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Type AMNESTY HEARING
Starting Date 04 November 1998
Names TSEKO WASHINGTON MAFANYA
EXAMINATION BY MR MBANDAZAYO: Thank you Mr Chairperson, just before I start Mr Chairperson, with regard to this applicant he will confirm the affidavit of Mr Khotle as well as his own affidavit which was at that time submitted to the State President for indemnity before the coming to operation of the said amnesty.
MR MBANDAZAYO: Do you also confirm that the affidavit at page 31 of the bundle, Mr Chairperson, to page 37 in relation to application for indemnity was made by yourself and also that you abide by these contents?
CHAIRPERSON: Mr Mafanya, if you take a look at page 31, is that a mistake down at the bottom? You say count 1 and count 2 and they happen a month apart from each other, was it not at the same time that those count 1 and count 2 took place?
ADV MPSHE: Mr Chairperson, that is the - I don't know whether to say evidence because I led no evidence, there is no evidence to lead Mr Chairman, but to call one of the victims in the Heilbron operation, Captain Snyman is available.
CAPTAIN SNYMAN: I just wish to say that it was difficult to forget this incident and my family went through difficult times but all is well now. My christian belief says that I cannot judge anybody else because since we are forgiven I also have forgiven and I have to tell the applicants that they have to realise that there are other ways to solve these problems. I wish that they would change their lives and they would not act in a similar manner. That is all I wish to say, thank you.
CHAIRPERSON: Yes. No thank you, seeing that you haven't given evidence, there won't be any cross-examination but it's been noted what you've said and it's always appreciated by the Committee to hear from victims to receive statements from them. Thank you very much for coming, Captain Snyman, we appreciate what you've said.
ADV MPSHE: Mr Chairperson, Members of the Committee, Captain Snyman was in the company of Captain Rossouw who also was injured in the shoot out, actually he was more injured than Captain Snyman, the eye and the brains he's ...(intervention)
ADV MPSHE: Indeed yes and Captain Rossouw, I spoke to him last week and I spoke to him again this morning and his lawyer has faxed me a letter, I'll just put a copy in front of the Chair. If the Chair allows, I can read the contents of his affidavit onto the record?
CHAIRPERSON: Yes, we've got this affidavit received as said by Mr Mpshe from one Michael Antonie Rossouw who was one of the victims in the Heilbron incident which will be received as Exhibit B and Mr Mpshe will just read the contents of this affidavit sent by Mr Rossouw to this Committee.
"I, the undersigned, Michael Antonie Rossouw, residing at 3 Lantern Street, Jeffries Bay, declare under oath as follows
I am a victim of an assault with a firearm on the 13th July 1993 at Heilbron, Free State. I was shot five times by amongst others, Mr M. I. Khotle, T. W. Mafanya and Z.P. Mabala, whom is as presently applying for Amnesty and which matter will be heard on the 6th November 1998 in Johannesburg, Gauteng. I do not wish to attend the proceedings for I have no interest in the matter any more because I have forgiven the applicants and are trying to forget the whole incident. I wish them well with their application and have no objection to them being granted amnesty in the above mentioned matter. Dated at Jeffries Bay on the 30th day of October 1998. Signed by deponent and Commissioner of Oaths."
ADV MPSHE: Mr Chairman, if I may, that was the Heilbron attack. In respect of Vanderbijlpark attack, the attack on the civilians, there were also victims in there. Mr Chairman, the driver of the vehicle, Mr de Bruin, I communicated with him last week in Cape Town on Tuesday and he promised that he would be here today and that he would contact the other family members, Mr Concer's family. This morning I called him at 09H10 and he said he's so sorry, he cannot make it, he's got too much work he cannot come. I can convey this to the Committee. And he asked me again to convey this to the Committee that Mr Concer's family, that is Mr Concer is the gentleman who was killed in the car, his family is scattered all over, the wife is in P.E., the daughter is in East London, the son is in Vanderbijlpark. He has tried all the means at his disposal to inform them, he has actually done so but they have not responded but they know that the matter is taking place today.
MR MBANDAZAYO: Thank you Mr Chairperson. Just before, Mr Chairperson, I address the Committee which I'll be short, I'd like to say something with regard to what has been - statement by Captain Snyman and the other victim. I wish just to say to them that on behalf of the applicants, I've spoken to them, they've spoken to me that they wish to say that he must accept that they did not have anything personal against him, it's just because at the time they were involved in the liberation struggle and they were regarded then as targets and they accept the new dispensation and they're also accept him as part of the African society and also as South Africans together and also on my behalf, I say to him that what he has said today goes a long way to everybody who is here, to very process to which this Committee itself is involved, which is truth and reconciliation. It's fulfilling when you hear people like him to come and say what he has said and also his colleague who has just sent his statement or affidavit to this Committee.
CHAIRPERSON: Thank you Mr Mbandazayo, I agree fully with what you say. You know we sit in many, many applications and we only get it in a few where we get this sort of interrelation between people who are on the opposing side in the old days and it's very heartwarming as you say when there is this meeting of the mind now and this forgiveness shown and understanding that we are all now together and we must pull together as it were for the good of the whole community and the whole of society. Thank you very much and it's appreciated from both from what the victims have said and also what the applicants have responded in this regard. Thank you.
MR MBANDAZAYO IN ARGUMENT: Thank you Mr Chairperson, having said that I've no intention to detain this Committee for a long time with my long argument on this matter except to say that, Mr Chairperson, it's clear on the evidence that it's not in dispute, Mr Chairperson, that the three applicants were members of APLA and that at the time the political organisation to which they belonged was involved in the armed struggle and at the time they committed these incidents were in pursuance of that armed struggle.
MR MBANDAZAYO: Yes Mr Chairperson and if you take that Mr Chairperson, it's clear that nobody can come all the way from Mdantsane to come and settle a personal vendetta, it's clear that what he did, he came here with specific orders and after he has carried out those orders, he went back, they went back to Umtata to report what had happened and as such Mr Chairperson, it is my submission that applicants have complied with all the requirements of Section 20 and sub-section 1 as well as sub-section 2, that they were clearly acting on behalf of APLA, a publicly known political organisation, liberation, in which it was engaged in a political struggle against the day, at the time and that when they acted, they did not act for any personal gain or out of malice or out of personal vendetta against the victims and it's therefore, Mr Chairperson, my submission that the applicants should be granted amnesty as applied. Mr Chairperson, but I would like to go to the question of the ambush at Vereeniging. The question was raised that civilians were attacked, Mr Chairperson. Mr Chairperson, if the Committee has the submission of PAC which wanted to clarify the question of victims - of civilians being targets and where they used, they extracted a speech from the speech of the founding president of PAC which forms as their basic document, that speech, as one of the basic document of the PAC which is always referred to, whatever they did. Where they use an analogy of a sjambok in that speech, they also in their submission use that analogy of a sjambok, Mr Chairperson. Just if the Committee can allow me to quote it in full?
MR MBANDAZAYO: Just to explain the question of - Mr Chairperson - the question was asked from Sobuke by Janus where I'll quote from the beginning, the book itself, Mr Chairperson, Manaliso Robert Sobukwe
"But you are anti-white, but are you anti-white or not? The question is, what is meant by anti-whitism? It is not merely an emotional term without a precise signification. Let me put it in this way, in every struggle, whether national or class, the masses do not fight in abstraction, they do not hate oppression or capitalism, they concretise this and hate oppressor, be it the Governor General or colonial power, the landlord or the factory owner or in South Africa, the white man. But they hate these groups because they associate them with their oppression. Remove the association and you remove the hatred. In South Africa then, once white domination has been overthrown, the white man is no longer white man's boss but is an individual member of the society, there will be no reason to hate him and/or he will not be hated even by the masses. We are not anti-white therefore, we do not hate the Europeans because he is white, we hate him because he is an oppressor and it is plain dishonesty to say I hate the sjambok, not the person who wields it."
That closes my quotes, Mr Chairperson, and on that basis, Mr Chairperson, anybody, ordinary person will ...(indistinct) that simple saying that every white person is an oppressor. If you take it, an intellectual like that one who was a university lecturer, their leader, founding president put it that way that it's not because he's white, it's because we associate it with our oppression and therefore we hate, therefore we cannot fight the system, we have to fight the person who is wielding. It's plain dishonesty to say I hate the sjambok, not the person whose wielding the sjambok because the sjambok did not just take itself and hit me. It's just like to say, Mr Chairperson, when people say look I hate guns as if the gun is doing all the job on it's own, yet he is the person who is holding the gun who is wrong. That completes my argument Mr Chairperson.
CHAIRPERSON: Yes, thank you very much. Thank you Mr Mbandazayo, Mr Mpshe. We'll then adjourn until tomorrow. Tomorrow we have the last of this weeks hearings on the roll and Mr Mpshe what will be a convenient time to commence that?
CHAIRPERSON: No, I'm not blaming anyone it's just these things happen but I'm just saying I hope it doesn't happen again. Thank you, that brings us to the end of today's hearing. We will be resuming with a fresh hearing tomorrow at the same venue. We'll be starting that at 10 o'clock tomorrow morning. So we'll now adjourn until 10 o'clock tomorrow morning, thank you.