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Amnesty Hearings

Type AMNESTY HEARINGS

Starting Date 26 June 2000

Location JOHANNESBURG

Day 1

Names MDUBEKI JOHANNES NTANTISO

Case Number AM628/97

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CHAIRPERSON: Mr Mapoma?

MR MAPOMA: Chairperson, at this stage I am calling the application of Tshabalala and Ntantiso. They are both represented by Mr Mbandazayo and Mr Tony Richard is appearing for the victims. I do not see him here now, Chairperson. I do not know where he is.

CHAIRPERSON: Did you want a five minute adjournment or what is the situation?

MR MBANDAZAYO: Yes Chairperson, I would appreciate that.

CHAIRPERSON: I think we'll take a five minute adjournment for Mr Richard who is appearing for the victims in this matter. If you could just let us know as soon as you're ready, Mr Mapoma, thank you. We'll take a five minute adjournment.

MR MBANDAZAYO: Thank you.

COMMITTEE ADJOURNS

ON RESUMPTION

MR RICHARD: ...(inaudible) last?

CHAIRPERSON: Oh thank you, I think the last application went a lot quicker than expected so it's understandable that you might have thought it might have lasted longer.

We will now commence with the application of Messrs A T Tshabalala and M J Ntantiso and at this stage I would request the legal representatives to kindly place themselves on record?

MR MBANDAZAYO: Thank you Chairperson and Honourable Members of the Committee. My name is Lunga Mbandazayo and I'm representing the applicants in this matter. Thank you.

CHAIRPERSON: Thank you Mr Mbandazayo.

MR RICHARD: May it please, Chairperson, my surname is Richard, initials A J, I represent the Van Wyk family, the sons of the deceased.

CHAIRPERSON: Thank you Mr Richard.

MR MAPOMA: I'm Zuko Mapoma, Leader of Evidence.

CHAIRPERSON: Thank you Mr Mapoma. Mr Mbandazayo?

MR MBANDAZAYO: Thank you Chairperson, the first applicant will be Mdubeki Johannes Ntantiso and he is Xhosa speaking, Chairperson.

MDUBEKI JOHANNES NTANTISO: (sworn states)

EXAMINATION BY MR MBANDAZAYO: Thank you Chairperson.

Mr Ntantiso, is it correct that you were born on the 1st September 1965 in Gauteng?

MR NTANTISO: That is correct.

MR MBANDAZAYO: Can you tell the Committee how far have you gone to school?

MR NTANTISO: Standard 5.

MR MBANDAZAYO: Mr Ntantiso, can you tell the Committee when did you join the PAC?

MR NTANTISO: In 1988. If I'm not mistaken, it was in 1988.

MR MBANDAZAYO: Which branch of PAC did you belong to?

MR NTANTISO: In the central Vaal.

MR MBANDAZAYO: In which structure were you?

MR NTANTISO: I was in the Azania and also went to the Task Force.

MR MBANDAZAYO: Now when did you join the Task Force of PAC?

MR NTANTISO: In 1990 if I'm not mistaken.

MR MBANDAZAYO: Did you undergo any training as a Task Force member?

MR NTANTISO: Yes Sir.

MR MBANDAZAYO: Can you tell the Committee where did you undergo training?

MR NTANTISO: In the Transkei.

MR MBANDAZAYO: In which year?

MR NTANTISO: In 1990.

MR MBANDAZAYO: Who trained you in Transkei?

MR NTANTISO: Judge Makakula.

MR MBANDAZAYO: What were your duties as a Task Force member?

MR NTANTISO: It was to protect the comrades and leadership, PAC leadership as a whole.

MR MBANDAZAYO: Now Mr Ntantiso, can you tell us about this incident of October 1993?

CHAIRPERSON: Sorry, just before you get onto that, Mr Mbandazayo, what was the relationship, if any, between the Task Force and APLA?

MR NTANTISO: The Task Force was a structure affiliated to the APLA.

CHAIRPERSON: Mr Mbandazayo?

MR MBANDAZAYO: Thank you Chairperson.

Now Mr Ntantiso, can you tell us about the incident of 1993? What actually happened, what led to this incident?

MR NTANTISO: In 1993 we were coming from the meeting, Task Force meeting. When we were next to the PAC offices, it was held at the national office, headquarters of the PAC.

CHAIRPERSON: And where about was that?

MR NTANTISO: Here in Gauteng in Johannesburg area.

MR MBANDAZAYO: Yes, continue? Just be slow, don't be fast.

MR NTANTISO: When we were next to the PAC offices in Zone 11 two white men came in khaki uniform, they were driving in two cars and another one came later driving in a Mercedes Benz and there was a lorry also behind him. We were shocked to see the white men in the township and at the time they were not to come to the township. We had to devise a plan and we thought that they were coming to attack because the SADF had just attacked Mbendalosa house and killed his children in their sleep and we decided to close the office and after that myself and the other members, I actually instructed the members to shoot.

MR MBANDAZAYO: How many were you, who were the people who were involved in this? Who came up with this idea, who decided that those people should be shot at?

MR NTANTISO: The six of us.

MR MBANDAZAYO: Yes, can you tell the Committee the names of those people?

MR NTANTISO: It was myself, Linda, Amos Tshabalala, Edgar Mohapi, Philem Fukeng and his brother.

MR MBANDAZAYO: Were all of you Task Force members?

MR NTANTISO: Yes that is correct.

MR MBANDAZAYO: Can you tell the Committee how were you armed?

MR NTANTISO: We were armed with a pump gun and a pistol.

MR MBANDAZAYO: How many weapons did you have, all of you had weapons or it was few of you?

MR NTANTISO: The other one had a pistol and the other one had a pump gun.

MR MBANDAZAYO: Chairperson, I think if the interpretation is correct, the five were having pistols and one was having a pump gun.

CHAIRPERSON: So, yes, when I heard it my understanding was that there were just two weapons but let's just get this clear.

So did each of you - sorry, did one of you have a pump gun?

MR NTANTISO: Yes that is correct.

CHAIRPERSON: Who had the pump gun?

MR NTANTISO: Tshabalala.

CHAIRPERSON: And did the rest of you, the other five, all each have one pistol or did you have one pistol between the other five?

MR NTANTISO: Each and every person had his own pistol.

CHAIRPERSON: Thank you Mr Mbandazayo.

MR MBANDAZAYO: Thank you Chairperson.

Now when you say that you decided to shoot, you mention that there were other people. How many were they there, the white people who were there, when you shot at them?

MR NTANTISO: When we were shooting at Van Wyk the other two had already left the scene. I don't know where they were but they left and they never came back.

MR MBANDAZAYO: Okay, can you tell the Committee who actually shot the victim?

MR NTANTISO: It was Tshabalala.

MR MBANDAZAYO: So he used his pump gun?

MR NTANTISO: Yes that is correct.

MR MBANDAZAYO: And after shooting him what did you do?

MR NTANTISO: They retreated on foot and I went back driving in a car.

MR MBANDAZAYO: Why did you take the car?

MR NTANTISO: We were going to use the car, we were about to take the car to the Transkei.

CHAIRPERSON: This is the car that belonged to the deceased?

MR NTANTISO: Yes that is correct.

MR MBANDAZAYO: To whom were you going to take the car to Transkei?

MR NTANTISO: We were going to take it to the commander, Judge Makakula, commander of APLA.

MR MBANDAZAYO: You mentioned in your evidence that it was after the attack of the Mbendalosa family in Umtata. Was it the reason why you attacked Mr van Wyk or was it one of the reasons that you attacked him?

MR NTANTISO: It was just one of the reasons. The main reason was the fact that during that year it was declared by our commander, Sabelo Pama, that it was the Year of the Great Storm. The Year of the Great Storm meant the community should fight the system who was in place at the time.

MR MBANDAZAYO: Now you've mentioned correctly that it was the Year of the Great Storm but Mr van Wyk was a geologist, he was working there, just an innocent person. He was not a member of parliament, he was an ordinary citizen and if I may used the word soft, he was just a soft target, somebody who was harmless and had nothing to do with - what do you say to that?

MR NTANTISO: I can say Mr van Wyk was one of the people who were benefiting from the old regime. The reason for me to say so is because they had voting rights and they are the people who put the Nationalist Party Government in place.

MR MBANDAZAYO: Now what you say if an argument comes up and says look, this has nothing to do inasmuch as you were members of PAC or in Task Force but the incident had nothing to do with politics, it was just a criminal offence, just a plain robbery. What would you say to that?

MR NTANTISO: I'll dispute that because this was politically motivated because anyone who knew, everybody knew that in 1983 that that year was declared as the Year of the Great Storm. On top of that, during that same year, the PAC offices were being attacked all the time by the then government.

MR MBANDAZAYO: Now Mr Ntantiso, what do you say now to the family of the deceased?

MR NTANTISO: I can say I sympathise with them today. I have deep feelings and about what happened to Van Wyk on that particular day that he became one of the victims of the political violence.

MR MBANDAZAYO: Chairperson, that's the evidence of the applicant at this stage. Thank you.

NO FURTHER QUESTIONS BY MR MBANDAZAYO

CHAIRPERSON: Thank you Mr Mbandazayo. Mr Richard do you have any questions you'd like to put to the applicant?

MR RICHARD: I do Chairperson.

CHAIRPERSON: I see that it's almost 1 o'clock, would this be a convenient time to take a lunch adjournment?

MR RICHARD: I believe it's convenient. It's 1 o'clock.

CHAIRPERSON: I see it's 1 o'clock, we'll take the lunch adjournment now and if we could start at quarter to two?

MR RICHARD: I'm in agreement with that.

CHAIRPERSON: Thank you.

COMMITTEE ADJOURNS

MDUBEKI JOHANNES NTANTISO: (s.u.o.)

CHAIRPERSON: Thank you. Mr Richard?

CROSS-EXAMINATION BY MR RICHARD: Thank you.

Mr Ntantiso, I see from your application at page 8 that you were born in the township of Bopalong. Now how far away from Sebokeng is Bopalong?

MR NTANTISO: It's quite a distance but I cannot say for sure how much distance is involved.

MR RICHARD: Would you agree or disagree, it's about 10,15 kilometres away?

MR NTANTISO: I cannot dispute that and I cannot say yes.

MR RICHARD: But Bopalong is near Sebokeng, Sharpeville, they're all in the same area?

MR NTANTISO: Yes that is correct.

MR RICHARD: Now for how long did you live in Bopalong?

MR NTANTISO: I cannot remember, it's possible that we left in 1979 or in the '70s.

MR RICHARD: And then did you go to Sebokeng?

MR NTANTISO: We went to Everton before relocating to Sebokeng.

MR RICHARD: And now for how long did you live in Sebokeng?

MR NTANTISO: I cannot remember, Sir.

MR RICHARD: Was it one year, five years?

MR NTANTISO: Many years to such an extent that I cannot remember.

MR RICHARD: So it's true to say that you grew up in the Vaal Triangle, Everton?

MR NTANTISO: Yes that is correct.

MR RICHARD: Now where in Sebokeng precisely was the PAC office in 1993?

MR NTANTISO: Where this incident took place was in Zone 11 and the other one was in Zone 12 and the other office was in Everton.

CHAIRPERSON: So the office that you're talking about was the office that was in Zone 11?

MR NTANTISO: Yes that is correct.

MR RICHARD: And I see your address is given as Zone 11?

MR NTANTISO: Yes that is correct.

MR RICHARD: Now isn't it true to say that immediately across the way from the place where the PAC had it's office in Zone 11, there's a football field, a sports area?

MR NTANTISO: Yes that is correct.

MR RICHARD: Now how often had you been to the office in Zone 11? Was it once, twice or many, many times?

MR NTANTISO: I cannot say but I used to frequent the office.

MR RICHARD: Now the day in question, what time did you arrive at the office in Zone 11?

MR NTANTISO: I cannot say about the time but I think it was during daylight.

MR RICHARD: Was it in the morning or the afternoon?

MR NTANTISO: It was not in the morning but it was during the late hours of the morning.

MR RICHARD: The late hours of the morning? Is that your answer?

MR NTANTISO: It was in the morning but not very early in the morning.

MR RICHARD: Now were you aware that work was to be started on that football field in front of the PAC office to build a sports stadium?

MR NTANTISO: I knew nothing but that's why I was shocked.

MR RICHARD: What were you shocked about?

MR NTANTISO: I was shocked to see the whites inside the township because at the time whites wouldn't set their foot in the township. The only whites that would go into the township would be escorted by the ANC members.

MR RICHARD: Now at any rate we've now discovered that you arrived there late morning. Did you go away from the office?

MR NTANTISO: No.

MR RICHARD: Now if I tell you that that day there was a drilling rig on the football ground outside your office, a big machine, big truck?

MR NTANTISO: Yes that is so.

MR RICHARD: Now so that means you would agree with me that when the drilling rig gets ready to drill the hole in the ground it stands about two and a half stories high?

MR NTANTISO: I cannot say but I agree that there was a drilling machine.

MR RICHARD: And it was drilling the whole day then, making a lot of noise?

MR NTANTISO: Yes, I agree.

MR RICHARD: And did you see people around the drilling machine, working the machine and working in the holes that it had dug?

MR NTANTISO: Yes.

MR RICHARD: So you wouldn't dispute it if I told you that on that day the deceased, as a geologist, had a device, a tripod which would lower him down into the holes and he would go and take samples from the hole and he would come out, samples of soil?

MR NTANTISO: I know nothing about that.

MR RICHARD: Did you look at them drilling?

MR NTANTISO: No I was standing at a distance as they were working there.

MR RICHARD: But it wasn't more than one and a half football field lengths away?

MR NTANTISO: I went there to attack only, I didn't go there to observe people working there.

MR RICHARD: Now, it's also true that this Mercedes was parked very near the PAC's office, outside in fact?

MR NTANTISO: Yes that is correct.

CHAIRPERSON: Sorry, Mr Richard, if I could just ask a question?

This PAC office, what was it? Was it a high rise building with an office or was it situated in a house? If you could just describe the PAC office very briefly please?

MR NTANTISO: It was a building with a room. A building that was connected in some business building where the shops were.

MR RICHARD: Was that a one or two story high building, three storeys?

MR NTANTISO: It was just a single building.

MR RICHARD: Now where we had got to was that you were aware that this Mercedes was parked right outside near your office and you had noticed that?

MR NTANTISO: Yes I saw it parked in front of the offices and on the football ground.

MR RICHARD: Now how far from your office was the Mercedes? Can you estimate the distance?

MR NTANTISO: I cannot estimate in terms of metres because I don't know much about such measurements.

CHAIRPERSON: Can you point it out a distance in this room here?

MR NTANTISO: I don't want to commit myself because this incident took place some time ago.

MR RICHARD: Was it near or far?

MR NTANTISO: I think it was nearer, much nearer.

MR RICHARD: Thank you. Now what time of the afternoon did the shooting happen?

MR NTANTISO: I do not know but I think it was when he was preparing to leave.

MR RICHARD: Was that late afternoon or home time or just after lunch?

MR NTANTISO: It was in the afternoon.

MR RICHARD: Late afternoon, home time?

MR NTANTISO: Yes, home time.

MR RICHARD: Now if I ask you specifically, you've already given a description, what did you see the deceased wearing?

MR NTANTISO: I cannot remember.

CHAIRPERSON: Didn't you say he was wearing a uniform? I think that was my notes, there was mention made of them saying uniforms?

MR RICHARD: Yes.

MR NTANTISO: I didn't say that Van Wyk was in a khaki uniform but his two colleagues were wearing khaki clothes.

CHAIRPERSON: Yes my notes say

"When next to the PAC offices in Zone 11, two whites in khaki uniform came in two cars. Later another came in a Mercedes Benz."

But he didn't mention what the person who came in a Mercedes Benz was wearing.

MR RICHARD: Now if I put to you as a matter of fact and we can prove it if the need arise, that the deceased was wearing a blue worker's overall. Would you dispute that?

MR NTANTISO: I cannot dispute that because I cannot remember that.

MR RICHARD: Now you make a statement. You say the deceased had two colleagues. Now please tell us exactly why you say the other people were his colleagues?

MR NTANTISO: I am saying that because when he arrived he went straight to them and talked to them.

MR RICHARD: Now if I say he was there all day, what time do say he arrived?

MR NTANTISO: I've already said that I can't remember the time.

CHAIRPERSON: I think that from what he says it must be inferred that it was sometime either late morning or after that because he only arrived at the PAC offices in late morning, he said.

MR RICHARD: Well, can you give us some indication as to when you say you saw the deceased arrive?

MR NTANTISO: I'm trying to say that he came after these two white men who were in khaki clothes.

MR RICHARD: And what did he do then, after he spoke to these two people, according to your version?

MR NTANTISO: They started working with their lorries.

MR RICHARD: What were they doing with their lorries?

MR NTANTISO: I was not very much interested and I was not interested in all what they were doing.

MR RICHARD: But when you say they were working with their lorries, that's what you've said. What were they doing with their lorries?

MR NTANTISO: Their machine was on, the machine that you referred to was on and I don't know what is it that they were doing.

MR RICHARD: And how long was the deceased busy with his machines?

MR NTANTISO: I cannot recall.

MR RICHARD: I'll put it to you that in fact a Mr Maputa will say that he was busy for a long time with this machine all day? Do you dispute that?

MR NTANTISO: Do you want to say that we shot this person as he arrived or you want to say that we shot at this person as he was busy working?

MR RICHARD: Sir, I don't answer your questions. You answer my questions. My question was, do you dispute the statement that there is direct evidence available that he was busy with his drilling machine all day, for a long time?

MR NTANTISO: I did mention that when we shot at him it was during the time when he was about to leave.

MR RICHARD: That is not an answer to my question. My question to repeat it for the third time is do you dispute the statement that the deceased was busy with the drilling machine for a long time, in fact most of the day?

MR NTANTISO: I cannot dispute that.

MR RICHARD: And then it closed from that answer that it was patently and clearly obvious to anyone in that environment that he was busy with the drilling machine and that it was a matter of easy and ordinary observation to see it. The machine was making a big row and it was obvious to everyone? Do you dispute that?

MR NTANTISO: Which one?

MR RICHARD: My proposition is, do you dispute that if a man was busy with that machine most of the day, climbing in and out of the hole on this hoist, it would have been easy for anyone who had any ears and eyes to see, to see what he was doing?

MR NTANTISO: I want to say he was busy with the other people that he was working with there.

MR RICHARD: And you also said that you weren't very interested in what he was doing?

MR NTANTISO: Yes, I was not interested because I didn't even know what he was doing there.

MR RICHARD: Now what made you think that the deceased was likely to attack your office?

MR NTANTISO: As I have indicated that two white men came before him and then he later came and I became suspicious because there was an attack before that. Mbendalosa's children who were attacked by SADF members and they could do anything, they had so many tricks, they could even come closer to our offices so that they could manage to attack our offices.

MR RICHARD: Was the deceased alone when he was shot or with other people?

MR NTANTISO: He was with his colleagues, people who were working with him.

MR RICHARD: Who were these people?

MR NTANTISO: I do not know them.

MR RICHARD: Were they black or white?

MR NTANTISO: They were black.

MR RICHARD: Now what made you form the opinion that the deceased posed a threat, as you say he did, to your office? What was he doing to make you fear him?

MR NTANTISO: I've just mentioned about the incident that took place in Mbendalosa's premises in the Transkei. That is the reason that made me not to trust any situation.

CHAIRPERSON: Sorry, if I may just intervene, Mr Richard?

Didn't you say, Mr Ntantiso, that at the time the deceased was shot he was about to leave, his cars were locked in the car and they were trying to get the keys, that he was going to go away and that his other two white colleagues had already left?

MR NTANTISO: I became suspicious in the morning when he was with his three colleagues.

CHAIRPERSON: No, but I mean at the time of the shooting, were you of the impression that he was on his way out?

MR NTANTISO: Yes that is correct.

CHAIRPERSON: Mr Richard?

MR RICHARD: Thank you. Now if we turn to page 27 of the bundle, paragraph 5, you say there

"The two white men then departed. Van Wyk was then alone on the scene."

Do you confirm what you said in your statement?

MR NTANTISO: That is correct.

MR RICHARD: Now, then earlier on in that paragraph you describe the scene of people being around the car. What were they doing?

MR NTANTISO: Some of them were just standing, staring at what was happening there.

MR RICHARD: And what were the others doing?

MR NTANTISO: Most of them were just standing.

MR RICHARD: The ones who weren't just standing, what were they doing?

MR NTANTISO: People that I could see were the people who were standing.

MR RICHARD: Was anyone trying to get keys out of the car? What did you see to make you make that statement?

MR NTANTISO: Yes it is correct, that is why I'm saying when we came it was during the time he was trying to leave because on our arrival I realised that although I cannot remember if it was Van Wyk or somebody else who broke the car window to get the key that was inside the car.

MR RICHARD: Now in your affidavit you say you drove that car away, is that not correct?

MR NTANTISO: Yes that is correct.

MR RICHARD: Now which window was broken, according to your version?

CHAIRPERSON: I didn't hear that, if you could just repeat the question, Mr Richard?

MR RICHARD: The first question was, is it not correct that you drove the car away and he said yes and then I've asked the next question, which window was broken, according to his version.

MR NTANTISO: The window at the back, the very small window at the back.

CHAIRPERSON: The quarter window at the back.

MR RICHARD: On the left or the right?

MR NTANTISO: If I'm not mistaken it was the right window.

MR RICHARD: And now what would you say if I have witnesses who saw the car in the hands of the police after the incident who will swear that there were no windows broken at all?

MR NTANTISO: Those would be the witnesses who would be telling lies.

MR RICHARD: Very well. Now we go back to paragraph 5, the second last - well, it's not the second last sentence, the second last sentence in the first paragraph. There you say under oath

"When I climbed in the car the engine was already running".

So you're saying that when you climbed into the car the engine was already running?

MR NTANTISO: Yes.

MR RICHARD: Who had started the engine?

MR NTANTISO: It was Mr van Wyk.

MR RICHARD: Now when he was shot, was he in or out of the car?

MR NTANTISO: He was outside the car, standing next to the door of the car.

MR RICHARD: Why had he got out?

MR NTANTISO: I cannot tell.

MR RICHARD: If I put it to you that the correct version is he had got out and spoken to one of his workers who were drilling holes with him and told them to close the top of the holes so people wouldn't fall into it, would you dispute it?

MR NTANTISO: No, I know nothing about that. I cannot even recall that.

MR RICHARD: Did he talk to people while he was out of the car?

MR NTANTISO: I cannot recall.

MR RICHARD: Now where were you when he was standing next to the car?

MR NTANTISO: I was standing next to the car door.

MR RICHARD: Now did he get shot before you got into the car or after you got into the car?

MR NTANTISO: When he was being shot at I jumped into the car.

MR RICHARD: If I understand your answer you're saying he was shot while you were getting into the car. Is that your answer? Not before or after?

MR NTANTISO: When he was being shot or after being ...(intervention)

INTERPRETER: Sorry, I'd like to get it from the witness first before interpreting?

CHAIRPERSON: Sorry, Mr Ntantiso, if you could just repeat your answer please for the translators?

MR NTANTISO: I got into the car after he was shot.

MR RICHARD: I put it to you that it's a different answer to what you've just given as a question before? Then you said ...(intervention)

CHAIRPERSON: My notes are, is that

"when he was being shot at I jumped into the car."

MR RICHARD: Which of the two answers is correct?

MR NTANTISO: I am trying to explain that when he was being shot at I jumped into the car and then you are asking me again at what time did I get into the car.

CHAIRPERSON: Yes, there is a process of getting into the car and being in the car.

MR RICHARD: Right, if we go back to paragraph 5, at page 27, there's a sentence which says

"I then said to Tshabalala that as soon as I was behind the steering wheel of Van Wyk's car, Van Wyk must be shot."

CHAIRPERSON: Sorry, where about is that?

MR RICHARD: It's ...(intervention)

CHAIRPERSON: Oh yes, I see it there, sorry.

MR RICHARD

"I then said to Tshabalala that as soon as I was behind the

steering wheel of Van Wyk's car, Van Wyk must be shot,

which he then did."

In that one, if I read that and interpret it correctly, you were already behind the wheel when the shooting happened?

CHAIRPERSON: Maybe your Afrikaans is better than mine, Mr Richard, but my - is he saying that he said that after he was sitting or was this a pre-plan?

MR RICHARD: I understood that Chairperson - I'll just reread it

"I then said to Tshabalala that when I was behind the wheel of Van Wyk's motor car, Tshabalala must shoot"

That's how I've interpreted it.

CHAIRPERSON: Yes, alright.

MR RICHARD: Now in your affidavit you say that's what happened, you were behind the wheel already when Tshabalala shot Mr van Wyk?

MR NTANTISO: I think it's the mistake from the person who was writing down the statement.

MR RICHARD: Now tell me, once you drove the car away, where did you go to? How far away did you take the car, where did you take it to?

MR NTANTISO: I went to park the car at Zone 4.

MR RICHARD: And then did you turn the car off then? You had the keys?

MR NTANTISO: Yes I switched the car off.

MR RICHARD: And when did you try and turn on the car again?

MR NTANTISO: In the evening.

MR RICHARD: And what happened?

MR NTANTISO: It couldn't start.

MR RICHARD: Do you know why it couldn't start?

MR NTANTISO: If I'm not mistaken I think the problem was with the immobiliser and the secret switch.

MR RICHARD: That is quite correct. I can tell that I also have a witness that will say, if need be, that this particular Mercedes had a very particularly unique immobiliser which meant that you had to put one finger on one contact and another finger on another contact to activate the circuit and that unless you knew what you were doing you would never start the car and for that reason you in fact pulled out the wires under the dashboard to try and hot wire it. Would you dispute that?

MR NTANTISO: No, we connected one wire to the battery and the other one to the coil and then the car could start thereafter.

MR RICHARD: But what it also means is that Mr van Wyk had had to get into the car to start it before he was shot and get out again. Would you dispute that? And that's in fact what you saw him do?

MR NTANTISO: I do not know that, we did not know that the car had an immobiliser.

MR RICHARD: Do you dispute that to start the car Mr van Wyk first got into the car, started the car and then got out again before he was shot and you saw it, you were standing next to the car?

MR NTANTISO: As I have indicated that when this was happening, the car was on or rather idling.

MR RICHARD: Is it not correct that you said you were standing next to the car?

MR NTANTISO: Yes, that is true.

MR RICHARD: And you were watching what was happening?

MR NTANTISO: Yes.

MR RICHARD: Now I say to you that on the basis of what you saw and on the evidence that I can lead, if it's necessary of the immobiliser, it meant that you must have seen him get into the car and out of the car and started while inside?

MR NTANTISO: I cannot recall whether he started the car as I was standing there and I cannot see him operating, doing anything or fiddling with the secret switches or whatever.

MR RICHARD: Was he inside the car when he started the car?

You were standing there watching him, you were about to steal the motor car and attack him according to your version?

MR NTANTISO: I cannot recall, this incident took place some time ago.

MR RICHARD: And that would mean that you're not in a position to contradict a witness who would gave a version that it was necessary to do that to start the car, in other words to climb into the car, activate the car by getting rid of the ...(intervention)

MR NTANTISO: I cannot dispute that.

MR RICHARD: And that means, the fact that you didn't see it is simply that you can't remember it because it's so long ago?

MR NTANTISO: Yes that is correct.

MR RICHARD: Now while you were getting into the car or in the car, where was Mr Tshabalala.

MR NTANTISO: They were retreating on foot as planned but I was going to use the car and they were going to walk.

MR RICHARD: We know ...(intervention)

CHAIRPERSON: Sorry, Mr Richard, if I may once again just intervene briefly before I forget?

MR RICHARD: Yes Chairperson.

CHAIRPERSON: You say that they were retreating on foot according to plan. When did you actually formulate the plan to steal the car?

MR NTANTISO: The stealing of the car was not planned but we only planned that we were going to kill Mr van Wyk and his colleagues.

MR RICHARD: When was that plan formulated?

MR NTANTISO: When he was still busy there on the football ground.

MR RICHARD: Before I go to that, where was Mr Tshabalala standing when he shot Mr van Wyk?

MR NTANTISO: He was next to me, he was in front of me.

MR RICHARD: How far away?

MR NTANTISO: Nearer, much nearer.

MR RICHARD: One metre, two metres?

MR NTANTISO: I do not want to commit myself but he was much nearer.

MR RICHARD: Was he distance of one of the tables or half the table?

MR NTANTISO: He was just a the distance where my legal representative is.

CHAIRPERSON: That is immediately next to him. There's a matter of centimetres between the two of them, less than 30 centimetres between the two of them.

MR NTANTISO: And that would mean that Mr Tshabalala was right next to you at the right hand door of the car?

MR NTANTISO: Yes that is correct.

MR RICHARD: Now how far away from Mr Tshabalala was Mr van Wyk?

MR NTANTISO: He was not far but I cannot say how many metres.

MR RICHARD: Again, if we use the table as a measure, was he one table away, two tables away, across the room?

MR NTANTISO: He was much nearer though I cannot say, I cannot estimate but he was much nearer.

MR RICHARD: Can you point between yourself and the interpreters? Point a distance that Mr van Wyk was away?

CHAIRPERSON: This is just an approximate, Mr Ntantiso, it's not an exact amount, we just want an estimation of the distance between Mr Tshabalala and the deceased at the time the deceased was shot?

MR NTANTISO: I do not think he was beyond that line. There's a line on the floor.

CHAIRPERSON: Is this the red line on the floor?

MR NTANTISO: Yes, the red line on the floor. I cannot say he was beyond that point.

CHAIRPERSON: That's - I don't know if counsel agrees, about three metres? Three and half metres?

MR RICHARD: Three to three and a half metres.

CHAIRPERSON: Yes.

MR RICHARD: Now did you see Mr van Wyk being shot? Did you witness the shot?

MR NTANTISO: I saw him falling and screaming.

MR RICHARD: Now where in his body did the shoot gun blast hit him? Was it on his head, his chest, where?

MR NTANTISO: In the leg.

MR RICHARD: Now to help you I can say that according to those who identified him after his death, there was a tourniquet about mid-thigh which is above the wound. So would you agree when you say in the leg he was shot somewhere below the mid-thigh?

MR NTANTISO: I cannot dispute that.

MR RICHARD: Now while you were in Transkei, you received weapons training, is that correct?

MR NTANTISO: Yes that is correct.

MR RICHARD: Now did that entail being given the opportunity to practise using the weapon?

MR NTANTISO: Yes that is correct.

MR RICHARD: And Mr Tshabalala was given the same training?

MR NTANTISO: Yes.

MR RICHARD: So wouldn't you agree with me that a distance of some three, three and a half metres, if someone was shot below mid-thigh with a shotgun, that was a deliberately aimed shot?

MR NTANTISO: That is correct.

MR RICHARD: Now you said to me that you had decided earlier that day to kill Mr van Wyk and his other so-called colleagues?

MR NTANTISO: That is correct.

MR RICHARD: Now if you intended to kill a man would you shoot him in the lower leg?

CHAIRPERSON: The lower thigh.

MR RICHARD: The lower thigh.

MR NTANTISO: Let me explain this. As he was being shot at he was not the only person there at the scene. There were other people there from the township. I cannot answer for Tshabalala because he was the one who was pulling the trigger, he was the one who knew how did it come about for him to shoot him in the lower thigh.

MR RICHARD: My question is that if you shoot at a man to kill somebody like you had decided to do, do you shoot him in the lower thigh between the thigh and the knee?

MR NTANTISO: He is asking what you would do if you were shooting to kill somebody, would you shoot him just above the knee?

MR NTANTISO: It depends on the environment and you'll have to consider the safety of the other people who are not your targets.

CHAIRPERSON: Sorry, Mr Richard.

This pump gun, what sort of gun was it? Was it shotgun? What sort of bullet did it shoot?

MR NTANTISO: Pellets. It produced pellets.

CHAIRPERSON: So it was a shotgun with a pump action.

MR RICHARD: Right. Thank you Chairperson.

Now where in the Transkei were you trained. In which town or village?

MR NTANTISO: In Port St Johns.

MR RICHARD: And for how long were you there for training?

MR NTANTISO: Two months.

MR RICHARD: Now what were the various things that you were trained in?

MR NTANTISO: How to operate a firearm.

MR RICHARD: And what else?

MR NTANTISO: How to administer handgrenades.

MR RICHARD: And what else?

MR NTANTISO: Respect discipline.

MR RICHARD: And what tactics were you taught. To use your words "fight the system in place, at the time." What were the tactics you were taught to use?

MR NTANTISO: The tactics to fight the system was to attack his instrument or subject so that they could get the message.

MR RICHARD: To attack the systems instruments. What are the system's instruments?

MR NTANTISO: Those were the people who had voted for that government or the white people.

MR RICHARD: Now I'm going to separate that into two. The people who had voted the government into power, in your mind at the time who had voted the government into power?

MR NTANTISO: white people.

MR RICHARD: Did that mean that every white person had voted the government into power?

MR NTANTISO: He had done that by choice. Whoever did not vote for that government was by choice.

MR RICHARD: I don't understand your answer. Are you saying that white people had a choice to vote for the government or against the government and some voted for the government and some voted against the government. Is that your answer?

MR NTANTISO: All the whites were represented in the parliament, they had their own representatives in parliament, all of them.

MR RICHARD: So that means that in your mind there was no such thing as a white person who didn't vote for the government?

MR NTANTISO: Any person who wouldn't vote, that was his right but all the white people were given the right to vote.

MR RICHARD: Now do you agree with me that some white people voted for the government and some didn't vote at all and some voted against the government?

MR NTANTISO: I'm getting that for the first time from you, Sir.

MR RICHARD: Tell me, prior to 1994, is it not true that there were white people who opposed the government?

MR NTANTISO: Yes that is correct.

MR RICHARD: And some of the people who opposed the government used their vote as a method of opposition - one of the methods, in other words by not voting or spoiling their paper or voting for another party besides that party?

MR NTANTISO: If you want us to talk about the 1994 situation about the white people who did not vote for the National Party, most white people who joined the ANC joined it because they wanted to protect their business interests.

MR RICHARD: I'm talking about before 1994, I'm not talking about 1994.

MR NTANTISO: I do not know anything that was taking place in the parliament before 1994 because at the time I was fighting in the jungle, I did not have any representative in parliament.

MR RICHARD: Do you say that Sebokeng is the jungle?

MR NTANTISO: When I say that was in the jungle, I'm trying to say that Pan Africanist Congress and the ANC were in the jungle together with AZAPO.

MR RICHARD: Now we are looking at this question. Why did you shoot Mr van Wyk?

MR NTANTISO: It is solely because Sabelo Pama declared 1993 as the Year of the Great Storm.

MR RICHARD: Be careful, you have said it is solely because Mr Pama declared 1993 as the Year of the Great Storm. Is that your answer, is that the only reason why you shot Mr van Wyk?

MR NTANTISO: Let me explain this concept. If 1993 was declared as the Year of the Great Storm, the meaning was like anyone who felt oppressed should direct violence to the government by all means.

MR RICHARD: Now on that rationale, you've agreed that some white people didn't support the government?

MR NTANTISO: What people are those?

MR RICHARD: Are you saying all white people supported the government prior to 1994? The old government?

MR NTANTISO: Even those who were opposing that government, they were killed.

MR RICHARD: So you were prepared to kill your allies simply because they were white?

MR NTANTISO: The whites were opposing the Nationalist government? Are you talking about those?

MR RICHARD: Yes.

MR NTANTISO: I couldn't kill them because they were also fighting in the liberation struggle, they were also fighting for freedom.

MR RICHARD: Now when you saw a man drilling holes to build a sports stadium, how do you know which way he voted, whether he supported the government or not?

MR NTANTISO: First of all I didn't even know what his intention was by drilling the holes. All I knew was that the government was in power, that particular person was benefiting in that government.

MR RICHARD: Then your answer is that you wanted to shoot Mr Pama to kill him ...(intervention)

CHAIRPERSON: Mr van Wyk.

MR RICHARD: Mr van Wyk, for no reason other than that he was white?

MR NTANTISO: No, when he was killed we were trying to overthrow the then government.

MR RICHARD: How would killing one white man who is alone in Sebokeng at the time.

JUDGE MOTATA: I think you should, Mr Richard, ask that question bearing in mind what he said earlier, that one of the tactics was to kill these people even if they are individuals. That's the tenor of his answer, that to send the message. Now I don't think it would be in context if you were to say one white man because he has put that into context that that would send a message to the government.

MR RICHARD: Chairperson, with the greatest of respect, well that might be a construction of his answer. There are other constructions which are equally probable and apparent and I would like to hear what the witness says for himself?

CHAIRPERSON: Yes, just repeat the question.

MR NTANTISO: Please repeat the question, Sir?

MR RICHARD: Now my question is simple. Why did you kill Mr van Wyk?

MR NTANTISO: When Van Wyk was killed the intention was to overthrow the then government.

MR RICHARD: My next question is how did you see the killing of Mr van Wyk would achieve that end?

MR NTANTISO: He was not the only target there were also other people. For instance the St James incident, Helderberg Tavern and even his colleagues, they had a narrow escape because they were not present during the shooting.

ADV SANDI: Sorry Mr Richard, if I could just come in here?

MR RICHARD: Certainly Chairperson.

ADV SANDI: Why did you not attack Mr van Wyk at the time his other white colleagues were also there?

MR NTANTISO: They couldn't waste time there, they just came for a short while and they left. For us to shoot Mr van Wyk later, it is because we were waiting for the other two to come back so that we could attack them altogether but unfortunately the other two did not come back, that is why we decided to attack at least Mr van Wyk.

JUDGE MOTATA: Now the truck that was there drilling a rig, who was operating the rig, who was operating that truck?

MR NTANTISO: I have no knowledge.

JUDGE MOTATA: Did you not see people around that truck, whether white or black?

MR NTANTISO: The only white there was Mr van Wyk.

JUDGE MOTATA: Are you saying that the only person you saw was Mr van Wyk?

CHAIRPERSON: He said the only white person there was Mr van Wyk.

JUDGE MOTATA: Oh, sorry. Thank you. You may proceed Mr Richard.

MR RICHARD: Thank you Chairperson.

ADV SANDI: Sorry, if you don't mind Mr Richard?

Just explain here, was he - Mr van Wyk, was he assaulted before he was shot?

MR NTANTISO: No.

ADV SANDI: Thank you.

MR RICHARD: Now if you turn to page 31 of the bundle, you'll see that amongst the things that were removed was one brown wallet and one men's wristwatch. Now where were the wristwatch and the wallet found?

MR NTANTISO: They were in the car next to the gear lever.

MR RICHARD: And when you drove the car and turned it off and got out did you take the watch and the wallet out with you?

MR NTANTISO: I saw these articles when I was packing the car and I took them.

MR RICHARD: And how much money was in the wallet?

MR NTANTISO: There was no money, it was just a wallet and the wristwatch.

MR RICHARD: And where did you put the wristwatch once you took it?

MR NTANTISO: I kept it for some time.

MR RICHARD: For how long?

MR NTANTISO: For that night because the following day I was arrested and then it was confiscated.

MR RICHARD: In other words you had appropriated the watch to yourself?

MR NTANTISO: No, not at all.

MR RICHARD: What were you going to do with the watch?

MR NTANTISO: I was going to give it to my commander because we were about to go to Transkei with the car.

MR RICHARD: Who was your commander?

MR NTANTISO: Judge Makakuna.

MR RICHARD: Where was Judge Makakuna?

MR NTANTISO: We were going to meet in the Transkei at the funeral of Mr Mbendalosa's children.

CHAIRPERSON: That was held in Umtata, Mr Richard.

MR RICHARD: Thank you.

Thank you Chairperson, I think I've more or less concluded but before concluding ...(intervention)

CHAIRPERSON: You can consult.

MR RICHARD: No further questions.

NO FURTHER QUESTIONS BY MR RICHARD

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

MR MAPOMA: None Chairperson.

NO QUESTIONS BY MR MAPOMA

CHAIRPERSON: Mr Mbandazayo, do you have any re-examination?

MR MBANDAZAYO: None Chairperson.

NO RE-EXAMINATION BY MR MBANDAZAYO

CHAIRPERSON: Judge Motata, do you have any questions you would like to put to the applicant?

JUDGE MOTATA: Just one Chairperson, thank you.

Mr Ntantiso, the next day where were you driving the car to because it was parked at Zone 12. When you took it from Zone 12 where were you taking the car to?

MR NTANTISO: We took it that very same day, parked it at Everton on that very same day after the incident.

JUDGE MOTATA: Didn't I perhaps make a mistake - I may have, that you said you took it to Zone 12, Sebokeng?

MR NTANTISO: I took it Zone 12 during the day and then in the evening we took the car to Everton.

JUDGE MOTATA: To who at Everton? I'll tell you why I'm asking you that because somewhere in the papers I read that you were going to use it as transport to attend a funeral in the Transkei. In Umtata in the Transkei?

MR NTANTISO: Where I had initially parked the car in Zone 12 there was no garage, it was the open space and at least in Everton it was protected and we would wait, it would wait there until the day of leaving for the funeral comes.

JUDGE MOTATA: Where precisely in Everton where it would be protected?

MR NTANTISO: Next to the graveyard.

JUDGE MOTATA: Is there a garage at the graveyard, because at Zone 12 there was no garage?

MR NTANTISO: At that stand or site there was a garage.

JUDGE MOTATA: Who lived there?

MR NTANTISO: It was Linda's relative.

JUDGE MOTATA: Was it arranged with Linda's relative that you would bring a vehicle, motor vehicle to be parked in their garage?

MR NTANTISO: Linda told us that it was a good idea to take it there. We did not know whether he had prearranged that with the relatives or not.

JUDGE MOTATA: Did you reach Everton?

MR NTANTISO: Yes.

JUDGE MOTATA: Parked it in the garage?

MR NTANTISO: Yes.

JUDGE MOTATA: Thank you Chairperson, I've got no further questions.

CHAIRPERSON: Mr Sandi, do you have any questions you'd like to ask?

ADV SANDI: Yes Chairperson, maybe one or two.

CHAIRPERSON: Was this your first operation as a member of APLA?

MR NTANTISO: Except for transporting guns or weapons, it was the first operation there in killing of the settler.

ADV SANDI: Just explain something to me here. Did you see the deceased as a threat? Did he pose a danger to you or anyone in that vicinity?

MR NTANTISO: The manner in which the three of them came, we saw them as a threat in our office because the PAC offices those days were subject of frequent attacks and even the PAC members were being attacked by the police and SADF members.

ADV SANDI: Is that the reason why you attacked Mr van Wyk?

MR NTANTISO: This is just one of the reasons for us to attack him.

ADV SANDI: If you did not feel that he was posing a danger to you and your PAC offices, would you still have attacked him?

MR NTANTISO: Yes we were still going to attack him.

ADV SANDI: Thank you. Thank you Chairperson, no further questions.

CHAIRPERSON: Mr Mbandazayo, any questions arising out of questions that have been put by Members of the Panel?

MR MBANDAZAYO: None Chairperson.

NO QUESTIONS BY MBANDAZAYO

CHAIRPERSON: Mr Richard, any questions arising?

MR RICHARD: None Chairperson.

NO QUESTIONS BY RICHARD

CHAIRPERSON: Mr Mapoma?

MR MAPOMA: None Chairperson.

NO QUESTIONS BY MAPOMA

CHAIRPERSON: Thank you Mr Ntantiso, that concludes your evidence. You may stand down. If you would just swop seats with Mr Tshabalala?

WITNESS EXCUSED

 
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