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TRC Final Report

Page Number (Original) 56

Paragraph Numbers 32

Volume 1

Chapter 4

Subsection 4

(2) The provisions of subsection (1) shall not be interpreted as limiting the power of the Commission to investigate or make recommendations concerning any matter with a view to promoting or achieving national unity and reconciliation within the context of this Act.
4. The functions of the Commission shall be to achieve its objectives, and to that end the Commission shall-
a facilitate, and where necessary initiate or co-ordinate, inquiries into- (i) gross violations of human rights, including violations which were part of a systematic pattern of abuse; (ii) the nature, causes and extent of gross violations of human rights, including the antecedents, circumstances, factors, context, motives and perspectives which led to such violations; (iii) the identity of all persons, authorities, institutions and organisations involved in such violations; (iv) the question whether such violations were the result of deliberate planning on the part of the State or a former state or any of their organs, or of any political organisation, liberation movement or other group or individual; and (v) accountability, political or otherwise, for any such violation;
b facilitate, and initiate or co-ordinate, the gathering of information and the receiving of evidence from any person, including persons claiming to be victims of such violations or the representatives of such victims, which establish the identity of victims of such violations, their fate or present whereabouts and the nature and extent of the harm suffered by such victims;
c facilitate and promote the granting of amnesty in respect of acts associated with political objectives, by receiving from persons desiring to make a full disclosure of all the relevant facts relating to such acts, applications for the granting of amnesty in respect of such acts, and transmitting such applications to the Committee on Amnesty for its decision, and by publishing decisions granting amnesty in the Gazette;
d determine what articles have been destroyed by any person in order to conceal violations of human rights or acts associated with a political objective;
e prepare a comprehensive report which sets out its activities and findings, based on factual and objective information and evidence collected or received by it or placed at its disposal;
f make recommendations to the President with regard to- (i) the policy which should be followed or measures which should be taken with regard to the granting of reparation to victims or the taking of other measures aimed at rehabilitating and restoring the human and civil dignity of victims; (ii) measures which should be taken to grant urgent interim reparation to victims;
g make recommendations to the Minister with regard to the development of a limited witness protection programme for the purposes of this Act;
h make recommendations to the President with regard to the creation of institutions conducive toastable and fair society and the institutional, administrative and legislative measures which should be taken or introduced in order to prevent the commission of violations of human rights.

32 Briefly stated, the Commission was given four major tasks in order to achieve the overall objectives of promoting national unity and reconciliation. These were:

a analysing and describing the “causes, nature and extent” of gross violations of human rights that occurred between 1 March 1960 and 10 May 1994, including the identification of the individuals and organisations responsible for such violations;

b making recommendations to the President on measures to prevent future violations of human rights;

c the restoration of the human and civil dignity of victims of gross human rights violations through testimony and recommendations to the President concerning reparations for victims;

d granting amnesty to persons who made full disclosure of relevant facts relating to acts associated with a political objective.

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