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Type AMNESTY HEARINGS
Starting Date 10 February 1997
MR BRINK: Mr Chair, members of the Committee, this is the...(talking in background - no microphone)...and I understand that my learned colleague will be asking for this matter to stand down for a short while to take instructions from Mr Madlala.
MR BANADE:: Mr Chairman I am Banade from the Free State Bar. I am acting on the instructions of Goodrick Franklin of Bloemfontein on behalf of Mr Harrington and Erasmus at this Committee meeting. I have received complete instructions from them with regard to the aspects which have to be covered here today, although it was at short notice we consulted on Saturday. When we got here, we discovered the friend Mr Madlala here and he asked me if I would assist him as well. Unfortunately I have been unable to have a brief with him, I just got here this morning and I just briefly discussed with him what was going on here but I have been unable to consult with him and take proper instructions, thus in the light of the request by Mr Madlala I would like to request a short adjournment to enable me to consult with him. If I could get at least half an hour just to get an idea of the evidence that is to be led, I would like the Committee to consider this request please.
INTERPRETER:: There seems to be something wrong with the earphones, the witness is not getting the interpretation from the booth. Zulu is supposed to be in channel 3 from his apparatus. He is getting the interpretation now.
CHAIRMAN:: ...to afford him an opportunity to do so by adjourning this hearing, but I want to be satisfied, my Committee wants to be satisfied that you do want to be represented and that you are quite happy that you should be represented by Mr Banade?
CHAIRMAN:: Very well. Mr Banade we will adjourn to enable you to have an opportunity to discuss and take instructions from Mr Madlala. If it transpires in the course of your instructions that there may be a conflict of interest between one or other of the applicants, you will then have to advise us on what you propose doing.
MR BRINK:: Thank you Mr Chairman, we are very thankful to you for this adjournment and I will let you know as soon as we are ready to proceed. We will adjourn and we will come in as soon as counsel tell us that they are ready to proceed.
MR BANADE:: Mr Chairman I thank you for the opportunity to consult, we have done so and I am ready to lead his evidence. May I inform you at this stage, since the amnesty application form with regards to Mr Madlala is unclear that he was applying for amnesty with regard to the murder on Jama and also the murder on 24 February 1991. We will look at that. If you are then prepared to proceed, I would like to ask Mr Harrington to be sworn in so that we can deal with his evidence first and then Mr Erasmus and Mr Madlala. It has been cleared up as such with them as well, if you accept it as such.
CHAIRMAN:: Mr Banade will you ensure that before we proceed with his evidence that a legible application form on behalf of Madlala is handed in because I understand the form that he's made available to us is a very, very poor copy and it's difficult to read what he said.
MR BANADE:: Mr Chairman I will do so, since we are going to start with Mr Harrington and Erasmus, I assume that there will be a break as we proceed with the day's hearing and I will obtain a form and assisting him in filling it in. As you please.
MR DE JAGER:: Mr Banade you say that you are going on with the application for amnesty with regard to the offence of murder. Is that the only amnesty Mr Harrington is applying for or are you applying for the other aspects which he mentioned, the third force activities, "C" Annexure.
MR BANADE:: Mr Chairman the main application is with regard to the murder of Jama on 24 February 1991. Mr Harrington has indicated in his application, has indicated about third force activities and I have cleared it up with him this morning and I will take it up with him directly, whether the third force activities which he refers to have got anything to do with UDF and ANC members over a period of time, specifically before this date. He cannot specify that Mr X and Y were assaulted on any specific dates, he cannot be specific. We will not be able to point out the victims that is why I agreed with him that if the Committee so
pleases, because the spectrum of third force activities is so wide that we will deal mainly with the murder of Jama of 24 February. I would also like to mention to you that Mr Harrington and not Mr Erasmus has been cleared with regard to assault, as far as I know things that happened before 24 February, he has been acquitted.
MR DE JAGER:: I do not have a problem with that, the fact is that if he is not applying for a specific action is he aware that should he be granted amnesty that he can be prosecuted for the other actions? I do not know if it was part of third force activities, but if you are going to give us specific incidents, he cannot be granted amnesty for incidents for which he has not applied. If it is not clear that is why I am asking because as it is set out here it is not too clear and you have to clear it up because we cannot grant amnesty for third force activities. (The speaker's microphone is not on)...
MR BANADE:: If it is an official decision by the Committee and I'd like to find out if it is, then I would like to consult with them briefly with regard to this aspect, but we will stick to the application for the murder on Jama.
CHAIRMAN:: Mr Banade, what is being said to you in terms of the Act, we can only grant amnesty in respect of specific offences, much as we would like to deal with things at a globular level, we are not entitled to do that, there has to be an application for a specific offence. It is in respect of each specific offence that the Committee considers whether he's entitled to amnesty and may refuse or grant it. I think that is the only way this can be done.
MR BRINK:: ...indicate shortly before the Committee reconvened for this session I was approached by a gentleman who is a member of the KwaZulu Parliament. He tells me that the mother of the late Jama, who is here, her attorney apparently will only be here at 2 o'clock this afternoon, for some reason he's not here. I merely mention that for what it's worth, I don't know whether one should wait until 2 o'clock before we commence?
CHAIRMAN:: No I do not think that the Act says we must wait because attorneys are not here, she is here, the evidence will be made available or known to her and we must now start moving. The attorney may not even turn up at 2 o'clock and then what happens? I think we must just make a beginning and see how far we can get. It may be that between now and 2 o'clock whatever evidence is going to be led may not concern directly her or her interests. Be that as it may, I think we should make a beginning.
MR BANADE:: Mr Chairman if I can just inform you very broadly. I informed Mr Harrington and Erasmus before the time to concentrate or give their evidence on specific points. They will continue along that vein in their own time and it will not be necessary for me to interject with questions from time to time. I would like to mention that the main points which will be touched upon will be firstly the offence for which amnesty is being applied. Secondly, with regard to each and everyone's personal background. Thirdly, the factors political and otherwise which had bearing on them and made them the persons that they were in February 1991. The following will, they will probably deal
with as far as 24 February 1991, as far as what happened there and also what was going through their minds. In conclusion the last aspect I informed them of Section 23 of the Act and asked them to remain within that context to say what their motive was and what the context was and what the objective was at the time. Mr Chairman very briefly that is my introduction and I would like to ask Mr Harrington to be sworn in.
QUESTION:: Mr Harrington could you please proceed and concentrate on these points in giving your evidence under oath as it's been cleared up with you. We only want the truth as far as this application is concerned. I would like to ask the panel on his behalf are you people writing this thing down word for word or at which speed may he go?
ANSWER:: The offence which I am applying for amnesty is the murder on Mr Jama, a self-proclaimed ANC member. Personal background is I was born on 18 May 1969 in Swaziland. I am currently 27 years old. I grew up mainly in the Eastern Transvaal and Natal farm areas. I matriculated in Volksrus in 1987. My political affiliations since my youth and today still is in my high school years I was (a) politically right and as a young man between the age of 18 and 28 I was affiliated to the right. At the time of the murder I was affiliated to the right as far as anti-ANC feelings were concerned and I am currently a non-active AWB member. My address is Grootvlei Prison, Bloemfontein. My home address is 67 Colonel Brand Avenue, Uitsig. My parents are Mr W B Harrington at the abovementioned address, he's a businessman. My mother Mrs T Harrington is at the time of my sentence passed away on 23 January 1985. She was also a business person. Very shortly my career; in 1987 on 23 December I joined the police force in Newcastle shortly after I had matriculated. I went to the police college from January 1987 to June 1988. I went to Pietermaritzburg...
MEMBER OF COMMISSION:: Could you please just go a bit slower we would like to write down what you are saying, you don't have to go at a snail's pace but just a bit slower than you are going at the moment.
ANSWER:: Directly after the, I was deployed to the Riot Squad in Pietermaritzburg although I had requested working at the station in Newcastle, I was deployed at Unit 8 at the time of my arrest in 1988, on 8 March. I was sentenced in 1992 on 28 February and if I should be freed I would join my father in his business. The factors that surrounded me at the time of this, when I was a child I read a book named "Die Grensvegter", which was about a man fighting at the border. The daily news coverage by the media covered ANC offences. I myself after matric wanted to fight terrorism and wanted a career in the police, although I wanted to be a priest when I was a child. At the police college and the training which I received there, the ANC was, I was informed about the ANC as a terrorist organisation and the enemy of our country. I was also educated as to their weapons and their agenda as to the UDF affiliate. Another factor which affected me was Major Deon Terblanche, former Chief of the Riot Squad, his death. He was more than that, he was a father-figure in my life since my father and I did not get along too well. My father was a Nationalist and he did not have the same standards as Terblanche as far as our politics and the kind of work we did from day to day. The impression which I got from Major Deon was that he would act as my father if there was any assault charge against me. My own father would have questioned my activities. There were also regular visits by Inkatha chiefs and leaders at the Riot Squad with Major Deon and Danie Meyer. The
meetings were very friendly and also comfortable. My first impressions were that we could be comfortable with the Inkatha but not the ANC. In my first week at the Riot Squad when I started working there I was already involved in a shooting incident. This information I already made available to the Truth Commission with regard to this specific incident in 1996. People fired at us and we were instructed to fire back, that was my first combat, we knew that the ANC and the UDF wanted to shoot at us. Deon Terblanche was murdered by an ANC police officer in 1985, he was shot on the freeway in Durban on his way to Durban. When I heard this news I was devastated. My police father was murdered cold-bloodedly by a permanent police member, Ngcobo. Ngcobo was identified as an ANC member at the Unit and he was removed from patrol work and had to do duty at our garage. The intention was to keep an eye on him. Shortly thereafter he asked Major Deon for a lift and he shot him then. I sobbed bitterly there and also at his grave. I started drinking and my indoctrination of the ANC was at breaking point, but not just myself, the whole Unit had lost a father and we were all deployed(?). At the Riot Squad there were special constables who worked there. All these special constables were Inkatha supporters and card-carrying members. There was not one ANC special constable on duty. A good policeman at the Unit was identified by the amount of hours of hard work he had put in and definitely you had to be anti-ANC in a very strong manner, otherwise you would also be removed from ANC patrol duties, the same as Ray Ngcobo. In my line of duty it was normal procedure to search ANC houses and people and also detain people for questioning. Thereafter, people would be
assaulted and gross human rights violations committed on them. At the Unit it was normal procedure to take firearms from ANC members and give them to the Inkatha or sell them to the Inkatha. I did not start the system I was taught as such by the older policemen and I myself taught this to my juniors. Now I would like to concentrate on the events of the murder of Mr Jama in February 1991. I and my passengers in my vehicle had to monitor a march of the ANC of approximately 2 000 members. When we, when the ANC members arrived at the meeting my group of special constables were dancing in a circle with their firearms and shouting slogans such as "viva Inkatha". The ANC spokesperson approached me and asked me to please contain my members because they were inflicting the ANC members. I did that. The afternoon at 16:00 the meeting dispersed. The group was escorted out of the IFP area so that they did not attack anyone. After approximately a five minute drive we got to a rail crossing near Dambuza where a group of approximately, we encountered a group of approximately
10 men. Some of them were dressed in T-shirts of the ANC. Mr Erasmus stopped the vehicle and Mr Jama, who was later identified to us, quickly put his hand in the back of his pants when he saw us. He appeared very suspicious to us and that is when Mr F S Erasmus stopped, everyone got out and searched the group. Mr Jama refused to be searched. Mr Erasmus slapped him. Some of the special constables held him so that he could be searched. I decided to load Jama in the back of the vehicle with the special constables for further questioning, although Mr Madlala mentioned a certain aspect which I will mention later. Mr Erasmus then continued and myself and Mr Madlala encountered a pocketbook
on Mr Jama. He had made certain entries in there, inter alia that he was involved in terrorism acts where he had attacked Inkatha members and had attacked their places of residence and burned them. Thereafter we started assaulting Jama..
MR BANADE:: Mr Harrington could I ask you to please read it sentence for sentence, according to Judge Mall's pen please and if you see that it seems as if he has finished that sentence, you can proceed to the next sentence.
CHAIRMAN:: I think we'd better do the best we can, let him talk...(end side a)...and I think in all fairness to all the members of the Committee it would be better if we did have both his statement and all the other witnesses that you propose calling if they have statements.
MR BANADE:: Mr Chairman it is a copy and if you could see on the first page it's marked "Harrington" and contains everything he has said up until now and he will now proceed if you so please from page 6 onwards, in the middle, line 15 of page 6. Mr Harrington could I then ask you to proceed, thank you to the panel.
ANSWER:: Erasmus then proceeded to drive and Madlala and I came across a pocketbook in Jama's pocket. In it was written that he was involved in acts of terrorism with a combat group in the Richmond area. Due to this information the specials and I started assaulting Jama for more information about the activities mentioned and for his and the other people's weapons. The specials labelled him an "ANC dog". Jama caused a scene and screamed. Erasmus stopped the vehicle, got out and opened the back door and slapped Jama and said that he should not make such a noise.
Erasmus then proceeded to drive to the Elandskop area to go and pick up the next shift of special constables. From there to the pick-up point it was approximately a 15 minute drive. In this time I took Jama's belt and strangled him with breaks in between, just to give him a chance to answer questions which I put to him. Erasmus stopped at the mentioned pick-up point, which was a bottle store. I informed Erasmus about the pocketbook and the content thereof and that we had thrown the book out while we were driving. Jama, according to special constable Nglamini, he saw Jama trying to grab his shotgun. Jama failed and then jumped out the back. He ran around the vehicle straight into Erasmus. Jama was then loaded into the back of the vehicle again and then Bengu and Madlala went with the vehicle to Bengu's father's shop which was not too far from there, to go and get us some cold drinks. When they returned, we stood conversing in a little group. Erasmus mentioned that we had to kill Jama. We as a group of eight policemen took a joint decision that we were going to kill Mr Jama. Madlala said that he was going to shoot him. Special constable Bengu said that he knew of an appropriate place where we could shoot Jama. Bengu then got into the front with Erasmus and Van der Hoogen, who was the other policeman, to show them the place and myself and the others got into the back and I continued to strangle Jama. After approximately five minutes' drive we stopped in a bush deep in Inkatha area, called Elandskop. I called, I dragged Jama out of the back, still with the belt around his neck and he fell on his back on the ground and I continued to strangle him. I got up and Jama suddenly jumped up again and started running deeper into the bush. Erasmus drew his
9mm and aimed so that he could shoot Jama and I shouted that he should not do that because they could conduct ballistic tests. I ran after Jama and Madlala followed. I dived at Jama and strangled him again for a while. The others then came to the scene and I stood up straight with my one foot on his chest and throat. Nglamini had his shotgun with him. I told Madlala to shoot the ANC dog. Madlala took the shotgun from Nglamini, before the shot was fired the rest of us started strolling back to the vehicle. I looked back and saw Madlala standing over Jama with the shotgun approximately 1cm from Jama's forehead and the shot went off. Back at the vehicle everyone got in. I took loose branches to try and erase the tracks of the vehicle. Back on the tarred road we offloaded the special constables and in our conversation we agreed that no one was going to say anything about the murder. Our permanent members went back to the Unit and went off duty. My feeling and state of mind at the time when we decided to kill Mr Jama at the bottle store and up until the time when he was murdered in the bush; when we picked Mr Jama up at the railway in Dambuza it was mere procedure to me to pick up ANC members for questioning and also assault, with the intention of obtaining more firearms and handing them to the Inkatha. The feeling and state of mind at the bottle store; here we the policemen were sitting with an enemy, a self-proclaimed communist, plus/minus three years indoctrination against the ANC exploded inside me. Major Terblanche was murdered by an ANC member, surfaced within me again. I was angry. I had to fight the enemy, the ANC. I decided yes, let's kill him. My indoctrination was my state of mind and not my motive. The ANC feels the same about us, it was either my
life or Jama's life kind of situation at the time. How I felt when we were in the bush; after the strangulation and the death shot I felt relieved, I had made my contribution towards blocking the ANC's objectives. I was also a border fighter. We drove away. Tomorrow was just another day, with more enemies to conquer. I was not worried about being prosecuted for a murder or an assault case, I did what I had to do, it was what was expected of me indirectly. In conclusion my motive and the context in which I committed this act; I wanted Mr Jama to die in the hands of the Inkatha specials and our rightwing policemen. He represented the whole of the ANC which not only attacks me and my men, but also the cause of Major Terblanche's death at their hands. Also Inkatha establishments and members of their families were killed and burned in their houses by the ANC. I was taught that the ANC was "the enemy". The nature of the offence; Mr Jama was first assaulted and then strangled by me with his belt and then with my bare hands and then he was shot with a single shot from a shotgun in his forehead. The objective of the deed; I had proof that Mr Jama was an ANC member by means of his ANC T-shirt and the pocketbook in his pocket. He was my political opponent as I was taught and since we, together with the IFP, were at war with the ANC, proof in his pocketbook was that he had participated in rallies in the Richmond area, in attacks against the IFP and the knowledge amongst us policemen was that Mr Jama had to be killed. He had to give us more information on the firearm which he had used and also the firearms which his colleagues used. On 10 February 1991, I went looking specifically for ANC attackers, that was before the murder case. I looked for these ANC attackers
who had attacked an IFP bus and killed 18 IFP supporters in the Kwashange area. Mr Jama did not say a word about his or his colleagues activities or his colleagues weapons and in this time we picked up several ANC members since the beginning of 1990 with regard to the attack in Kwashange. Mainly to prohibit him from committing any further acts of terrorism, such as the one in the Richmond area, Mr Jama had to die. The organisation or institution to which I belonged; I was a constable in the Riot Squad in Pietermaritzburg. On the day of the murder I was in charge of the vehicle squad. The driver of the vehicle was
Mr F S Erasmus. My men were Constable Van der Hoogen. The specials were Madlala, Bengu Nglamini, Kweswa(?) and Mlambu. The course which I had completed in the police force were the Riot Squad courses, the protection of very important people and also the medical course and I obtained further training in the Riot Squad under the Riot Unit. The relationship between the act itself and the political objective was Mr Jama was an ANC member, was deep in the IFP area namely Elandskop taken there. So many members of the ANC were taken away as in my statement version to the TRC on 19 November 1996. If Mr Jama's interrogation was unsuccessful, the same as so many before him, we would just have left him there in the Inkatha area. He would definitely have died at the hands of the IFP. Because he attempted to escape and at that stage represented the whole ANC in my mind, he simply had to die. After Mr F S Erasmus mentioned that we had to kill him, the flashes of Major Terblanche's death and also other policemen, the state of mind in which I was then, the shots which were fired at me and the normal stone-throwing incidents in riot situations
overwhelmed me and influenced me to the deed which left Mr Jama behind us, a corpse. I experienced a personal feeling which had made me a border fighter. I could stop him from killing other people and burning more places as he had done in the Richmond area, which I had proof of. I did not hate Mr Jama, I regarded his deeds later as the ANC's (indistinct) and that is what he had stood for. I had no personal gain or cash remuneration by murdering Mr Jama. I had no personal feat against Mr Jama. I had no personal grudge against him and I did not know him personally except that he was an ANC supporter. Also that they had launched attacks on the ANC(?). In conclusion I would like to say I would like to grab the opportunity firstly to apologise to Mr Jama's family and parents for what I was and that I am sorry that politics turned me, as a young 21-year old man, to what I was. Secondly, the previous government made me fight against the ANC and identified them as the enemy and I would like to ask you to forgive me for what I did to your son. Thank you very much.
QUESTION:: The aspects of Mr Jama in the bush, you said that you looked back and saw that the weapon was close to him and that he was shot. According to your knowledge do you know whether he was alive at the time the shot was fired or don't you know?
QUESTION:: Then on page 12, the second paragraph you say that "on 10 February 1991 I went looking specifically for ANC attackers who had attacked an IFP bus in the Kwashange area and killed 18 supporters". We did mention to the committee that you were prosecuted previously with regard to nine cases of assault, of which you were acquitted eventually and did these assaults also take place in this period of time between 10 February 1991?
ANSWER:: Mr Chairman at that time I did not belong to any political party although I was affiliated to the rightwing, I supported the rightwing fully and I was totally opposed to the ANC and the UDF. I just want to clear that I was not racist in the sense of anti-black or anti-white, as far as I was indoctrinated in the police college and my training at the Unit, I was fighting the ANC.
ANSWER:: Yes they were card-carrying members of the IFP and IFP supporters. Just to highlight that point, at some stage I was doing office duties with special constables who were on duty with me and in their application forms I encountered that they had been referred by a Chief of the Inkatha and thereafter they were appointed. There were absolutely no ANC applications which were successful thereafter.
QUESTION:: Mr Harrington, as I explained to your counsel earlier, I propose putting my questions in English but please reply in Afrikaans. I understand it perfectly well but I feel happier to put my questions to you in English. Will that be alright?
originally to prevent any incidents of violence but the supporters were peaceful and although my group of special constables tried to incite them by dancing in a circle with shotguns and shouted slogans.
ANSWER:: It was in the ANC area, I would say, it is difficult to be accurate per kilometres, but it's approximately a five minute drive. That was after the ANC group which was at the meeting had dispersed and had gone into the houses.
ANSWER:: The aim when we proceeded to drive was to go and pick up the next shift of constables since we were about to round off our day's duties. We had to go and pick up the next shift in the Elandskop area at the mentioned place.
QUESTION:: I can understand and I don't dispute your evidence that it was your intention and those of your colleagues to arrest or take into custody, legally or otherwise, members of the ANC with a view to harassing them and trying to find information, is that correct?
ANSWER:: Mr Jama appeared very suspect in the first place because he quickly put his hand into the back of his pants and that is what caused Mr Erasmus to stop and we went to him directly, and he also resisted being searched and that caused us to arrest him.
ANSWER:: The pocketbook was found after he had been taken into custody and before Mr Erasmus slapped him the first time, it was when we left from the first stop after we had picked him up on our way to the bottle store.
ANSWER:: That is correct Mr Brink, but in the time we mentioned and the riot squad where I worked, to me it was normal procedure to detain ANC people and not charge them, and interrogate them and take their weapons without prosecuting them. Hence it was a waste of time for me to prosecute mainly because we operated on the information of the Kwashange incident and we were looking for attackers and we were looking for the firearms which had been used to assault the people in the bus.
pocketbook and having read it and having questioned Mr Jama about the content and about the attacks in the Richmond area, Mr Madlala and I, my accomplice in the matter, threw the pocketbook out of the window of the vehicle onto the tarred road.
QUESTION:: Mr Harrington, it is my duty here not to prosecute you but to endeavour to bring out the truth as best I can, to enable this Committee to arrive at a fair and just decision you understand? After you were convicted the Attorney-General, we know, took the matter on appeal insofar as sentences were concerned.
ANSWER:: Mr Brink that is the same situation in which you are today, the judge of appeal and also the Supreme Court judge were not there at the time of the incident, they were not at the scene. That is why I am grabbing this opportunity with both hands to tell the truth. If I say that the pocketbook was there, it was there.
QUESTION:: Why, having regard to the fact that murder is such a serious offence, why didn't you merely take Jama to the police station, detain him and have him charged by a more senior policeman, you had a lot of information.
ANSWER:: That is correct. On previous occasions I experienced the same thing with regard to the same kind of incidents where detained ANC supporters, with more information than Mr Jama had, and we assaulted the person and if we got the correct answers, satisfactory answers, we proceeded with the case and if we did not obtain any satisfactory answers we would take the ANC supporter and drop them in an Inkatha area which on 19 November, 1996, I explained to the TRC.
JUDGE NGOEPE:: I am sorry Mr Brink, going back to the judgment which was read back to you, your answer is that as far as you can remember you did tell the Court that the pocketbook was found on the deceased?
JUDGE NGOEPE:: I don't understand what your answer is, I wanted to know from you whether if you did mention the pocketbook to the Court whether, to the best of your recollection, you also told the judge what the contents thereof was?
JUDGE NGOEPE:: You would agree won't you Mr Harrington that if you did in fact tell the trial judge that the pocketbook was found, as also what the contents were, it is highly unlikely that the Court would have made the type of finding that Mr Brink has read to you?
ANSWER:: Sir it is probably the evidence which was considered, lots of factors were mentioned there that are changed today, but I maintain that the pocketbook was found in Mr Jama's possession and this led to what happened. Does that answer your question?
MR BANADE:: Mr Chairman if I may also just interject, coincidentally I do have a transcript of the judge and his assessors' judgment. It is not the reported version, it is not reported but on page 841 the judge says with accused 6 in this matter, and that was the applicant
"...question the deceased. The most likely reason why accused 6 would have wanted to question the deceased would have been in connection with a notebook or diary found in the deceased's possession. Accused No 6 was in authority over the special constables, he was in charge of the questioning of the deceased."
JUDGE NGOEPE:: Can I just ask you, was the, for clarification, was the evidence led by the Trial Court that the notebook was found on the corpse of the deceased or whether it had been found earlier on by the police?
the journey, being questioned about the entries in a certain notebook or diary which had been found on him."
ANSWER:: Mr Chairman I do not know if, which had been found on him means that it had been found on his, on his corpse or whether it had been found on him at the time when he was still alive. I will not be able to assist you in that regard.
MR DE JAGER:: Mr Harrington the evidence which you have presented to us tells us that you found deadly evidence against the accused that he was involved in attacks upon the Inkatha supporters or that he was involved in the incident where the 18 people were killed, is that correct?
ANSWER:: Sir you know it was in a situation where you become involved, previous Exhibits you got rid of and there were no further implications or traces that the firearm which I was looking for had been found, we would just have been left in an Inkatha area, but that was before we stopped at the bottle store where we took the decision to dispose of him, to kill him.
ANSWER:: It was at the time when we stopped, the stop which I mentioned in my document, approximately, after an approximate 15 minute drive where we stopped at the bottle store, we stood there conversing and Frans Erasmus came up with the suggestion that we should kill him.
constables and permanent policemen, not one of us said no don't do it or we shouldn't do it. The special constables were Inkatha members and we were aware of their feeling towards ANC members and we were right-wing policemen. So the general decision was unanimous.
JUDGE WILSON:: So as far as you were concerned, evidence was unimportant, the document, his own pocketbook which would convict him was of no relevance, it was something you threw out of the van, is that your evidence?
ANSWER:: That is correct Mr Wilson, the war which we were waging against the ANC, if I could just look into my record in the police, we arrested ANC people our total onslaught, as I was taught at the College and by the Unit and in the work which I did and what I saw on a daily basis made it necessary for me in this objective.
ANSWER:: My first priority was the attacks which were launched on the Inkatha people and it was also at a time where we had intensified the detentions on the ANC people with the aim of getting the firearms which were used to kill the 18 Inkatha people in the bus.
"ANC houses were searched for firearms. The firearms would then be sold to Inkatha supporters. Semi-automatic firearms for example, AK-47 rifles would be sold for R1 000 a piece and shotguns for example, pistols and revolvers would be sold for between R500 to R700."
ANSWER:: I would like to emphasise that the objective is incorrect because it was not with blatant view of selling the firearms, it was more of a service which we rendered to the Inkatha, who had less firearms than the ANC and at that time you know I even applied for a loan of R1 000 at the bank to obtain more. So if you mentioned R50 000, I cannot say that I was rich.
ANSWER:: It was, we did it in the open. After we had taken firearms from the ANC members we would go to the single quarters at the barracks and we operated freely, people would come to my room freely so it was a general operation amongst us.
ANSWER:: It is as I mentioned, I started at the Riot Squad and I was "raised" by senior members, not(?) to say officers or commanding officers of the operation itself. I merely followed the path which they showed me and I led my juniors along the same path.
"Here we were with an ANC supporter who did not want to give us any information with regards to his activities and in involvement in the Richmond area. He was severely assaulted, that cannot be disputed. I was not afraid of any charge of assault against me. The next logical point was to murder Mr Jama. My honour, as interrogator, and authority was in doubt and I could not handle it that an ANC supporter could just stare me in the face without any sound or answer. His instructors who delivered him and his party should have been very proud of their soldier and with approximately three years of hatred of the ANC exploded within me. I knew that Mr Jama had to die."
JUDGE WILSON:: Because it was your prestige which was at stake which he was attacking. Your honour as an interrogator, as an authority, it was in the context of the onslaught against the ANC? He did not want to say anything so you decided to kill him. That is what you say there.
ANSWER:: As I mentioned, firstly he appeared very suspect by putting his hand in the back of his pants and that necessitated Mr Erasmus to stop and thereafter he did not want to be arrested, albeit he did not want to be searched. That was to prevent a situation where onlookers would start gathering around and it was also a reason to take him away than to get involved in a situation with a riot incident.
ANSWER:: We found that in his pocketbook which we found in his possession and also if I remember correctly, we mentioned at some stage that he had to die like the people in the Kwashange area according to the explanation given to me by Madlala, but that was not said to me directly.
MS KHAMPEPE:: On page 9 of your statement that you have just handed up to the Committee, you indicate that you saw yourself sitting with this enemy who was a communist and that your indoctrination just took the better part of you and you saw an opportunity which you did not want to leave unused. What I want to know is whether that was the first time for you to have been able to apprehend an ANC supporter?
police, that the ANC was the enemy, they were the communists and they were the anti-Christ and after several assaults on ANC people I reached breaking point. Something inside me just cracked, it snapped, all the feelings which I had harboured against the ANC just reached breaking point which led to us executing this action.
JUDGE WILSON:: Yes and in the light of your statements, you'd make them undress if they were male and female and have intercourse before your jeering Inkatha constables wouldn't you? Do you remember putting that in your statements?
ANSWER:: That is correct. I would just like to add something, what I mean about the ANC people which we apprehended and the assaults on them, I would just like to emphasise that as far as Mr Jama is concerned I would like
to confirm that as far as his death is concerned I cannot say that whether the others were dead or alive but that they were, we would drop them in an Inkatha area which would consequently endanger their lives and we'd leave them there for dead.
JUDGE WILSON:: So you were intending that they should be killed too, other people you had questioned you would then abandon in an Inkatha area where you expected them to be killed, is that what you are telling us?
ANSWER:: I cannot speak for the Inkatha people but the feeling at the time was that they would be terrified if they were left there, be it to be assaulted or to be killed or to escape death. That was after we had obtained or whether we had not obtained any information from them.
CHAIRMAN:: Is the position that because a man is a member of a political organisation such as the ANC and if you come to hear about him being a member of the ANC, then you would be entitled to do anything you like with him, torture him, assault him, let him go and if need be, kill him?
ANSWER:: At that stage in the war we were waging against the ANC it was so intense and we proceeded as usual and that't the only way that I can express it if you understand what I mean...(end of 2a)...that is correct sir.
JUDGE NGOEPE:: In your evidence you repeatedly said that you accepted that it was practice to harass members of the ANC, but in this case did you not, by killing the deceased, did you not in fact go beyond even what you understood to be the practice, mere harassment?
JUDGE NGOEPE:: ...the killing of the deceased in terms of your evidence would not fall within the framework of your usual operation which consisted of merely harassing them, arresting them, assaulting them and letting them go?
ANSWER:: Well sir if I was an ordinary station policeman I wouldn't have done the work which I had done, I wouldn't have been taught to do that type of work I would have been taught along a completely different vein if I had worked at a police station.
ANSWER:: I would just like to rectify one point. Erasmus and I joined the police force on the same day, coincidentally it was on the same day 23 December 1987, and my force number and his differed by about four digits. We enroled at the section that day.
"My salary and the money which I earned through my weapon transactions was not enough for me to survive on."
...to mean that you were in fact using the income you derived from the weapons for more than just a braai and the liquor. The impression I get is that you in fact used the proceeds from such sales to maintain yourself or to help support your family and yourself?
making a loan of R1 000 so it was not for personal gain. I lived in single barrack quarters, I had a normal single bed which policemen had and my TV and my hi-fi and I did not live an extravagant life.
MS KHAMPEPE:: Mr Harrington you have repeatedly stated that in your opinion you saw the assault on the ANC members as part of the prevailing culture that was existing within the police force. Is that correct?
ANSWER:: The objective which I strove to achieve I did not see it as a matter of having to report to them. As I said, the general impression since the beginning from my first day that I enroled there was that that was the impression that was created up until such time as I was a senior and I just proceeded in that school of thought.
MS KHAMPEPE:: The incident involving the death of the deceased, did you also think it was inappropriate for you to report it as something that you had done within your scope of your activities as a policeman to your commanding officer?
ANSWER:: In my state of mind and the way that I saw this whole thing I saw myself as having done something that was okay, I fought the enemy and that is what I had been taught earlier at the police college that the ANC was the enemy, the communist and that we had to combat communism.
QUESTION:: Mr Harrington I should have asked you about this earlier but it was drawn to my attention after I had finished questioning you. I have in front of me a statement which is, in fairness to you, not signed but it's a statement which appears to have been made by the applicant, Mr Madlala. I want you to tell me, if you can, how big was this pocketbook, what size was it when you found it on the deceased?
"We came across a group of about 15 boys, including Mbongeni Jama, whom we searched after stopping the police van but we found nothing from their persons."
QUESTION:: Yes what I'm saying is that Mr Madlala says that you came across a group of 15 boys, including Jama, whom we searched but we found nothing from their persons, presumably he means nothing on their persons.
ANSWER:: When we searched the group, of which Mr Jama was part, we did not find anything. The pocketbook was found when he was in the vehicle and when we had left the scene. The pocketbook was not found at the time when we were searching them at the railway crossing.
ANSWER:: Yes definitely, if I am to speak on behalf of the special constables, if I myself was a special constable and involved in the Inkatha/ANC, ANC/Inkatha war, it was a sort of victory power dance which they were doing, they were not afraid. The special constables that worked with me were hardened men, they weren't afraid.
ANSWER:: I was involved in court cases, for example charges of possession of dagga and so forth and also assault, there was an assault case where I was the accused so court procedure was not a totally strange concept.
ANSWER:: No we did not work with the documents of the investigation at all, for example murder and robbery and so forth, we did not have anything to do with the dockets although we acted on information which we received from Inkatha members or special constables. For example, the information which we received with the attack on the bus where 18 Inkatha supporters were killed, we launched an investigation.
where we acted on information where somebody had fired at me and the South African Police video team which was shooting the video at the time gave us that information. We used that information to get to the people that we were after.
ANSWER:: I would not say that whether we would have killed the person or severely assaulted the person but it all depends on my indoctrination which that day reached a breaking point, otherwise I'd been applying for amnesty for 10 February and not 24 February. It just depended on how things went.
JUDGE NGOEPE:: I don't know what lies ahead but I'm just looking at what on the face of it appears to be a statement by one of the applicants, Mr Madlala. That very portion that you've been reading the rest of the contents of the same paragraph do you not think that they should be put to
the applicant Mr Harrington because there appears, on the face of it, there appears to be quite some material contradictions. I would think that you would put the rest of the contents to him so that we should get some clarity on which is likely to be the correct version.
MR BRINK:: I will, subject to my learned colleague's right to re-examine on the point I think he should be given an opportunity, but I'll do that. I was more concerned about this pocketbook which appeared to me to be non-existent going by that judgment and this statement, but I will.
QUESTION:: Mr Harrington I asked you earlier about the pocketbook and the fact that Mr Madlala also indicated that as far as he was concerned, they found nothing on anyone, any one of the 10 you remember that. He then goes on to say
"After we had finished searching, Mbongeni Jama said these police need to be killed as they had killed IFP supporters at Kwashange. After I had told Harrington of what had been uttered by Mbongeni, Harrington and Erasmus took him into the back of the police van whereafter Erasmus drove off while Harrington was seated with us at the back. After a long drive, Harrington took out
the belt of Mbongeni and started throttling him with it on intervals. Harrington suggested that Mbongeni be killed as a result Mtokoso directed the van into the big bush where Mbongweni was further throttled on his neck while lying on the ground, by Harrington who was also hitting him against the stone with his head until Mbongeni died. After Mbongeni died I was forced by Harrington to shoot him with a shotgun, which I did. The doctor also confirmed in court that Mbongeni had already died when being shot at."
QUESTION:: It appears to have been taken, as I told you earlier, it's not signed, but I understand this is a statement which Mr Madlala made, appears to have been made on 6 November last year but I don't want to mislead you as to where and when it was made because there's no indication as to that. I have been informed that this is a statement which this gentleman has made.
"After we had finished searching, Mbongeni Jama said these police need to be killed as they had killed IFP supporters at Kwashange. After I had told Harrington of what had been uttered by
JUDGE NGOEPE:: He told you that he said the police should be killed, not because he had an ANC T-shirt on him, not because he had a pocket diary etc., but because he had said that you people should be killed, that's the reason why you decided to put him into the police vehicle that's what he's saying, that is the impression we get here. Is that the reason why he was put in the vehicle? (end tape 2b)
ANSWER:: It was because initially we stopped and just to put this in perspective he put his hand in the back of his pants when we stopped, that was the reason for us stopping and he appeared very suspect. We searched the group, he did not want to be searched by us. Some of the special constables had to hold him so that we could search him. I still maintain that he was an ANC representative and if I
ANSWER:: It's possible that it could have been conveyed to me but it is something that I cannot remember. Look I also spoke a bit of broken Zulu at the time between Madlala and the other specials and myself, we spoke a mixture of broken English and broken Zulu so there were times we understood what they said when they spoke either, speaking either broken English or broken Zulu but I would not like to be specific in saying that the person either said that or did not.
JUDGE NGOEPE:: ...seem to remember precisely why you took him onto the vehicle and why him in particular. Anyway, the next sentence reads that you are the person who suggested that the deceased be killed. What is your comment?
ANSWER:: It is not, we did not decide there to kill him, the decision was taken at the bottlestore after Erasmus came up with the suggestion. No decision was taken immediately after he was put into the police van.
ANSWER:: Sir if I may put it this way, the inquest showed that the bullet penetrated his head in the front and exited at the back and there was no mention made of any such, and there was nothing said about me knocking his head against a stone.
ANSWER:: That was the evidence in court as well but when we spoke about it and we took the decision that Mr Jama had to be killed, special constable Bengu offered to show us the place where we could do this and Madlala said that he would shoot him. When we got to the bushes Nglameni came with his firearm and said to Madlala to shoot him. It was a unanimous decision and the feeling was mutual between all of us, we all knew what it was about.
ANSWER:: If I were to say to a strange person shoot him, then it could be probably regarded as an instruction but the fact that we took the decision as a group and he said okay I'll shoot him, I did not give any specific instruction.
ANSWER:: Thank you sir. The offence for which I am applying for amnesty is the murder on Mr Jama on 24-2-1991. My personal background; I was born on 25 March 1969 in Klerksdorp. I grew up there and I matriculated there.
My political affiliation at school was apolitically affiliated to the right. As a working young man I was affiliated to the right and anti-ANC. At the time of the offence I was affiliated to the right and trained to be anti-ANC. I am currently a non-active member of the AWB. My addresses; I am currently at Grootvlei maximum security prison in Bloemfontein and my home address is No 64 Ivan Walker Street, Dorkensville in Klerksdorp. Both my parents are deceased. My father was a miner at Hartebeesfontein Gold Mine and my mother was a housewife.
My career; Immediately after matric I joined the police force in 1987 on 23-12. Thereafter I went to Pretoria College for training. After my training I was deployed to Berghol(?) police station and thereafter to the Riot Squad, No 8 in Pietermaritzburg. If I should be released I would like to go back home and work.
Factors which influenced me; I grew up believing that the ANC was the enemy and that they were terrorists. At the time of my police training I was taught that the ANC was our enemy, that they were terrorists and that everything should be done to stop them. When I joined the Riot Squad our
Commanding Officer was Major Terblanche. He informed me that the ANC, we had to fight the ANC with all our might, that they were our enemies and that if we should be prosecuted or get into trouble in any way, he would be there for us. There were weekly meetings and discussions between Inkatha leaders and high-ranking officers of the unrest squad. That is when I realised that the police and the Inkatha were working together. Early in my career at the unrest unit, my colleagues and I were shot at and our vehicles were stoned. There I could clearly see that we were the ANC's enemy and that they wanted to shoot and kill us. On 15 March 1990, Major Terblanche was murdered by an ANC member. He was also an officer in the Unit. This led to my indoctrination against the ANC being incensed even more, not just me but everyone in our Unit had lost someone who was very dear to us. All the special constables were proclaimed members of the ANC, there were no ANC members in the special constables. A good policeman was one who worked long hours and was anti-ANC. It was normal procedure to search people and houses and detain people for questioning. Assaults occurred regularly and it was common practice to take firearms from the ANC and give them to the Inkatha or to sell it to them was also a common occurrence.
Happenings of 24 February 1991; on this day I was the driver of the vehicle and we received the instruction to go and monitor an ANC gathering of approximately 2 000 ANC supporters. With the arrival of the ANC supporters, the special constables danced in a little group with their shotguns and shouted Inkatha slogans. The ANC representative came to Constable Harrington and asked him to please control the constables because they were inciting the
people. Harrington did so. At approximately 16:00 the meeting dispersed and we escorted them out of the Inkatha area. After approximately five minutes' drive, we passed a group of plus/minus 10 black men at the railway crossing who were dressed in ANC T-shirts. As we were passing one suddenly stuck his hand into the back of his pants and my first instinct was that he was going to pull out a firearm. I stopped the vehicle. We decided to search them. The deceased, Jama, did not want me to search him and I slapped him. Some of the special constables held him so that he could be searched. Constable Harrington decided that Mr Jama should be loaded into the back of the vehicle for further information. I got back into the front of the vehicle and continued driving. I drove for a short distance and then I heard him screaming. I stopped, got out of the vehicle and slapped Jama and said that he should not make noise. I then continued driving to the Elandskop area where we were to pick up the next shift of special constables. I stopped at the pick-up point and this is where Constable Harrington informed me about the pocketbook, the content, and that they had thrown it out of the vehicle. Jama then attempted to grab Nglameni's shotgun. He failed and then jumped out of the back. He ran around the vehicle, straight into me. I put him back into the back of the vehicle. Bengu and Madlala then went, took the vehicle and went to Bengu's father's shop to get cold drinks. When they came back we were all standing there and talking and I mentioned that Jama should be killed. We took a decision as a group of eight policemen that Jama should be killed. Madlala said that he would shoot him and Bengu said that he knew of a place where we could shoot Jama. He then got
into the front with Van der Hoogen and I to show us the place. The others got into the back. We drove for a distance and then stopped in a bush, deep in the IFP area. I got out and saw Jama running away. I drew my 9mm pistol and directed it at him. Harrington said that I should not do that for fear of ballistic tests. Harrington and Madlala chased him, the rest of us followed. Madlala took the shotgun from Nglameni, the rest of us strolled back to the vehicle and we heard the shot go off. Back at the vehicle everyone got in. I started the vehicle and slowly drove back so that Harrington could erase any tracks. Back at the tarred road we dropped of the special constables and we all agreed that no one was to say anything about the murder. We then went back to our Unit and went off duty.
My feeling and state of mind at the time when we detained Jama, the decision at the bottle store to kill him and finally when he was shot at in the bush; when we detained him it was normal procedure to detain ANC people, assault them, interrogate them and acquire more firearms to give to the Inkatha. At the bottle store here we were with an ANC member, our enemy, a communist, with plus/minus two years indoctrination against the ANC. Something inside me exploded. The death of my Commanding Officer, Major Terblanche also unwound me. The death of IFP members and other policemen were killed by ANC members. I had to fight the ANC who was the enemy, this was the cause of our decision to kill Mr Jama. My indoctrination against the enemy was what controlled my state of mind and it was not my motive. After he had been shot I felt relieved. I had made my contribution towards fighting the ANC which was our enemy and trying to stop it in its objectives. I was not
worried about being prosecuted for murder or assault. I did what I had to do and what was indirectly expected of me. In conclusion; I wanted him to die at the hands, the context in which it was committed, I wanted him to die at the hands of a group of policemen because he represented the whole ANC and attacks which were launched on us and other policemen and also Major Terblanche who had died at their hands, and Inkatha members who now worked with us.
The objective of the act; I had proof that he was an ANC member through the ANC T-shirt which he had on. The information which I received about acts of terrorism which he had committed against IFP members. He was my political opponent and my enemy and at that moment represented the whole ANC, and to stop him from participating from any more acts of terrorism, Mr Jama had to die.
The organisation or institution to which I belonged; I was a Constable in the unrest squad at Pietermaritzburg on the day of the murder and I was driving a vehicle. Mr Harrington was in charge of the vehicle and the men working with him were Constable Van der Hoogen, special constables Madlala, Bengu, Nglameni, Kosu(?), Mlambo(?) who had also done courses in riot squad control.
The relationship between the deed and the political objective; Mr Jama, an ANC member, our enemy, was firstly very deep in the IFP area, which was Elandskop. If his interrogation was unsuccessful, like so many before him, we would have left him there in the Inkatha area. If we were to have left him in the IFP area he would definitely have died at the hands of IFP supporters. Because he attempted
to escape, and at that stage represented the whole of the ANC, he had to die. The deaths of Major Terblanche and also other policemen, IFP members and attacks on myself and other policemen necessitated me to commit the offence. By killing Mr Jama, to a certain extent, I was putting a stop to communism and I could stop Mr Jama from killing or attacking any more people in any other places. I did not hate Mr Jama. I later regarded his deeds as part of his work in the ANC which he represented. I received no personal gain by means of cash remuneration from killing Mr Jama. I had no personal grudge against Mr Jama. I did not know him personally except that he was an ANC supporter and also that he had launched attacks on the IFP, which that I found out on that day. In conclusion I would like to make use of the opportunity to extend my apologies to Mr Jama and his family. I would like to apologise for the role which I played, the death of your son at our hands, and I would like to ask you to forgive me for what I have done to you and your family. I am very sorry. I would like to make use of this opportunity to say to the ANC supporters that I am sorry for the role which I played in the apartheid era against you, I would like you to forgive me as well. Thank you very much.
QUESTION:: As I understand your evidence, when you were at the bottle store you found yourself sitting, as you say, with an enemy, a communist and suddenly the indoctrination which you had endured caused you to have some sort of inner explosion.
QUESTION:: ...bottle store, you were sitting there and you had this inner explosion, you remembered that Major Terblanche had been murdered and you became very angry so then you thought this man, the deceased, must go. Is that basically it?
"Constable Harrington informed me about the pocketbook, the contents thereof and that they had thrown that book out of the window."
QUESTION:: Why didn't you then, even if you were going to kill the deceased, why didn't you ensure the pocketbook be recovered so if any questions were asked you'd say well this is what we found on this man, he's a terrorist.
ANSWER:: At that time I did not think of anything like that. The information which Harrington gave to me I believed because he was the senior member and to tell the truth I did not think about going back to find the pocketbook or starting to look for it where they said they threw it away.
QUESTION:: If you had found say a toy gun on the deceased, would you have agreed that that should be thrown away or a defective firearm, would you agree that that should be just left in the bushes or on the road?
QUESTION:: ...endeavouring to make is this. Here you have a pocketbook containing apparently a confession made by the deceased of terrorist activities, that's according to the evidence. You then plan to kill the man, which you do. You must have realised there might have been an investigation into this once the body had been found. You must have realised that you would have been investigated.
Wouldn't it have helped your case in that police sub-culture to say to your superiors yes we killed him, this is what we found on him, this book containing a history of terror attacks and murders or whatever? (end side A)
ANSWER:: I wanted to search him at the beginning but he refused to let me and I then slapped him. Some of the special constables then held him and the others searched him. I did not participate any further in searching him.
ANSWER:: When I stopped at the bottle store and was informed about the pocketbook, it was strange to me that when they searched him where we encountered him, that they did not find it but I did not ask where the pocketbook was found or anything like that because nothing was found on him when he was taken away from there.
ANSWER:: We used all these languages, I myself was not a Zulu or English-speaking person, I grew up as an Afrikaans-speaking person and as far as I can remember we used English and Afrikaans and probably a bit of Zulu here and there but not too much. He merely informed me that they were going to take Mr Jama away and that I should start the vehicle and that we should leave.
QUESTION:: You see Mr Madlala seems to indicate that after he had told, that's he Mr Madlala, had told Mr Harrington about what Jama said relating to the killing of police, you and Harrington then took the deceased into the back of the
ANSWER: At the vehicle I did not see him. While I was driving I did not see him, but that is the information which I received and even in the bushes I did not see him strangle him. I walked closer and I did not actually see him strangle him. At the vehicle, I saw him drag him out of the vehicle when we stopped at the bushes, but I did not actually see him strangle him.
MEMBER OF THE COMMITTEE: Mr Erasmus, the in initial question was, did you see him throttle the deceased with the belt and you said when, at which stage? And then I said to you well, at any stage, then you said no, you didn't see him do that. Why didn't you simply say no, I never saw him throttle the deceased? Why did you have to ask at which stage if you never at any stage saw him throttle the deceased with the belt?
properly, because when I saw him with belt around his neck was when the vehicle was stopped and Mr Harrington pulled him out of the vehicle with the belt around his neck. I did not see Mr Harrington strangle him with a belt at any other stage.
QUESTION: ... pull him out of the vehicle with the belt around his neck, do you mean that Harrington had the belt in his hand, was pulling him out of the vehicle by using the belt? Pulling him out that way. Or was the belt just loose?
ANSWER: As far as I know I can really not say because I was not really at the scene when the incident took place. I turned back and I walked away. We knew what was going to happen. It was preplanned and we discussed at the bottle store that Mr Madlala was going to shoot him. So I knew what was going to happen.
ANSWER: Well, Sir, I cannot say much about the torture because I did not really see that. I was driving the vehicle. And because we took the decision at the bottle store that he should be eliminated. I just didn't care much more because we knew what we were going to do from there and how we were going to kill him.
QUESTION: ... torture with the use of the belt because you were driving, but it must have been obvious to you when a man is taken out of a vehicle with a belt around his neck something very unpleasant has happened.
ANSWER: The one moment he was being dragged out and the next moment he was running and that was where I drew the 9mm pistol and Mr Harrington advised me not to do that for fear of ballistics identifying me as the one that shot.
ANSWER: At that point we took the decision that we were not going to have him formally charged and the decision was already taken that he was going to be killed and it was our job, assaults by different members of the unit, and that is where I learnt it as well.
MR JASSAT: Mr Chairman, my name is Farouk Jassat. I am an attorney practising in Pietermaritzburg. I was requested yesterday to represent Mrs Jama, but my difficulty has been that Mrs Jama has no documentation available which has been furnished by people leading the evidence here in order that I could make some meaningful contribution to this Commission. I don't know what the practice of this Commission is, but I was under the impression that if Mrs Jama is an interested party she should have been given documentation.
MR JASSAT: Mr Chairman, I have been brought in at the last minute. I haven't even had a chance to speak to Mrs Jama, the reason being that when I arrived at two o'clock you were about to commence. In the circumstances, the question of putting questions to this applicant, could that not be left over until tomorrow morning, if that doesn't inconvenience this Commission?
CHAIRMAN: I think you've seen by now that there has been fairly comprehensive questioning by members of the Committee as well as far as the events themselves are concerned. The Committee would like to hear what Mrs Jama's attitude would be or is. Obviously she was not present at the scene and
only heard about it much later, so would not be able to controvert such evidence as has been given. We may be wrong. But that's a matter which you may find out. If you would like to consider putting questions to these witnesses tomorrow morning then I would afford you that opportunity to do so.
CHAIRMAN: The documents that are made available to us are the applications for amnesty. Members of the Committee have copies of the judgment of the trial court and the appeal court, but those are public documents.
CHAIRMAN: I am not talking about whether you knew his feelings, but you heard that he also reached breaking point and you reached breaking point, and my question is that is an amazing coincidence that it should happen at the same time.
CHAIRMAN: Why did you decide to withhold informing your superiors about it? If it was such a correct thing to do why did you not tell your superiors well, we have carried out our jobs as good policemen, this is what we did. Why didn't you do it?
ANSWER: At that point we decided that no one was to say anything. Because Mr Harrington was a senior I decided that this was something that was going to remain with us and it was part of our duties at the Riot Squad, not just assaults and so forth, but it was part of what I had been taught and at that stage I did not see why we should report it because the senior member in our group said that no one was to say anything about it and I accepted it as such.
ANSWER: You know, the assaults which usually took place there, as I said, where I said the man should be killed, I decided that we shouldn't talk about it mainly because I had come up with the suggestion too.
CHAIRMAN: ... My question is, if you did do something that was right and a man was killed why didn't you report? And you say you didn't think about it. And my question was, you did, because you took a decision not to report it.
MEMBER OF THE COMMITTEE: ... page 5 "in die bos" and you look at Constable Harrington's page 10 "in die bos". You both say you felt "verlig" afterwards and you both end up saying "I was not at all worried about being prosecuted for
MEMBER OF THE COMMITTEE: ... you lied to the court about it, didn't you? And you said in your statement "Ons het die inligting van die hof weerhou" - "We withheld the information in court since we thought we would be acquitted of murder and back at the Unit we would explain how we could allow specials to drive in the State vehicle".
ANSWER: The firearms were all removed from the vehicle and we knew that the special constables would bring him back to us. We worked so closely together that at that stage I trusted them to bring him back.
MEMBER OF THE COMMITTEE: ... why not send two with him to guard him? Why leave him alone in the back of a vehicle, a man who had shown he wanted to escape? Is there any other explanation that you are withholding from us, constable?
MEMBER OF THE COMMITTEE: Your behaviour seems to me to be incomprehensible. And the fact that both you and Mr Harrington for some reason wanted to keep it from the court because you thought you'd be in such trouble with the Force for letting these policemen drive a vehicle.
MEMBER OF THE COMMITTEE: Mr Erasmus, I am putting the questions I am about to put to you because I am under the impression that both from the evidence of Mr Harrington and yourself, the impression I get from both your evidence is that despite the fact that the deceased and his group were searched, the pocketbook was initially not found but rather subsequently. Do I understand your evidence correctly in that way?
MEMBER OF THE COMMITTEE: ... page 3 of your statement, you will see that what you are saying is that - in the middle of the page - "When we were passing ...". (CHANGE OVER TO TAPE 4) ... They did not want me to search him. I slapped him and some of the special constables held him so that he could be searched.
MEMBER OF THE COMMITTEE: You had this intense interest in having him searched to find out what he was having, and despite the fact that the special constables held him for the purpose of being so searched, the pocketbook was not found at that stage, is that what you are saying?
ANSWER: Yes, that is so. When they searched him and found nothing, the impression was that we were going to take him for questioning and when we stopped at the bottle store I was informed by Mr Harrington that he had a pocketbook and it seems strange to me that the pocketbook was not found at the first scene where we encountered him.
the fact that he attracted attention to himself that he was hiding something, despite the fact that he was held up so that he could be thoroughly searched how, if he did in fact have a pocketbook at that stage, how it could have been missed.
ANSWER: As I said, after I slapped him, I attempted to search him and he resisted and I slapped him and then I withdrew from the whole situation and I stood and watched while the other members searched him. Who searched him I cannot say with certainty today. As you say, it was very strange to me that nothing was found in his possession at that stage.
ANSWER: I cannot say. The information which I received was that the pocketbook was found afterwards. I did not see the pocketbook. I cannot answer you with regards to that question as to when the pocketbook was found. It was very strange, because with the initial search the pocketbook was not found.
MEMBER OF THE COMMITTEE: I took you sentence by sentence in the statement of your colleague, Mr Madlala, do you remember that? Paragraph 25, which Mr Brink read to you, and subsequently I took you sentence by sentence. You will remember that?
ANSWER: No. The fact that he was wearing the ANC T-shirt, and this group was residing in that area, told me that he was an ANC member. And the information which I got from Mr Harrington about what was in the pocketbook is all that I based my information on. They informed me about the pocketbook and that they attacked an Inkatha house and that he was an ANC member.
ANSWER: No, he merely informed me and all that he said to me was about the content which he had read in that book which had been written by Mr Jama and that he had committed acts of terrorism. I did not see the pocketbook at any stage.
ANSWER: If I remember correctly after Major Terblanche's death it was Danie Meyer and then Colonel Bok Fourie came. It could have been Mr Danie Meyer, it could have been Colonel Bok Fourie, I speak under correction. If I were to think back I would say that it probably was Colonel Fourie.
ANSWER: They said that we were to combat the enemy with all our might and we were told that were we to get into trouble, Major Terblanche said that if we were to get into trouble at any stage he would be there for us, he would protect us.
ANSWER: To be quite honest, since I was arrested the Commanding Officer who we had at the time did not even come and see us and the guys whom I worked with, the subordinates came to see me, but the Commanding Officers distanced themselves.
ANSWER: We were never informed about it. The people around us said that we should continue as usual, and as I say, in 1990 the ANC was unbanned but we continued as usual. No one said to us that we should stop all these assaults and those practices. We just proceeded as usual.
ANSWER: There are certain points which we discussed. I would not say the entire submission. We did not always work on the same shift. We worked different shifts sometimes. If I remember correctly, late 1990 or early 1991 when we joined the relief squad, there were things in which he was involved in which I was not involved with. So there are certain aspects where I was not involved and where he was involved.