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Type AMNESTY HEARING
Starting Date 28 July 1997
Names MR ROBERT V O ZUMA
Case Number 0433/96
MR DE KLERK: Is it correct that you were brought up in the traditional Zulu way - that means that you believed in a traditional Zulu values and that you further believed in the culture in a sense of your forefathers and muti and so forth?
MR ZUMA: It was on the 23rd of June 1991 - ANC members attacked our place. As a person who was standing about the place, I could soon have a feeling and I had my whistle which we had to blow when we got attacked.
MR ZUMA: As I was staying on the high area I could see them coming, they were shouting. I knew most of them because I grew up with them and we used to pass their place. They were shouting at me saying Vusi we were coming there therefore I had to blow the whistle because I knew they were coming in and they were armed and there were many. I told the other young boys to blow the whistles and we blew the whistles.
I started running downhill because I was afraid I was going to be injured. They came downhill and they started shooting towards our direction. We started running downwards and we happened to assemble and we became many in numbers. They shot one person Behkani Mkune if I remember well, yes it was Behkani Mkune. After shooting at us they started running because thatís how they used to do, they used to attack and run away.
After their retreat we sat down and tried to discuss as to what weíre going to do. We couldnít come at the same time so this is what we have to do, however one of our colleagues came out and said we should go and pay revenge.
After some time, at about half past five - as the area is a very strange area we have to go via the river and pass through passages and we knew it would take time - we sit down and discussed this is how weíre going to do it. One of a ...(intervention)
MR ZUMA: Bangi instructed us that or suggested that we should fight back and we all agreed with him. We used to be armed in most cases. We waited for some time and at about 5, because it looked as if it was going to rain and it was winter, we decided to cross and go towards their direction Tabudeni.
When we arrived at Tabudeni at the grounds we sat there because we knew that most people who were staying in that particular place - because most of the people who were staying next to area on the downhill have already vacated the place and they were running away. We were about seventeen. While we were still hiding somewhere there, one boy from the Dlamini family came out of the house - we could see because there was some moonlight and we could see that there was someone standing there and we started running towards that Dlamini place and we surrounded the house. The boy ran away after one shot was fired.
I was thinking that the house was used as a camp because I heard some gunshots and people with me were shooting, myself I was holding a spear and some bolts. I didnít manage to get into the house. We were all competing to get in an attack. When others got in I heard some women shouting from within the house and I got so afraid when I discovered that there were women inside the house. I never intended to attack women.
After these people were injured we continued with our journey. We continued - I thought we attacked women and men or men only but when arrived in court I found that we also attacked women. We went to another family which I couldnít identify - we found three young boys in the house. We attacked and stabbed them in the house, we stabbed them.
I went outside and saw it through the window because some didnít die instantly - we wanted to kill them because we knew that these were the people who were attacking us. Others might have ran away after hearing some gun sounds below. After killing these three we passed to another family and we find women, there was a woman and her children. I told the other comrades that they shouldnít kill the women because theyíve already killed some and I was warning them that they shouldnít kill them and therefore we have to leave the women in that particular house so we divided and the others had to go via another bush and we took the other way.
We happened to meet the women who were running away. After seeing us they started running. I was in front and I heard the women crying. It looks as if they were attacked. I had to run back and go back and tell them that they mustnít attack them because it looked as though those were the people who passed and decided not to attack. Thatís where one child was attacked.
I told them that they shouldnít kill the women and the children because the people who we were targeting were ANC young men, whom we intended to go and attack. Weíre not killing women, weíre killing young men. I intended to kill these ANC young men, members because those were the people who were attacking us.
We took the young child to another family. I donít know to whom the family belonged but we left the child there and we continued to a place called Ndaleni. We arrived at ...(inaudible) Sadam. We were going by to check whether there were some other IFP members. Sadam told me that we should go up to Kwambongaís place as maybe the people might be meeting there.
They said Kwambonga, I didnít know the place so we continued, we went to some ...(inaudible) and we surrounded the house. When we listened through the windows, we could hear some people inside who were laughing. I suspected that they were happy because they think they have attacked us and killed us. We started to - we hit the door - there was a ..(indistinct) in the door and we used it to hack the door. The door opened and we shot at the people and we also stabbed them with the spears and the bolts - one of them died instantly next to the rondawel. That was the person who had these multiple stab wounds because he was stabbed by most of the people.
Some of the people died right inside the house, some managed to jump out through the windows and run away. After that we thought we killed all of them. After some time we left them and continued to Mtusiís place because we ran out of ammunition. Mtusi was one of our IFP member at Ndalene and we went to him to ask for ammunition. He gave us eight.
MR DE KLERK: I thought of one thing Mr Chairman, the witness is busy with the story and it is a quite intricate following of what happened there and I would wish it to be possible that he could just finish with his ...(inaudible)
MR ZUMA: We went to Mtusiís place, we got some ammunition and we went below to a place called Selasa. When we arrived at Selasa there was one family with the light one - I didnít know to whom the family belonged, we entered the family in groups.
MR ZUMA: As we were using the homemade guns and big guns, we got ammunition for 9mm and R1 ammunitions and R4 rifles ammunition. We had different types of homemade guns. One of the guns that we had was an AK47.
MR ZUMA: We went towards Lastla - I knew a bit of the place, thatís where we shot one old man. I was just watching at the time, I didnít wish to be involved in attacking those people at that time, I donít know why it happened. However, they shot that person and we, after that we left the place. On our way we met two people and Gumbi shot them. He shot at them because he thought they were coming to find out as to whatís happening hearing the gunshots. I donít know whether he killed them or not.
We continued to a place called Matafeni. When we arrived at Matafeni we entered at the first homestead, it was a new homestead. We asked the mother in the house and she told us that sheís coming from a particular place and we discovered that it was only the woman and there was nobody in the house, so we left to pass that family an we continued.
I was insisting to them that they shouldnít kill women on our way because I intended that we should fight the ANCís young comrades. However, most of the people with us they said, we have to kill all of them because we also lost our mothers in the war so whoever we find on the way, even the children, we have to kill them.
I realised that there was nothing that I was going to do because if I continued to disagree with them, they were turn against me and kill me so I kept quiet and kept on watching all the incidents, whatever, all the things they were doing. Thatís all I have to say.
MR DE KLERK: Mr Zuma, is there anything that you want to say to the victims and the families of the victims of that attack? Maybe Iíll repeat it, is there anything that you want to say to the victims and the families of the victims of the attack?
MR ZUMA: I would like to ask for forgiveness to those who lost their family relatives, especially to those whose children had been injured, those whoís female relatives who were injured and also those whoís male relatives were injured and I would like to ask them to forgive me, thatís all.
MR RATHMAN: Weíve heard in Mr Gumbiís evidence that the attack on your area was mounted at about 3 oíclock or half past 3 and the whistles blew and you had a meeting and then you yourselves went on the attack somewhat later, 5.30/6 oíclock. Do you know, do you personally know if any attempt was made to contact IFP leaders at all?
MR ZUMA: We didnít contact anybody. The chief stayed at a far place and the headman was also a bit far so we couldnít contact them, we just took a decision after we were attacked that we have to attack back because we couldnít sleep as they were attacking us.
MR ZUMA: They way Iím explaining Iíll say, if you have to leave Koweni to Pateni you have to walk a long distance however, myself Iím a bit far away from Koweni itself so it would take a long time for me to leave Koweni to Pateni because people weíre going - weíre going to come back and attack the people if we have to first go to Pateni so we have to stay at home and protect families and the properties therefore I would say itís far away to go to Pateni.
MR ZUMA: It wasnít easy because we didnít have much time to contact ANC leaders to talk to them because the fighting was continuous since from January. We fought until June where we had to be arrested. We didnít get a chance to sit down and contact maybe Babin and Vezi to sit down and talk about this violence.
CHAIRPERSON: Rather than contact your chief for help, donít you think you should have sent a warning to your chiefs that you were going to attack the ANC that night and they better be ready to protect themselves against retaliation?
MR ZUMA: I will put it clearly. Chief Majosi was at Ndaleni and they also used to shoot or attack him, he didnít do anything. ANC members were shooting at him. I knew that he was not of the view that we should fight back, thatís why Iím saying that he wasnít going to allow us to go back and attack these people.
CROSS-EXAMINATION MR MPSHE: Thank you Mr Chairman. Mr Zuma, in your application and letter attached to the application - Iíll refer member of the Committee to page 34, point 2 of the bundle - the translation of your letter. Iím going to read from paragraph 3 thereof, which reads
Honourable members, I want to make it clear that nobody ordered me to attack the deceased but I was revenging the death of my brother.
MR ZUMA: Yes, I heard that my brother was injured but I donít think, I donít think I would have said that because the brother who got injured was injured after I was arrested. I donít know because I didnít write the letter, it was written by Mrs Knobe. My brother died after I was arrested, I donít know that, I deny that.
The Honourable, I want to put it clear is that nobody sent me ... (in Zulu that means your brother was seriously injured - itís an expression in Zulu). I say that ...(inaudible) It wasnít because someone died. What you are trying to say here is that your brother was seriously sick, terminally ill.
MR ZUMA: Iíll say thatís itís a problem because since we are in prison we normally, I normally sometimes loose my mind so while I was writing maybe I didnít understand what I was writing. As a prisoner something may have affected my mind, thatís why at the moment Iím disagreeing with that. When I gave the amnesty application forms, I knew that Iíd be given a chance to speak. My younger brother died after I was arrested therefore I will say that that may be the reason why I canít comprehend the situation very well.
MR ZUMA: Nothing happened to our home, our homestead was burnt and we couldnít stay there and thatís all that happened when we were attacked. Our family was at the outskirts and that was the first family on the border.
MR MPSHE: Mr Zuma to avoid further confusion, my question is so simple, at the time when you joined the force and attacked, had anything happened to your brother, the one youíre referring to in the letter?
MR ZUMA: As Iíve explained before, I was confused while writing the letter. I did intend to say that he died because of the violence which continued in my place. Iím trying to correct that because while weíre in prison we normally donít see things very well or clear.
MR ZUMA: Many family members and neighbours were killed. One of the girl mother died and some other family members were injured and they were attacking the Inkatha families therefore as an Inkatha we had to pay revenge because when those others were attacked and injured, I thought I could be injured at any time.
MR ZUMA: I wonít agree with that because it was ...(inaudible) which organisations which we were fighting although I wonít say I was, we were sent by IFP, I would say it was IFP and ANC people who were fighting.
MRS KHAMPEPE: Mr Zuma - Iím sorry Mr Mpshe- Iím a little perturbed by the evidence. I keep on listening from Mr Gumbi and now from yourself that you - the IFP leadership did not know anything about the attacks which were happening in Richmond. Weíve already heard evidence from Mr Gumbi and you have now also testified thereto that there were repeated incidents of attack in Richmond.
MRS KHAMPEPE: I mean the fighting between the ANC and the IFP was the order of the day. You must I presume have held several meetings as IFP members together with your leadership to discuss about this very serious issue of the attacks which were going on between the two political parties. Now are you saying that there wasnít even a suggestion from the leadership about what you as followers were to do in the event of an attack by ANC supporters, is that what you want us to believe? Truly Mr Zuma, we merely want to understand the causes of the fighting that were going on in Richmond and in this case we are trying to understand what prompted you to do what you did, we are interested in knowing the truth.
MR ZUMA: I would say that none of the IFP leaders sent us to go and attack the ANC members, we attacked them because they didnít want Inkatha at Richmond, thatís what Iíll put clearly before the Committee. We attacked them because they didnít want us, they wanted ANC to be the only ruling party in that area. I wasnít sent by any chief or any senior member at Richmond, we just went there to attack the ANC people who attacked us.
I could see them - that is the attackers - I could see them come, I knew most of them - the them is the attackers.
MR MPSHE: Mr Zuma, please understand my question. You saw these people - you knew most of them, now those that you attacked, are they amongst those that you saw attack you? I donít want to know whether they were ANC, I just want to know whether those that you knew and you saw attack you, where those included as your victims?
MR ZUMA: Those whom we attacked as we also attacked women, I would say the women were not involved but the men were the people that attacked us. I would say I personally think those were the people who attacked us. I didnít see them because it was in the evening, I was seeing them from a distance. When they started shooting I ran away.
MR ZUMA: I donít know the people that attacked us on that particular day but I said that I knew most of those people but I didnít see them on that specific day of the attack. I knew the people who used to attack us.
MR ZUMA: I saw them coming from the other attacks but I donít ...(inaudible) specific incidents of the last attack, I didnít recognise them because when they started shooting I ran away. However I used to see them before, coming to attack. I could see them that it was so and so coming.
MR ZUMA: I would say itís a mistake or confusion because that happened a long time ago, I donít remember well and I canít get the full picture because this happened in 1991 and I just remember some bits and pieces of what happened.
MRS KHAMPEPE: Mr Zuma Iím a little confused, maybe you can throw some light on my confusion. You see when you started in your evidence you stated that you knew most of the people who had launched an attack in your stronghold because you grew up together. This is what I have in my notes but further than that, in your application you stated the name of Dumisani Ntolo as the person that you knew ...(intervention)
MRS KHAMPEPE: You now want to amend your statement because I donít know how we actually have what you earlier on stated when you were led by your attorney in chief. You said I knew most of the attackers because we grew up together in the same area, they were armed and many.
CHAIRPERSON: I think we should add a little on my note. Before what you said which was just put to you, you were asked specifically about the 23rd of June and thatís when you said - on the 23rd of June when you were attacked so weíre not talking about the past or other things. You were specifically asked by your own lawyer when you said on the 23rd of June when we were attacked, I knew most of them.
MR ZUMA: Mistakes do happen. As a convicted prisoner and I stayed a long time in jail, sometimes I get confused and Iím not able to give concise answers. What I knew is that coming before the Committee, I was going to give the full account of what I know and did. I didnít know that I would be asked so many questions and I would have to answer them.
I get confused as you throw so many questions at me because Iím used to being asked so many questions at this time. As a prisoner, I will say that I should put it clear that it wasnít my intention to start a fight or attack the ANC people, they are the people who attacked us. And now if you continue asking me these questions I got confused when answering the questions.
CHAIRPERSON: Mr Zuma, the question you got confused about was the fourth question asked by your own attorney, it was not a lot of questions, it was your own attorney leading your evidence and right at the beginning of your evidence you said that you were attacked, you knew most of them, they said - called out -Vusi we are coming and that you them ran down the hill. Weíre asking about that, not what you said after lotís of questioning but what you told your - your own attorney led you on this.
MR ZUMA: Yes, I said it like that however now I find myself in a confused state. I knew the people we were fighting against. Ntolo was from Ndaleni, thatís why Iím saying now that I saw him at the Supreme Court, that he was there when we attacked them.
MRS KHAMPEPE: And in your evidence you actually painted quite a beautiful picture by saying you were in a strategic place, you were higher up and you could see what was going on from down there, you could vividly see the people who were coming up to attack you.
MRS KHAMPEPE: Well Mr Zuma, I would say if youíre having some problems you must have a glass of water, you must relax because whatever you are saying we are taking down. It is an important part of your application, it is the application and it is an important requirement of your application for amnesty not to ...(inaudible) your evidence but to tell us exactly what happened.
And no one is putting any pressure on you, no one is asking any questions, this is the evidence you gave as Judge Wilson has stated. This is the evidence you gave when you were being led by your own attorney. If youíre not going to be comfortable with the leading of questions by your own attorney, I donít know how you can be made more comfortable than that. I would say please try and relax and think about what you want us to take as your evidence.
MR MPSHE: No, but it comes from - it is your evidence, you said you saw three young boys and these three young boys were killed. The word boys comes from you and you also gave evidence that your target was actually young men so it means if you could differentiate between boys and men you saw these people.
MR ZUMA: When I referred to a young child, Iím referring to anyone who is below ten years of age. Above that I would say itís a grown up youth and since it was at night it was also difficult to distinguish between an adult and a child.
MR ZUMA: I didnít say we kill young children, we found three of them in a rondawel, there were three. We didnít, I didnít try to find out whether they were grown up or still young, we stabbed them and I went out and peeped through the window while the others were still stabbing.
ADV POTGIETER: Mr Zuma, in the light of your more recent version that you did not identify any of the attackers, can you explain to us why you decided to attack these particular people that victim to you and your group on the 23rd of June 1991.
MR ZUMA: It was because they shot at us, at our homes and they terrorized us. They terrorized us and victimized us and I would say this is the reason why I got involved in attacking them as a way paying revenge because they shot ...(inaudible). Thatís the reason why I joined in the attack.
ADV POTGIETER: In other words what youíre saying is that your attack, this revenge attack that you had launched had nothing to do with the incident that happened in your area earlier on that particular day of the 23rd of June?
MR ZUMA: I would say I was now angry with that situation because so many other people were killed and we couldnít sleep well at night. They used to attack us in the evening, in the morning, at anytime so I decided that I should go and attack them because there was nothing that I was going to do as there was a fight, they were fighting war.
MR ZUMA: Yes, I state it that way. And after the attack which involved the one person who got injured, we were tired of the attack so we decided to go and attack them because there was nothing else that we could have done, we couldnít run away as there was nowhere to go and hide.
MR ZUMA: No, they didnít fight back. We just attacked them, we just attacked those families with some lights on because we thought the people were camping there because we were of the view that they thought we ran away so that was the perfect time to go back and attack them. ...(inaudible) mentioned by this name said we should make sure that there are no women inside. I was also of the view that we should go and attack because there were only men in those houses.
ADV POTGIETER: In the letter that you wrote and you were referred to earlier on page 34, point 2 of our papers, you say the following in the last paragraph, - the very last sentence or perhaps I should read the entire paragraph for you just to get the context. You say
Iíve never killed before but the circumstances forced me to fight. I ask for pardon and I will never do it again. It was like terrorizing the community.
MR ZUMA: I was referring to harassing the community because I was not of the view that we should fight, I believed that we should sit down and talk. It wasnít us who started the fight, the other people started attacking us, thatís why Iím saying they were harassing and terrorizing the people because young women and young children were going to be caught in this situation.
MR ZUMA: Iím referring to the whole community in Richmond, their community and our community, they were also going to be affected. Iím not referring to men because men were the people who started the whole violence.
MR ZUMA: I personally, I was attacking young ANC members, not the children and the older people. Thatís what Iím saying. I didnít intend to harass or terrorize women and children because they couldnít defend themselves. I wanted to attack those who attack, those who terrorized the other people like me.
ADV POTGIETER: Now we know that a number of women were killed, some very seriously injured and at least one child as well - in fact it was put to co- Applicant Mr Gumbi earlier, that after one person was injured in the early attack in your area, about twelve people were killed in the attack of your own group. Are you saying that the action, the conduct of members of your group including women and children - that was terrorizing the community?
ADV POTGIETER: Iíll repeat it. Are you saying, trying to say that the conduct of members of your group in killing these women and this one child that we know about here - was terrorizing that community?
MRS KHAMPEPE: Mr Zuma, I have very few questions for you as I know you donít like questions. In your application, you stated that when an attack was launched in your area by the ANC people or alleged ANC people, you shot them and after a while I presume they retreated and you then later attacked them at night. That appears in your application, did you complete this application yourself?
MR ZUMA: Thatís correct. I forgot some of the things in the application because I completed it long ago and we had to complete other forms later so I canít remember what I wrote in the beginning. I thought maybe those papers were thrown away because we were given new applications and I thought maybe we didnít get response from the first one so when we had to complete the second forms I was confused, I didnít know what happened.
MRS KHAMPEPE: Did you and your colleagues, other IFP members engage in any fight with the people who came to your area to launch an attack on the 23rd of June because this is what appears in your application. Do you want me to read the portion?
The IFP and Inkatha people were fighting at Ndaleni. ANC members arrived in the evening at Nkobeni to attack - we fought. After that we attacked them at their place. We fought at that night.
MR ZUMA: Yes, we engaged in a fight at Makota because the people were fighting us from ...(inaudible) place. As Iíve explained before, there is a bit of confusion while I was filling the forms and we did so many things in prison - sometimes you lose your mind. I canít remember some of the things. I get confused sometimes.
The people attacked us, we ran away, we came back and had a meeting and we decided to attack them, thatís what happened. I might get confused but this happened at prison because when I was there, there was nothing I could do, I just got confused. May I explain that I did kill the people and I donít dispute the fact that I was there and I was involved. Nobody sent me to go and do it.
MRS KHAMPEPE: Now we are just trying to find out the conflict in your area and thatís why these questions are being posed to you and to find out if what you committed, you committed for a political objective or not as we are required to do so by the Act, you must understand that. How many times had your area been attacked by the ANC before the 23rd of June 1991?
MR ZUMA: I would personally think about thirty people died at Tawandeni and some people were not even buried. You could even say their heads ...(inaudible) all over the place. That was the incident where ...(inaudible) car was burnt and nobody was arrested for that incident. So many people were also killed with burning tyres and many people died. I canít give a specific number.
MRS KHAMPEPE: In your evidence you stated the reason why you launched this attack was because you were no longer sleeping because of the attacks, are you referring to the attacks that youíve just enumerated which started in January of that year?
MR ZUMA: I will think they did discuss these issues however we didnít know exactly what they were talking about. We had to sit at our places and protect our families because people were attacking us and we couldnít get a chance to be where they were discussing these issues but I used to hear from rumours that they did sit and discuss these issues - I was waiting at home to protect my family.
MRS KHAMPEPE: So there wasnít a single meeting held in your area to discuss political issues of the time other than the fighting which was taking place in Richmond, I mean itís a well known fact that Richmond has always ...(intervention)
MR ZUMA: I donít have information in that regard. As Iíve explained, I was at the border area and I had to stay at home, not go into town or any place and I had to see and protect our homesteads, only women could go to town. And we had to sit at home and protect our families.
MR ZUMA: We were just searching, investigating - he was a person whom we knew, we didnít know that we would find ammunition from him. We were just passing and because he was on our way so we entered his place to ask for ammunition and he took those ammunition which he had and he gave them to us and we got these few arms and left.
MR ZUMA: We knew that we might get ammunition from him because he was also prepared in most cases because he knew that people will attack. We were just trying to try my luck by going to his place, we didnít exactly know that weíd find ammunition. Even from me, people would have got ammunition so we thought he might have some and we went there. As Iíve said, we got different ammunition from him and thatís what I want to make clear.
"We ran out of ammunition and we went to Mr Mtusi to get ammunition - not we were passing by - we went there to get it".
MRS KHAMPEPE: Thatís not what you said, this is what Judge Wilson is saying - thatís not what you said in your evidence in chief. I asked you the kind of ammunition you obtained and you were also very explicit in that regard but you stated that you went there to obtain ammunition and by the way thatís also what Mr Gumbi said to us earlier on. You had to go in and obtain further ammunition after you had run out of ammunition. It wasnít a by the way thing ...(intervention)
MR DE KLERK: Mr Chairman, maybe I can assist the Chair. I do have my consultation notes with me that was taken long before this hearing and in my consultation notes it is as the witness I testifying - that it was on the way. If that could assist the Chair in any way.
MR ZUMA: Those were homemade guns and some R1ís. Those were the firearms which we collected when people were attacking so when they were running away we could collect them. The firearms that we had, we got them from our attackers because when they start running we could get them and the homemade guns we were able to make ourselves.
RE-EXAMINATION BY MR DE KLERK: One question Mr Chairman maybe two. Was it the position during that time that most of the people actually had weapons, either manufactured weapons or homemade weapons - most of the people in that area of Richmond were walking around with weapons because of this war?
MR RATHMAN: Thank you Mr Chairman. I would like to call one witness, a survivor of the first part of the attack, Doctor Lela Dlamini. Mr Chairman Iím not quite sure what the arrangements are for witnesses giving evidence at all.
MRS DLAMINI: It was on the 23rd of June 1991 on Sunday. We were from a meeting at Ndahwa. It was Richard, Elsie, Happy and myself, we were going back home. We arrived at home, we found my mother. Elsie and Happy wanted to go back to school. We were from a meeting for peace between IFP and ANC.
When we arrived at home, my mother gave us food. We sat down and ate the food. Later two young men arrived, they asked for Richard and they took him with them. After some few minutes after they left, the two boys - two young men and Richard, one of his friends came by the name of Mbekeni Mkhize and he asked the whereabouts of Richard. I told him that Richard had been taken away by two young men who were his friends however he said that when you arrived you must wait for him.
This young man waited. Later he started to go and buy and some cigarettes at ...(inaudible) and I asked him - how do you know Richard do not have cigarettes. He didnít sit down, he stood up and went away outside. While he was outside for a few seconds - I was still talking to him while he was standing outside and I heard him saying, shouting - thereís someone peeping through at the corner of the house. I said to him - youíre lying. He said - itís true Aunty, just come out and see.
I get into the door - there was a full door and a half door and I didnít close the half door, I stand at the big door and I peeped through. While I was peeping through I heard a gunshot and Mbekeni was shot at the door. After a time we couldnít talk and I saw Mbekeniís cap falling and he started running and I crept back into the house and I told my mother that they are killing us. I went to hide behind the door - my mother ran away and entered into one of the skins which were for the cows that we killed for a particular ritual. Some other people - the females didnít run away because they thought they wonít be killed because theyíre women. They went to the back side of the house or at the extreme end of the house inside and stayed there. There was still a candle burning and the fire was still burning.
MRS DLAMINI: After that the young man, after he ran away I hid behind the door. The people arrived. One of them was in front of them holding a gun and he put the gun through the door and I moved back. He pulled out the gun and he pointed it at the two young ladies who were standing at the end of the door, he shot the first shot and killed the first one, then shot the second one.
MRS DLAMINI: Yes. After that this half door which was supported by two iron bars - one of them said get inside and stab them with spears. They took off this half door and got into the house. Whilst in the house - and we could see that they were going to, the other is going to stab with the spears. They ran towards where my mother was lying under the skins and they took off the skins. My mother said ...(inaudible) to write and they started stabbing at my mother and the children, the two ladies started crying, saying why are you shooting at us, why are you killing us because we are not fighting and the old woman asked - why are you killing us but nobody answered.
MRS DLAMINI: After they injured them I heard my mother giving the last breath so I called the other sisters who were at the back of the door. The one that I saw, it was Pitchana Gumbi, he was together with the attackers. After that they left the area saying they have killed them. One of the dogs which were at the house started barking so the dog followed them and they didnít get out through the gate, they went out of the house through different directions. After they left, I heard gunshots in the direction of the ...(inaudible) family. Thatís were they killed Kunene, Zondi, the mother in the house and a young lady from that family.
After that incident I tried to get a car to help those who were injured. I saw a van which was yellow in colour passing. My mother asked me to stop it to take her to the hospital and I discovered that it was a police van so I didnít stop it. After that I left on foot and I tried to wake up the neighbours. Most of them had ran away and I happened to end up and the Kunene family. I knocked at the door, they couldnít open. I told them who I was and they opened the door. At that house I found the Kunene family, some of the members of the family had already passed away. I told them what happened to my family.
Those women from the Kunene family they told me that the people had also killed their mother and father, Mr Zondi and a young child. I said to them, letís go and I told them, letís go and I was holding a match on my hand. We went to the place, when we arrived I was the first one - we lit a match - we found Mrs Knobo lying on the ground - was cut - the throat was cut and the blood was flowing on the ground and there was a nine year old child lying next to the grandmother. We couldnít find Johnson Kunene but we find Zondi lying on top of a cupboard at the extreme end of the house.
MRS DLAMINI: I saw the car before going to the Kunene family, it was a van which ...(inaudible) the people who were inside - this was the van that we usually see which was used by the riot squad. Those were the people dressed in camouflage clothes. When we came out from the Kunene house, I asked one young man to come and help us to take my mother and my younger sister to hospital because one of them, Elsie, has already passed away. I put clothes over him and put a pillow below the head and I asked him to help me to take those who managed to survive.
When I arrived at home I couldnít find my mother where I left her. We started to look around and when I arrived at the kitchen I found my mother, she was standing against the door at the kitchen and I called her and asked her, why whatís happening? She said Happy was looking for you, she wanted some water and I asked did you give the water, she said yes I gave her water and she said that she has already passed away.
I left her to go and find a car to take her to hospital but when I came back she was lying with her face down and she was quiet. I said to my mother, since you can still walk we canít sit here because they might come back so letís leave this place and try to find a way out to go to the school where we can find a place to hide. She tried to limp and we walked. I took some clothes and some pillows and we left to a place called Sindane, thatís where we managed to lay for that night - sleep for that night and wait for sunrise to take my mother to hospital.
I didnít sleep them because my mother was crying the whole night until the morning so I tried to nurse her. However before sunrise, I went back home to see how the condition of the other two ladies who were still lying there. It was becoming early and people were gathering to see what happened. When I arrived at home there was a light, the lamp was on when I heard from the neighbours who were hiding ...(inaudible) they said a car came after we left. They saw the car coming into the house and I also saw the wheel marks on the ground.
After some time the police came to tell us that they came and one young man from Dwalane lighted the candle. And the ANC leader Sebiso Kabinda came and he asked who did this and I explained to him that there was one man who was an IFP member was together with these people who attacked us.
MRS DLAMINI: It wasnít the first time to see Gumbi, it was the first time to see him coming to our home at night. I used to see Gumbi holding this knopkierrie with a bolt at the top and nuts at the top. Sometimes when going to collect water from the pipe I tried to run away and he said I mustnít run. When I asked him where was he from, I knew that he was lying and he ...(inaudible) from the Dlamini family and asked whether he knew me and he said yes, he knew me and then he left me and passed towards the direction of one family.
Thatís where we used to - thatís where we slept. And thatís where they asked him whether he was involved in a fight and he refused and he said he wasnít involved. The other time he came and arrived with a young man and this young man in his company is from the Zuma family. They came and asked where are the comrades who ran into this house. The mother from the ...(inaudible) say she didnít see comrades coming into her house.
MR DE KLERK: Mr Chairman, I was not aware that this witness is going to testify, I know that there was a meeting on Friday but it didnít obtain ...(inaudible). It seems that this witness also gave evidence during the criminal ...(inaudible). What she has testified now seems to differ from what I quickly went through on the Judgement. I think itís only fair if I can just be granted the time to ...(intervention)
MR DE KLERK: In these papers I donít see her evidence, that means the typed evidence during the trial itself, itís only the Judgement. If I could get hold of that evidence - I presume it was typed, I would be ready tomorrow.
MR DE KLERK: The reason why itís important Mr Chairman, is that it seems that there is a question in the Commissionís mind or maybe in some minds of the victims if this was a planned attack and if there were people involved in planning this attack in a vehicle being used, this was now actually stated by this witness that there was a vehicle and people with camouflaged clothes and so forth. Out of the Judgement I did not see ...(intervention)
CHAIRPERSON: You had no reason - well you have - there has been cross-examination of both your clients about a vehicle being present in the area at the time and they both denied any such vehicle. I can understand that you may wish to make other inquiries as weíve now had a description of the vehicle which has not been put before. Mr Mpshe, would you be ready to go on, or do you also want ...
MRS DLAMINI: Yes, I understand that theyíre asking for amnesty. Whatever, I donít like the fact that theyíre lying to say that they didnít know or didnít see that there were women inside the house when they were attacking and that there was no light in the house. There was light in the house and there was a moonlight so I would say that they are lying to say that they couldnít see that there were women in the house. To say they ask for amnesty because what they did was a mistake, it wasnít what they intended and to say that they were following their leaders - we do agree with the granting of amnesty if that is the case. However what I donít like is that theyíre lying to say that they didnít see our younger sisters or didnít recognise that they were women.
CHAIRPERSON: All right. This case will not be finished today, we are going to adjourn it to Thursday if that arrangement can be made, if Mrs Dlamini can be available here on Thursday. Is it possible for her to ...(intervention)
CHAIRPERSON: I would suggest that if after listening to the tape tomorrow, you do discover something that you should get in touch with the other representatives and inform them to what it is so if they want to go and verify or check they can do so.
MR MPSHE: Mr Chairman, may I by way of a suggestion, seeing that this matter is postponed to Thursday that because weíve got a matter already on Thursday, that we start earlier than we would normally start on Thursday. Iím worried if it means the Thursday one will have to encroach onto the Friday one but if we start an hour earlier ...(intervention)
CHAIRPERSON: I think ...(intervention) promptly and 9 oíclock because if you look at the Thursday one, it is one Applicant on one - this is where as I recollect it, is the one where he said he was acting as a bodyguard, wasnít it?
CHAIRPERSON: There wonít be a great deal or shouldnít be a great deal of dispute as to that, either itís there or it isnít but I think we start at 9 oíclock on Thursday and we will start with this one on Thursday. This will start at 9. Weíll adjourn this matter now till 9 oíclock on Thursday morning, at the same place. And that concludes todayís sitting. We will now adjourn till 9 oíclock tomorrow morning and we hope we will be ready to start the next matter. I gather there may be some problems there.