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Special Report
Transcripts for Section 4 of Episode 50

11:42If the South African state of the 1980s was an iron fisted Samson then its Goliath was the barehanded township youth. The sprawling windswept plains of the Cape Flats was no exception. Here too a breed of urban teenagers took on the state: innocent, brave, committed. Many of these young comrades who lived and fought revolution now face another challenge; they struggle to confront the future, armed only with a badge of honour of having been fighters.Full Transcript and References
12:15‘Fighters then, forgotten now: Laaitie comrades of the Cape Flats, Report by Gail Reagon.’ // In Cape Town last week young adults gathered to speak about human rights violations against them as teenagers. Three were partially blinded, victims of random police shootings. This story is about the ones who chose to be comrades, who were actively punished by the government for taking that decision, who were detained, tortured and betrayed and who today carry their scars within. Moegamat Williams was a member of the Bonteheuwel Military Wing, (BMW) a grouping involved in semi-military operations on the Cape Peninsula.Full Transcript and References
13:10I haven’t even reached 12 yet. I wasn’t even in standard five yet. That’s when I became wanted by these people who call themselves the justice system, but we all know that they were the injustice system. In 1987 nearly the whole organisation I represent here today was arrested. I was still on the run, they couldn’t find me. And then what happened was some Boers told people in my organisation they’re not really looking for me, because I was the informer. // And then comrades dealt out their own rough justice. // The first thing that happened, my own brothers hit me over the head with a very heavy object. I still don’t know what it was. I fell down to the ground, my clothes were ripped off, petrol was thrown over me and I was set alight by my own brothers who I believed in. // Moegamat was saved by a priest, but a few months later at 14 he was detained under section 29. // After 10 days in Macassar police cells I tried to commit suicide by hanging myself with my tracksuit ...moreFull Transcript and References
15:02Sandra Adonis and her late husband, Jacques were both student activists who joined the Bonteheuwel Military Wing. They were constantly on the run. Jacques was detained for nine months and very badly tortured. It changed both their lives. // My life started being a mess. My husband was quite … he would sometimes go off his trolley, he would be like a mad person and because he knows that his anger, his frustrations that he felt at that time was supposed to be directed at the state, but because I was the nearest person to him, he lashed out. And always afterwards he would say he’s sorry but as I said, how long can a person take somebody saying sorry to you. Just like these very Boers who have been interrogating us and torturing us is trying to say to us today, we are sorry, we didn’t mean that. We don’t need their apologies. Well I don’t need them, because I think my life is messed up as it is, directionless. I mean, I’ve lost my education and I’ve lost my childhood ...moreFull Transcript and References
17:08Julian Stubbs and Dee Dicks were detained with five other students in 1985. Charged with public violence they each spent a year at Pollsmoor Prison in Cape Town. Till today they do not know why. // At the time we were heroes and I didn’t feel as if it affected me at that time, but now it seems as if it’s getting worse now. So, all I want to do now is like cry and it angers me because I’m not in control of my crying and my self-esteem and confidence is really low at present. It’s very difficult for me and sometimes I’m still directionless and unfocused, which is always the experience that I lived through in the eighties, is forever in my mind. It’s become quite difficult for me to cope and it’s making me very angry because at that time I could and now I can’t. Full Transcript and References
18:32Riefaat Hattas too was detained and tortured. He still has not come to terms with the experience. // I’m sometimes suicidal. I do not know whether I can carry myself alone. I’m messed up because of what I went through during my high school years.Full Transcript and References
19:02 In a trip from Mitchell’s Plain to Wynberg to Bonteheuwel they went back into the past, piecing together who they were then and what they are now. // We all had different experiences in the eighties and so on but now, we’re all experiencing similar feelings, like the trauma and // …anger the hate… // Yes the hate. // … was the central point for Wynberg for any political activity that would normally come from the ‘Lux.’ Especially during our arrest and after our arrest this was the place that we used to meet and organise strategy and have meetings with lawyers and psychologists and that type of thing and it’s really a bastion, I feel, in Wynberg.Full Transcript
20:08In the past we used to say ‘Amandla Awethu!’ and we used to say ‘A Luta Continua,’ which means ‘power to the people’ and ‘the struggle continues.’ So for us, within ourselves those words are still there, ‘Amandla Awethu! A Luta Continua,’ because we are still fighting.Full Transcript
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