Tuesday, December 16, 1997 at 15:53:14

We are committed to peace and reconciliation in our country and recognise our unconscious and sometimes conscious complicity in the various injustices of apartheid by the very fact of our being white and hence privileged over our fellow countrymen and women.

Professor Terence and Dr Margot Beard, 
Grahamstown, SA


Tuesday, December 16, 1997 at 16:21:49

I regret not having done more in the past to bring about change in this country. I believe we can build a great country together.. We have to change attitudes and fight against negativism and I try to speak out whenever I can in my circles to put another perspective forward - that the more we all try to pull together, the more we will all succeed.

Barbara Lange, Pretoria, SA

Tuesday, December 16, 1997 at 18:22:33

Tomorrow is my 60th birthday, that's why it is so important for me to show my commitment to the TRC

Evelyn Zumpt, Uniedaal

Tuesday, December 16, 1997 at 21:16:25

We regret that we did not vociferously express our opposition to Apartheid and lived well while others were in pain.

Ray and Mary Enslin, Port Elizabeth, SA

Tuesday, December 16, 1997 at 22:49:10

I feel embarrassed and humiliated that I was partly "taken in" by the great lie of apartheid. Although I always knew it was stupid from a humanitarian, economic and political point of view, I never appreciated the enormity of the crime against my fellow South Africans, and for this I seek their forgiveness. I believed that the right way of fighting the system was through the ballot box, and it was enough to assist the liberals in whatever way I could. I (proudly) bore the banner of "daai blerrie kommunis" although I was, and am, a free marketeer. The worst of it is that we can not say "We did not know", because we did know and chose rather not to believe those "lies" and chose rather the route of comfort and safety.

Selwyn Lange, Pretoria, SA

Tuesday, December 16, 1997 at 23:05:07

As an average White South African male I grew during the Apartheid era and I never realised then that what was happening amounted to Gross Human Rights Violations. Today one realises that our leaders had brainwashed us into believing everything they said. It sounds like a bad excuse but I never thought that I did anything wrong. I used the anti-Black jargon of the day and did not have any problem with the Whites Only signs and it is only today that I realise the hurt and humiliation that was suffered by so many. I was never a racist and prided myself on the fact that all our workers always commented on the fact that I was a "nice Boss". I never mistreated anyone and I always tried to be civil. The only problem was that I never did anything!

Today I say to all the people who suffered while I lived in relative luxury that I am sorry that I was blind. I looked but did not see. The TRC is a forum that could work in theory but I am afraid to say that it will not achieve much in practice. The perception is that there is not fairness and although the past was not fair it does seem that some of the happenings at the TRC are a joke. I have a lot of respect for Desmond Tutu but his performance after Winnie Mandela's testimony did a lot of harm to the credibility of the TRC. His feelings toward her are probably real but to beg and plead like he did after she obviously was not prepared to ask herself left a bad taste in the mouth.

I am happy to go into the new SA and to do my part in the building process. I am sorry and I want us all to share in all that is good and I will do what I can, BUT please can we stop wasting taxpayers money on cars and overseas holidays and when people misuse their positions or when they are proved to be inefficient FIRE them, don't protect them. A lot of ordinary white people will embrace the changes if only they see that their taxes are spent on uplifting the people and not enriching the few already fat enough cats. Get tough on crime! Stop the promises! Finally, I wish that every ordinary person in our country will have the basic things in life. A house, happy children and everything else I wish for myself. All I ask in return is that my taxes is spent on important things and not wasted by people who want to prove something. Please the party is over! Let's get down to some hard work and build the best country money can buy. Good Luck

Len van der Walt, Paarl, SA

Wednesday, December 17, 1997 at 00:14:22

I think all white South Africans should be ashamed at the way we have all in some way discriminated against Black people. I was in the defence force conscripted in 1983. Obviously I did patrols in the locations during the unrest periods and want to say that I hated every moment of it, but we were not able to refuse duty. I apologise for all the people of colour that were affected by those actions.

David Ravenscroft, Cape Town, SA

Wednesday, December 17, 1997 at 07:52:55

I wish to express my regret for the past in this country and acknowledge my responsibility through my silence and inaction. My prayer is for a future where standards of truth, goodness and respect for all will prevail.

Hilarie Riphagen, Pretoria, SA

Wednesday, December 17, 1997 at 08:16:14

I want to be identified with the work of the TRC and the work that it has been able to do on behalf of the South African Apartheid victims -- who have also been the victims of my white privilege. While being grateful for the very small and limited role some individuals have been able to play in an awkward, long, painful process of liberation; there was/is so much more that should/could/ have been done and must be done. There were so many people who needed more from me and I failed them. I'm sorry. I am, though, deeply grateful for all those who participated in my own liberation: my friends who grew up with me in Woodstock; my friends and comrades in Stellenbosch (and elsewhere); my children - Marisa, Nathan and Tim (with their sensitivity and involvement); my friend Hester and the TRC (in revealing, listening and healing.

Victor Honey, Stellenbosch, SA

Wednesday, December 17, 1997 at 08:16:29

I hereby commit myself to forgive those who caused so much hurt against myself and many other fellow South Africans. I dedicate myself towards the process of reconciliation and reparation, and love for all human beings.

Louis Hannie, Cape Town, SA