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Special Report
Transcripts for Section 2 of Episode 35

01:24Frans Stefanus Erasmus and William Basil Harrington were 18 when they joined the police. After their basic training they were posted to war torn KwaZulu-Natal. Here they worked in a riot unit with another young policeman, special constable Nhlanhla Philemon Mdlala. Four years later these three young men were sent to prison for the murder of ANC member Mbongeni Jama.Full Transcript and References
01:54I stood up straight with my one foot on his chest and his throat. Dlamini had his shotgun with him. I told Nhlanhla to shoot the ANC dog. // Of course I had this will of killing Mr. Jama. Because I wanted him to die as well, to follow those people whom he killed, it was IFP members. That’s when I shot him. // After he had been shot I felt relieved. I had made my contribution towards fighting the ANC which was our enemy and trying to stop it in its objectives. // The Amnesty Committee was told of their reasons for killing Jama. They experienced extensive anti-ANC indoctrination in a police subculture which openly favoured Inkatha.Full Transcript
02:50A good policeman at the unit was identified by the amount of hours of hard work he had put in, and definitely you had to be anti-ANC in a very strong manner. // We were shown video tapes and we saw people we were being necklaced by tyres and we saw houses were burnt down and people were killed. We saw all these things in a video tape and all those people who were being killed were IFP members. Now we were told that we must come back to Pietermaritzburg and kill everyone who belonged to UDF or ANC. // And that is how we were trained in the police; that the ANC was the enemy, they were the communists and they were the antichrist. And after several assaults on ANC people I reached breaking point.Full Transcript
03:50They believed that they would not be prosecuted for killing an ANC member. // When I joined the riot squad our commanding officer was Major Terreblanche. He informed me that the ANC, we had to fight the ANC with all our might, that they were our enemies and that if we should be prosecuted or get into trouble in any way he would be there for us. // I was not worried about being prosecuted for a murder or an assault case. I did what I had to do. It was what was expected of me indirectly.Full Transcript
04:30They argued that as riot policemen in KwaZulu-Natal they had to assist the IFP. They said the police was openly involved in IFP gun running and third force activities. // There were weekly meetings and discussions between Inkatha leaders and high ranking officers of the unrest squad. And that is when I realized that the police and the Inkatha were working together. // At the unit it was normal procedure to take firearms from ANC members and give them to the Inkatha’s or sell them to the Inkatha’s. I did not start the system, I was taught as such by the older policemen and I myself taught this to my juniors.Full Transcript
05:14Two objections were raised against setting these three men free. In the first instance, the murder was committed in 1991, a year after the unbanning of the ANC. In the second instance the Jama family believes that the applicants lied to the Commission. // It seems that their story, that they did this with a political motive, must be rejected. They are basically rogue policemen who just got out of line and committed a crime and are now using the provisions of the amnesty in order to get out of prison.Full Transcript
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