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Human Rights Violation Hearings
Type HUMAN RIGHTS VIOLATIONS, SUBMISSIONS QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS
Starting Date 18 July 1996
Names MAEBELA DORCAS PHALA
Case Number 00564
DR ALLY: I just want to welcome the following people who have joined us. Mr Bennie Boshilo, one of the traditional leaders in the area, Elias Nong, a member of parliament, of the traditional parliament here in the Northern Province representing the Traditional leaders.
MRS PHALA: I will talk about my husband who died in 1991 on the first day of 1991. He left home with his friend Joseph Mothiba a cousin. They left at 10 o'clock, they went to Mutabo to see his brothers in law. They left me at home with his mother, he went to a bar lounge. When he arrived with Joseph, they sat there, there was no problem, and they were very happy because their brother in law was there. Joseph Mothiba who was with Joshua Phala, while they were at the gate on their way out and opened their cars, Joseph and Joshua looked back, they saw a person was coming behind them carrying a fire arm. He said to Joseph, "This person has a fire arm", and the man heard Joseph, and saying, "You see a firearm?", and then he shot him below the ear and Joshua fell down. It was said that the person is a soldier, Andreas Dikgale from Dikgale area. I was told that EntrJes killed Joshua. We accepted it as it is, it was in 1993. In August 1993 I'm not sure about the date, I put the 15th in my statement, I was called from home that I should go to the magistrates court.
When I arrived there, I went there with my family to listen to the hearing. When we arrived Andreas Dikgale was there, he had a rifle. While we were sitting there, EntrJes had a lawyer, and we didn't have one. When we entered the court and they started prosecuting him, we the witnesses of Joshua were there, but we were not called, we were not asked anything, we were just there in court to listen as a family. We only heard that the case is finished. When we went out, we were told that the court didn't say anything about us. Even now, today we are just sitting, so we are coming to the Commission to ask the Commission to help us.
MRS PHALA: Dikgale in his explanation, only the lawyer spoke on his behalf, and he was asked whether he had committed a mistake, is he guilty or not? He never said anything, only the lawyer. I only heard when they asked whether he finds him guilty or not, and he said yes.
MRS PHALA: No he didn't say anything, only the lawyer was talking on his behalf. He was just reading a statement in court, only the lawyer was talking, everything was explained by the lawyer on behalf of Dikgale.
DR ALLY: Thank you Mrs Phala, we will definitely try and get those court records, I think that our investigators office has already been trying to get them, so we'll follow it up and try and establish what actually happened. Thanks very much for coming forward, are there any other questions?
PROF MEIRING: I will repeat again, I know it's very difficult, it's not clear why your husband was shot on that day. As you said, there was an inquest which was held on 15th of August 1993 and we are actually still trying to get hold of these inquest records. We have made one attempt and we were not successful but we will certainly make further attempts to try to get hold of these inquest records, but I know that that's not all that helpful for you because you would also like to know what happened but it is receiving attention from the Commission.