAMATOLO: Yes, I heard that evidence but I really don't know anything about the bodyguard.

CHAIRPERSON: Now, I think before Mr Prinsloo finished his evidence, your representative called you from the gallery to enquire from you, probably, if there was anything else you wished to raise, or you wanted him to raise with Mr Prinsloo, correct? Do you remember that?


CHAIRPERSON: Why didn't you tell him about the occupants of that car? Because it's important, Mrs Hani would have been in the car also, and his two children and you say you don't know about the two children, fine, but you say that you knew about Mrs Hani. Why didn't you tell your legal representative to raise that issue with Mr Prinsloo?

MR RAMATOLO: When Mr Prinsloo was testifying I was sitting down there without the headphones, I could follow a little bit, I catch bits and pieces of Afrikaans. I could only follow to a certain point, that's why I only raised two issues. I don't really understand this language. I was still down there with no headphones.

CHAIRPERSON: Yes, Mr Cambanis.

MS CAMBANIS: Thank you.

And at that time, did you also see Mrs Hani, at the time of this placing of the bomb, around Lesotho, Maseru? Do you remember seeing her at that time?

MR RAMATOLO: Before placing the bomb or after?

MS CAMBANIS: Before. Do you recall - I'll tell you why, Sir, she was pregnant with their third child, do you remember that?

MR RAMATOLO: I do not know her being pregnant, but she was a housewife and she was supposed to be at home.

MS CAMBANIS: Yes, I understand that, that's right. What is that, that she would have been pregnant and at home? What is your point, Mr Ramatolo?

MR RAMATOLO: What I'm saying is, that was her house and she was supposed to be at home as a housewife, I don't know, maybe she had gone somewhere, but any housewife would be at her house.

MS CAMBANIS: Alright, Mr Ramatolo. Let's go back, that's very important, that was her house. The place where this happened was the Hani family home, where Mr and Mrs Hani and their two daughters resided. That's where the bomb was placed, is it not?

MR RAMATOLO: That is so.

MS CAMBANIS: It was not at a house where he lived with some bodyguards.

MR RAMATOLO: I would really not confirm the occupants of the house. I don't know about the bodyguard, but there were always people at that house.

MS CAMBANIS: In fact, Mr Hani at the time, did not have a bodyguard or a driver. Can you comment?

MR RAMATOLO: I believe so. Yes, during the day you would see him alone and he was walking even in the yards and the tight security was only applied after the attempt.

MS CAMBANIS: Precisely. Then you spoke about the difficulty with the dogs, you spoke to the Committee, what was the difficulty with the dogs that you'd been prepared on? We're talking only about the placing of the bomb, Mr Ramatolo. You said there was a difficulty with dogs, do you remember? In the yard of the late Mr Hani.

MR RAMATOLO: The issue of dogs cropped up relating to the firearm. When I was next to the house the dogs barked at me, but to them I said I can't get into the house with the bomb because of the dogs. That's what I told them.

MS CAMBANIS: Yes, and then what solution was made about getting into the house with the bomb?

MR RAMATOLO: They asked me what kind of dogs they were and I told them it was a small dog, a puppy, and a big dog and they told me "You must step five feet and then stop and sit a little bit down and the small dog will go back and the bigger one will follow it". And that's what I did.

MS CAMBANIS: So when you entered the yard to plant the bomb there was no difficulty with dogs, because all the dogs did what they were supposed to do?

MR RAMATOLO: I had a strategy to avoid the dogs.

MS CAMBANIS: Alright. Do we now agree that the car in which the bomb would have been placed, or against which it would have been place, was a Stanza? Do you agree?


MS CAMBANIS: And if I tell you that in addition to being a housewife, Mr Hani owned that car and worked. It was her car, the Stanza.

MR RAMATOLO: When I said she was a housewife, I did not mean she was staying at home, I was saying it was her house.

MS CAMBANIS: Yes. I understand that, because you've already told the Committee that he dropped her off at work every morning at 8 o'clock, we know that, but the car, if I tell you that that car in fact belonged to Mrs Hani, Mr Hani did not have a car at that time, you can't dispute that?

MR RAMATOLO: Yes, it was a family car, it was the Stanza and a bakkie, but really I would not know that this was the wife's car and this was the husband's car.

MS CAMBANIS: And I'll just put to you briefly, Sir, that that family car, the Stanza, was the car in which, had the bomb gone off, the pregnant Mrs Hani, the two daughters as well as Mr Hani, would have been there when the bomb detonated.


MS CAMBANIS: And when the bomb did detonate and you hurt yourself, tell the Committee who helped you as you lay in the yard.

MR RAMATOLO: I was still coming to that point and I was being rushed and I even - it's Mr Chris Hani who picked me up and he put me inside the house and he took something like a blanket and he wrapped me, because it was cold and my clothes were torn and some parts of the trousers were torn. He himself assisted me.

MS CAMBANIS: Yes, and Mrs Hani and the daughter was also present and they also saw you, is that correct?

MR RAMATOLO: Yes, Mrs Hani was present, she was very - she was reprimanding me and the husband was saying "Please, just stop it." Yes, she was present.

MS CAMBANIS: Yes. And so in other words by the that your identity would have been know to the Hani family, they knew exactly who you were. After the incident.

MR RAMATOLO: After the incident?


MR RAMATOLO: Or before the incident?

MS CAMBANIS: After the incident.

MR RAMATOLO: Yes, they knew me after the incident, because we went to the court and she was very harsh on me and the husband still was calming her down.

MS CAMBANIS: Thank you, Chair, no further questions.



Mr Ramatolo, didn't Mrs Hani consult with you before you came to before you came to testify?

MR RAMATOLO: Not at all.

MS VAN DER WALT: I want to put it to you - I'm not going to be long, Mr Prinsloo on whose behalf I appear, made an application which was made available to all the parties, he also testified, and you were assisted by an able legal representative, you sat here, you're an intelligent person, you saw other people wearing these headsets, if it is true that you had no headset, the evidence of Prinsloo was never disputed when he was busy testifying. And now just listen very carefully. It was never disputed that he got confirmation from you that you had personal knowledge of Mr Hani before the incident, or before the time. That was not disputed. Do you want to comment on that?

MR RAMATOLO: Mr Prinsloo is not informing you properly. To know a person does not mean to know a person in contact, it could mean to know a person at a distance.

MS VAN DER WALT: Mr Prinsloo also testified that you gave him a sketch of the house of Mr Hani, and that was also not disputed. Do you want to comment on that?

MR RAMATOLO: Mr Prinsloo says they got information from many sources. I had long received the Hani sketch from de Bruin. Mr Prinsloo got involved in this issue in 1988 and I knew this man from 1978.

MS VAN DER WALT: Sir, if you, as you testified initially, and I want to put it to you that your evidence, you tailored your evidence as you saw fit. You initially testified that the information which you got about Mr Hani, you got from Mr de Bruin, you got all the information from Mr de Bruin. When Mrs Hani's legal representative asked you about this, you confirmed that you knew she was a housewife and that you knew that she lived in that house, that you knew she was a passenger in the car. So your evidence makes absolutely no sense, because on the one hand you're saying you knew nothing about Mr Hani, that Mr de Bruin gave you all the information, on the other hand you confirm all the information which the legal representative of Mrs Hani puts to you. I am putting it to you that your evidence makes absolutely not sense whatsoever. Do you want to comment on that?

MR RAMATOLO: Let me respond. Knowing a person does not mean you have to know the person's bedroom, I said I knew that she was a Lesotho citizen, do you understand that, and I knew her to be his wife. It was known, there was no dispute about that.

MS VAN DER WALT: Sir, when you started working at Vlakplaas after you had returned from Lesotho, after the incident, how much money did you receive at Vlakplaas, for this incident?

MR RAMATOLO: Nothing, not even a cent.

MS VAN DER WALT: But you were in the employ of the Police, correct?

MR RAMATOLO: At the time of the incident?

MS VAN DER WALT: I was not given money for this incident, what I did, when I was already at Vlakplaas, after a long time I was a policeman and I noticed that it was 1989. Once I realised that there are some ways of getting money ...(indistinct), and I wrote a letter, I wrote a letter to Mr Smith in Bloemfontein who was the Head of Bloemfontein and I said to him - I still remember, "When you send a child and he gets injured, there is a way of compensating your child, what about the injury that I sustained?" Should I carry on? Mr Smith made a plan and he said Mr Fouche in Ladybrand should come up with a plan because I was injured. It was then that Mr Fouche gave me R5 000. It was 1989.

MS VAN DER WALT: Sir, I'm not going to revisit your evidence with you, because I think the record will speak for itself, but I want to tell you that Mr Prinsloo's evidence was not disputed, except for the fact that your training, your firearm training which you received, well that Mr Prinsloo disputed, and Mrs Hani's version was also not put to Mr Prinsloo.

No further questions, thank you.


CROSS-EXAMINATION BY MR NORTIER: Just one or two aspects, Chair.

This application, the bundle in which the application was contained, was also made available to you, is that not so?

MR RAMATOLO: I did not get it, it was handed to my legal representative.

MR NORTIER: But certainly it was gone through with you?

MR RAMATOLO: Yes, he went through it, it's in Afrikaans.

MR NORTIER: On page 46 of the application, reference is made to the fact that you as the informer, identified the car and that the car was used exclusively by Hani and his bodyguard. That's the first paragraph, page 46. What I want ask you, if you had this bundle at your disposal, and where this specific allegation was contained, why was this not taken up during cross-examination of the applicant ...(intervention)

CHAIRPERSON: And it's also in his evidence.

MR NORTIER: That's correct. Why I'm trying to take this point further is because he gave the explanation that he at some point, didn't have the earphones on his head, so he couldn't hear the evidence, so my submission is that the bundle had been gone through with him and that covers that point.

MR RAMATOLO: That the car was only used by Hani? May you repeat your questions, maybe I don't understand you well.

CHAIRPERSON: It was put in evidence and it is contained in their written applications, that that car was specifically used by Mr Hani and the driver, or whatever he was, a bodyguard or something.

MR RAMATOLO: What I know is that the car was used by him.

MR NORTIER: I'm not going to take the matter further, Chairperson. In conclusion I want to put it to you that Mr Coetzee has stated that they were quite adamant about the fact that Mrs Hani and the children should not be injured during the incident.

That is all, thank you Chair.


MR RAMATOLO: Can I respond to that? Should I respond to that? If ever I saw Mr Coetzee, it was just once. When I saw him it was during a braai. I had crossed to come and report back as to what happened and that's when I spoke with Mr Coetzee and that was all. The planning, the money, everything else, he was not - I have never seen him.

MR PRINSLOO: Just a singular question, Chairperson. I beg your pardon, Chairperson?

CHAIRPERSON: I hope it is as you have promised, one question.

CROSS-EXAMINATION BY MR PRINSLOO: Mr Ramatolo, you testified that you received informers fees from Mr de Bruin for information that you had provided, information regarding Mr Hani, is that correct?

MR RAMATOLO: No. I want to put it straight so that you understand it, the monies that were paid out by Mr de Bruin, were done before the planning of this incident. They never got information, no other information they got from me. He might have given me R20/R30 for petrol purposes. You had to sign a paper after receiving money, even R40.

MR PRINSLOO: Chairperson, I will not repeat what my colleague has already stated.

I put it to you that you provided information with regard to Mr Hani in Lesotho, and that all the information came from you as has already been testified to.

MR RAMATOLO: Information about Chris?

MR PRINSLOO: And furthermore, Mr de Bruin denies that he took you to Bloemfontein for the training of use of a firearm, so that Mr Hani could be shot with that.

MR RAMATOLO: Let your gentlemen speak the truth, he took me to Bloemfontein. I went to Bloemfontein twice. The first time it was in connection with the firearm and with the issue of the bomb, I went to Bloemfontein. Please talk to them, I am not implicating them on anything, they know that what I'm telling here is the truth. Mr de Bruin might be getting old, but he knows what is happening, he knows that I'm telling the truth. He even took me to Vlakplaas. Will he also refuse that one as well?

MR PRINSLOO: I'm not going to repeat it. Furthermore, Mr de Bruin has confirmed in his evidence that you provided all the Hani information to him.

I have nothing further.


MR RAMATOLO: I would love to respond to that. If you had listened to Mr Prinsloo's evidence, the decision for this person

to be eliminated it has been taken from the Headquarters here in Pretoria. Now a mere informer, I did not have matric then, my information ...(indistinct) sole one that you can use for somebody like that one. I don't believe that, there was somebody else who was providing the same information for the same purpose. Please don't put me deep into this now, let's talk the truth.

CHAIRPERSON: Mr Richard, have you got any re-examination?

MR RICHARD: No further questions, no re-examination.


ADV STEENKAMP: No questions, thank you Honourable Chairman.


CHAIRPERSON: Tell me, you were charged with that attempted murder in Lesotho.

MR RAMATOLO: Can you repeat again.

CHAIRPERSON: You were charged in a criminal court for attempted murder or the bombing of Mr Chris Hani.

MR RAMATOLO: Yes, yes, yes.

CHAIRPERSON: And you were let out on bail?


CHAIRPERSON: How much? R6 000?

MR RAMATOLO: It was about R200.

CHAIRPERSON: And that was paid by the South African Police?

MR RAMATOLO: I have never seen the money, but I heard from Court that the money for the bail has been paid. I was being represented by the lawyer, I have never even paid a cent for that lawyer, everything was being organised from across the border, but today it's funny if really I was the man who handled the finances, I handled this alone.

CHAIRPERSON: No well all we're interested in is who handled the bomb, and you've answered that. Thank you, you're excused.


MR RICHARD: Thank you, Chairperson.

CHAIRPERSON: Is there any other witnesses?

MR RICHARD: No other witnesses. May I make arrangements with the TRC staff for the witness' return to his home? May be excused for that now, thank you.

CHAIRPERSON: Ms Cambanis, have you got any witnesses? None. Is that the end of the evidence then? Ms Cambanis, I just want to find out what your client's attitude it ...(indistinct - no microphone)

MS CAMBANIS: Chairperson, you would have noticed that my client left at an earlier stage, I really would ask for five minutes to telephone.

CHAIRPERSON: Please, because I need to know whether it's being officially opposed or not.

MS CAMBANIS: Thank you, Chair. May I be excused to do that now?

CHAIRPERSON: We'll adjourn for about - are you scheduled to be here tomorrow?


CHAIRPERSON: Well then we'll adjourn for five minutes.

MS CAMBANIS: Thank you.



CHAIRPERSON: We are informed that Mrs Hani's indicated that she doesn't wish to call any witnesses or place any further evidence before us.

In the circumstances, that's the end of the matter. We will reserve judgment and hand it down in due course.

We'll adjourn till tomorrow morning.

MR RICHARD: As the Committee pleases.