SABC News | Sport | TV | Radio | Education | TV Licenses | Contact Us
 

Human Rights Violation Hearings

Type HUMAN RIGHTS VIOLATION HEARINGS

Starting Date 27 November 1996

Location GUGULETU 7 POLLSMOOR

Day 2

Case Number CT/00116

Victim ZANDISILE S MJOBO

Testimony EDITH MJOBO [mother]

Nature SHOT AND KILLED BY POLICE

ADV POTGIETER

Thank you chairperson. We will put him to work immediately. I call the next witnesses. Andile Mjobo and Edith Mjobo.

Perhaps Chairperson, whilst the witness is settling down - just to make it clear that we have made an arrangement with the photographers that they will be allowed an opportunity to take photographs at the beginning of the testimony of a witness and we have an understanding that they will not come in and do that in the course of the testimony. Because it could become quite destructive, but we do have that understanding, just to explain their presence at this stage.

Ms Mjobo, good morning to you.

MS MJOBO

Good morning.

ADV POTGIETER

You hear the translation over the headphones?

MS MJOBO

Yes, I hear.

ADV POTGIETER

Thank you, and with you is your son Andile.

MS MJOBO

Yes.

ADV POTGIETER

Good morning to Andile as well and welcome.

MR MJOBO

Thank you.

ADV POTGIETER

Both of you will be speaking?

MS MJOBO

No, I will be the only one that is going to speak.

ADV POTGIETER

Andile is just giving you some support. Well thank you Andile for that. Then Ms Mjobo, I am going to ask you only to take the oath, so I am going to ask you to please stand.

EDITH MJOBO Duly sworn states

ADV POTGIETER

Thank you very much, you may be seated. My colleague Dumisa Ntsebeza will assist you in giving your evidence over to him.

ADV NTSEBEZA

Ms Mjobo I will talk to you now, I would like to greet you and also you Andile. Before we start maíam, are you aware that Zanisile also gave us a statement.

MS MJOBO

Yes, I am aware of that

ADV NTSEBEZA

But youíve agreed that you are going to - you agree that you are only the one - you are the one that is going to speak here today, to testify today.

MS MJOBO

Yes, I am the only one that is going to testify.

ADV NTSEBEZA

We will talk about Zandisile today. I will give you the opportunity maíam to tell us your story, as you know it, as you know what happened to Zandisile. I want you to tell us how did you hear about this and how do you feel about this matter and what you request from this Commission. What will this Commission do to assist you in order to feel better.

MS MJOBO

Thank you sir. In 1985 the police were after my twins, Zandisile and Zanisile. They were looking all over for them. They would come at my home looking for them and they would be all around the house searching for them and they would keep the doors with their guns and my twins would go on the backdoor and run and they would come in and ask - where are the twins? And we would tell them that we donít know where they are. They didnít spend the night here.

We were suffering because of this treatment. Because they would gather around the house the whole night looking for my twins and they would do this constantly. We couldnít sleep and still 1985, my other son, we sent my other son in the shop and he came that day, saying that Mongazi was arrested and I asked why was he arrested - they said that they donít know, because he didnít do anything.

We went to the police station - we asked why was Mongazi arrested and they said he was throwing stones and Mongazi denied that. He said he didnít do that, but they just arrested him. And we went back to the police station and they released him on free bail. And they said we must look after him.

We went back home with him. On the following day, when we woke up, he was not there. We looked all around the township. We looked for Mongazi and we heard that he went to Cape Town - one of my twins went to Cape Town to look for him and he said that he didnít find him. They told him that he already left Cape Town and he was going to Happy where he was. And we stayed without my son, Mongazi.

And we suffered a lot because the police were also looking for my other son Mongazi. They used to come and ask where he was and we told them that he left and we donít know where he was. And after that the police were kicking the doors every time. Looking for the twins and we told them we donít know where the twins were.

One day they came, at about 10 oíclock, they woke me up, together with my husband. They told us to go to the lounge to sit in the lounge and we - they came in the house and searched the house - we asked them what were they looking for? They said, they were looking for guns, because my sons had guns in the house. And we told them that we didnít see any guns in the house. They searched the whole house, saying that they were looking for this guns.

Sometimes they used to come in the morning and they stayed in the house for the whole day. And we wanted to look for their badge in order for us to identify them, but we couldnít see the badges, because they were wearing the uniform, the dark uniform and my husband couldnít even go to work, because of this.

And my twins decided to leave in 1986 and they disappeared. We didnít know where they were, but one of them use to contact us and tell us that they are all right. We need not to worry. End of Tape 1, Side A Ö this. We told them that

we are not well at home, because of this and they arrested my husband once and my twins ran away. They came here in Cape Town.

And then one day I decided to come here to Cape Town to look for them, because at this time they were not contacting us. And then I told my husband I was going to Cape Town to look for my sons and we both decided to come here in Cape Town and we were told that they were in Athlone. I wanted to go there, but I was not allowed to go to Athlone to look for them and we went back. It was on Sunday, that time, we went back home.

On Tuesday, one police - one black policeman came and he asked me where my husband was. And then I said he was at work. And this policeman told us that one of my twins have been shot.

ADV NTSEBEZA

You can continue maíam.

MS MJOBO

And they told us one of my sons have been shot. And then they told my husband to go to Salt River and he came back, he said that he identified him. He was the one who was shot.

After that, people used to come and pray for us at home, and the police would come and they would ask the people to go away - not to pray for us. They gave us a date for the funeral and we didnít want to bury my son on that day, but we were forced by the police to do that. After that there was no peace at my home, we were suffering. And they were looking for the other twin, and they use - they use to come to try and bribe the person, the people in the township, because they told the people in the township that my son was a terrorist and if someone could come and tell the police where he was, they would get money, they would receive money.

And my son was nowhere to be found, but apparently the police found him. He was arrested here in Cape Town, but I am not sure about the place and then they transferred him to Malmesbury. And then they took him to Victoria. They were torturing him all this time.

After that my husband became sick - as they were looking for my son, they used to arrest my husband. And they used to cover his face with the black plastic bags, asking him where my twin was. They were torturing him all the time. And they were torturing his genitals. And he became sick because of all this. He couldnít even continue working. So he was not working at this time. One day when I looked at him, his ears were bleeding and he suffered a lot until he died. He wanted my twin to be back, because this was affecting him, this disappearance.

What I forgot, is that after we buried the other twin, the following day, a police van came and then the police took me with the van. They took me to the police station and they asked me who were the leaders in the funeral. Who were the people giving speeches there in the funeral. And then I told them I did not know, because I was not looking at the people who were talking there, because I was still in pain, because my son had tied.

And then they said that my husband has told them everything. So, I should tell them everything. And they were lying, because my husband didnít say anything to them. My husband died in 1987. We were suffering all the time and the police were rude. They were not respecting us, they were beating us, . assaulting us all the time. They used to take the whole family and arrest the whole family. Even my son next to me was still very young at the time. We were in pain and we were suffering a lot.

ADV NTSEBEZA

Let me ask you a few questions maíam, are you ready? You said that in 1986, because the police use to come to your house and assault you, looking for the twins, and your twins decided to leave the home, do you still remember when exactly was this?

MS MJOBO

I think it was around January, early January. But they used to contact us, they used to come at night and contact us to tell us that they were well, but in February they disappeared.

ADV NTSEBEZA

So, it was about January and February in 1986 - where were you staying at that time?

MS MJOBO

We were staying in Mbekweni in Paarl.

ADV NTSEBEZA

After their disappearance, you decided to come here to Cape Town. Were you from Paarl?

MS MJOBO

Yes, I was from Paarl.

ADV NTSEBEZA

When did you come here in Cape Town?

MS MJOBO

It was in 1986.

ADV NTSEBEZA

After their disappearance?

MS MJOBO

Yes after their disappearance.

ADV NTSEBEZA

And then here in Cape Town, where did you stay?

MS MJOBO

I stayed with my sister here in Crossroads. We stayed there.

ADV NTSEBEZA

Were you staying in Crossroads?

MS MJOBO

Yes I was staying with my sister in Crossroads.

ADV NTSEBEZA

And then you said there was this black policeman who told you that your son is dead, where was this?

MS MJOBO

It was in Paarl. This policeman came to tell us this news in Paarl, it was on Tuesday. He came and tell us that my son has been shot.

ADV NTSEBEZA

Were you in Paarl at the time?

MS MJOBO

Yes, I was in Paarl.

ADV NTSEBEZA

Do you know the name of this policeman? The black man who came to you?

MS MJOBO

His name is Gala, but I think he is on pension now.

ADV NTSEBEZA

He was known as Gala. Was he a sergeant or...[intervention]

MS MJOBO

He was an investigator, his name was Gala.

ADV NTSEBEZA

Did this policeman tell you what exactly happened?

MS MJOBO

No, he did not tell us anything. He just told us that my son had been shot. My husband was still at work at that time and he - this policeman couldnít tell me and then he went to one of my family members to tell this matter and then they waited for my husband to come back from work and then we were both told at the same time - myself and my husband.

ADV NTSEBEZA

What I want to know, is that, was this policeman telling you because he knew the family or was he sent by the police to tell you?

MS MJOBO

He was sent by other policemen to tell us, he didnít know us.

ADV NTSEBEZA

And then, what happened to the other twin?

MS MJOBO

He was released from prison when my husband was sick.

ADV NTSEBEZA

I was talking about Arthur.

MS MJOBO

Yes.

ADV NTSEBEZA

Is he working now?

MS MJOBO

Yes, he is working in the military in Durban.

ADV NTSEBEZA

He came back in 1990 - Arthur him back in 1990

MS MJOBO

Yes, he came back in 1990, no, it was Mongazi who came back in 1990. He was the one who disappeared and came back in 1990.

ADV NTSEBEZA

And then, what about Arthur, when was he released?

MS MJOBO

He was arrested and then he was released. He was arrested here in Cape Town and transferred to Malmesbury and Victor Venter and then at the time when my husband was very sick, I saw Arthur arriving at home. And then I thanked him for coming back, because my husband was so sick and then he went to the bedroom to look for his father and his father cried a lot.

ADV NTSEBEZA

Shortly you have lost one of your twin - of your twins and the other one was arrested and your husband was arrested and he was assaulted in the prison and your other son disappeared?

MS MJOBO

Yes.

ADV NTSEBEZA

Is that all you wanted to say, maíam?

MS MJOBO

There is one thing I forgot. When the police where looking for the other twin, I didnít - I donít know who told them where my home - where my home was, because they used to come to kick the doors at my home, at my motherís home, because I did not tell them where my mother was staying, but they used to go to my motherís home looking for this twin and my mother was old at that time.

They were assaulting her, kicking the doors and my twin bought another door, because the police kicked the door and it broke. And he - my twin went to buy another door and then they arrested him, saying that he did not buy this door, he stole it. And my mother tried to fight with the police to stop them from arresting my twin.

And at the time of all this, my son succeeded to run away, because my mother was trying to defend him and they assaulted my mother. They kicked her and then he ended up undergoing an operation in the face.

ADV NTSEBEZA

I have a last question. I think that at the time of this you knew that there were seven young men who were shot at the time.

MS MJOBO

Yes, at the time we have already buried my son. They were looking for my other twin.

ADV NTSEBEZA

Where did you hear that your son was amongst the Guguletu 7?

MS MJOBO

We heard this after the funeral when we were told to go to Athlone.

ADV NTSEBEZA

Thank you maíam. Are there any other questions?

MS MJOBO

One other thing is that I would like to thank the witnesses. They have helped me a lot. They came forward and they sacrificed their life to come and testify and I would like to thank them very much.

CHAIRPERSON

Maíam, sometimes we donít believe the stories we hear. And then we are here today listening to the stories from people like you, because we could see you were not staying at peace in your home. Because if one can see you today, one cannot think you were suffering, because your son was killed, your husband was tortured and you were also arrested.

These are the stories that we want our children to remember. We want them to remember that we paid a price in order for us to be free today. We thank you a lot maíam, for what you did in your family.

We say that we hope that the Lord will support and comfort you and strengthen you, because we donít have any more words to comfort you. Your story is so unbelievable, one cannot believe that this things were happening in our country and we want all people of this country not to repeat what happened in the past.

Thank you maíam.

 
SABC Logo
Broadcasting for Total Citizen Empowerment
DMMA Logo
SABC © 2019
>