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TRC Final Report
Page Number (Original) 373
Paragraph Numbers 210 to 225
Violations committed by the PAC within its own ranks
210 The PAC did not have a security division responsible for dealing with suspected dissidents or infiltrators. Violations that occurred within the ranks of the PAC in exile were largely the result of divisions within the PAC leadership, within the military command structure and between APLA members. Evidence before the Commission shows that many such violations took place in the military camps in Tanzania. There are, however, no amnesty applications in connection with these violations, and few victim statements from people who allege to have been mistreated by the PAC in exile.
211 The Commission received statements from families of people who went “missing in exile”, cases for which the PAC was allegedly responsible. They include the cases of Mr Welcome Mncedisi Sabatana [EC0016/96ELN], Mr Mlungisi Michael Mpondo [CT00293/FLA], Mr Edward Tsaitsai Makgato [JB04016/02NPLTM], Mr Goodman Manyana Phiri [JB04241/01GTSOW], Mr Gilbert Nkoane [CT04203/KIM] and Mr Sizwe Douglas Mazungula [EC0098/96TSI].
212 Other recorded cases of killing and attempted killing of PAC cadres, allegedly perpetrated by the PAC, include the following. A cadre known as ‘Mahoyi’ was killed in Tanzania on charges of being loyal to the Azanian People’s Revolutionary Party (APRP) and thereby “destabilising” the PAC. A military cadre known as ‘Chaka’ was killed in the PAC bush camp in Chunya by the PAC high command. He had stolen a pistol during his military training in Guinea. Mr Cohen Ntuli was also killed in the PAC camps during this period.
213 PAC president Potlako Leballo alleged that, in March 1980, about seven of his supporters were killed and that more than 500 PAC members, still loyal to him, including members of the high command, were in detention in PAC camps.
214 Sections 1.4 and 1.5 of the PAC’s Disciplinary Code provided constitutional justification for the way in which political dissent was handled by the PAC leadership in exile. The section on factionalism states:
Where normal processes of free discussion fail to curb factional tendencies, then firm iron discipline should come into play, and factional elements, no matter how important, should be chopped off without ceremony.
215 An ex-APLA commander said in an interview that, during the 1980s:
Constant vicious beatings and floggings of cadres who did not conform to the new militarist discipline replaced the more democratic culture which respected the human rights of the individual APLA soldiers. Members of the Military Commission did not only turn a blind eye to these abuses but are reported to have actually condoned them.
216 In the manuscript of a book that was to have been published in 19857, former PAC director of Foreign Affairs Henry Isaacs alleged:
More persons were murdered in factional strife in the four years under [PAC president John Nyathi] Pokela than in seventeen years under [PAC president Potlako] Leballo. Between June 1982 and January 1985 at least six persons were murdered, their physical elimination sanctioned or condoned by the PAC leaders who accused them or suspected them of being ‘dissidents’.
217 Isaacs also refers to an incident in the Chunya camp when supporters of ousted PAC president Potlako Leballo mutinied and seven of them were killed by the Tanzanian People’s Defence Force (TPDF). He mentions several floggings performed by the APLA high command, confirmed by other sources.
218 Isaacs’ claims are viewed with suspicion by some PAC members, including victims of abuse he refers to in his manuscript. He is accused of having deliberately mixed cases of PAC cadres who died in genuine accidents with cases of abuse of human rights.
219 The PAC stated in its submission to the Commission’s hearing on the armed forces that:
We have never had a single detention camp, prison or any form of institution that was employed to violate members’ human rights. No single individual can genuinely claim any experience of systematic torture, abuse or detention in any of our facilities or camps. (Brigadier Dan Mofokeng).
220 The PAC accounted for the deaths of Mncedisi Sabatana and others by classifying them as “disciplinary actions”. APLA commander, Brigadier Mofokeng said:
While we regret any loss of life as a result of our disciplinary actions, we, however, still remain proud that all the disciplinary actions that were taken fell within the confines of our disciplinary code and oath of allegiance.
221 The death of Sabatana, in particular, is categorised as an execution and is justified as follows8:
A limited number of APLA members were executed, mostly for acts of destabilisation and mutiny. These members were executed by orders of the APLA commander who, in his own capacity, determined the individual who had to perform the task.
222 Brigadier D Mofokeng committed the PAC to presenting the Commission with a list of those APLA members who were executed. This was not received.
223 The PAC was also responsible for some violations against its own members inside South Africa after 1990. Mr Mduduzi Ngema [AM3681/96] applied for amnesty for the assassination of an APLA member who was alleged to be a police informer. Mr Malusi Morrisson [AM3681/96] applied for amnesty for abducting APLA spies and handing them over to the ‘APLA Interrogation Unit’ in Umtata.
224 The Commission received a statement from Ms Vuyiswa Zola Ngendane [JB05364/ 02NPPTB] who alleged that her father Mr Selby Temba Ngendane was shot and killed by several balaclava-clad PAC gunmen outside his Northcrest house in Umtata on 4 October 1990. Ngendane was a founder member of the PAC National Executive Committee in April 1959 and secretary for foreign affairs. In 1963, he was sentenced to six years on two counts of leaving the country illegally. He gave evidence at the ‘Bethal 18’ trial of PAC and black consciousness leaders. He was a member of a London-based Sobukwe Forum which contested the legitimacy of the Dares Salaam-based PAC Central Committee. Circumstantial evidence points to an assassination by PAC members.
225 The PAC’s armed struggle continued after its legalisation in February 1990 and APLA – which had up to that time managed very few attacks within South Africa – secured bases in the Transkei from which they conducted a series of attacks on civilian targets between 1992 and 1994. On 16 January 1994, the PAC announced it had suspended the armed struggle.
THE COMMISSION FINDS THAT A NUMBER OF PAC MEMBERS WERE EXTRA-JUDICIALLY KILLED IN EXILE, PARTICULARLY IN CAMPS IN TANZANIA BY APLA CADRES ACTING ON THE INSTRUCTIONS OF ITS HIGH COMMAND. IT FINDS THAT MEMBERS INSIDE THE COUNTRY BRANDED AS INFORMERS OR AGENTS AND THOSE WHO OPPOSED PAC POLICIES WERE ALSO KILLED. ALL SUCH ACTIONS CONSTITUTED INSTANCES OF GROSS VIOLATIONS OF HUMAN RIGHTS FOR WHICH THE PAC AND APLA ARE HELD TO BE RESPONSIBLE AND ACCOUNTABLE.7 South Africa’s Pan Africanist Congress in the 80s: Chronic Instability And Revolutionary Ineffectiveness 8 ibid,p 30