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Special Report
Transcripts for Section 2 of Episode 53

TimeSummary
01:46One of the targeting of children also is to make them witness atrocities, witnessing their own parents being killed in a very brutal way and when that happens it means that that child is shattered from inside. And it can produce two things, one is a strong sense of revenge, this child will live the rest of his or her life saying I have to revenge, but it can also produce another thing, is that this child will never be able to reconcile and to understand the meaning of normal life, will be traumatized from inside and will become a weak person because he cannot reconcile with what he has witnessed. But the worst of targeting of children is what I’m coming to now, is to take children to participate themselves in atrocities. You have heard about the so-called child soldiers, it is a worldwide phenomenon in which those who are behind this kind of violence, they know that the best way to attack is to plant the seeds of violence in the new generation. It means to transfer the conflict of ...moreFull Transcript and References
04:12We know that in the resistance to apartheid the last decade or two boys as young as ten became activists. When violent conflict started between supporters of the ANC and the IFP in the townships east of Johannesburg in the early 1990s teenagers played a central role. This is the story of playful teenagers who became serious soldiers, the story of the Tambo Slovo self defence unit of Tokoza.Full Transcript and References
04:38‘The Tambo Boys: Children and War, Report by Benedict Motau.’Full Transcript
05:29The war in Tokoza started in 1990 but most of us were not yet involved in yet, we started taking heed of the violence in 1991. We then realized that people were dying where we stay. It was said that only Xhosa were being killed, but it was not the Xhosa only. People from our areas were also being killed. So in 1991 we tried and consolidate, but because of being under pressure we did nothing, we started in 1992.Full Transcript
06:03For youths like Wanda Mchacho Mabaso, whose family was wiped out during the East Rand violence, joining up together as boys and facing the conflict head on was the only solution.Full Transcript and References
06:16We tried to get those gents then it happened that we tried to combine all the gents, because there were many places there was Two-sticks, Ndofire, Jamaica, Shabangu Mnyane, those from Fire all those things. I’ll say we’d all meet when playing soccer between different teams, eventually to combine forces, still living at Phenduka. It then turned out that we did not trust each other, so we then tried to fundraise. Then there was one of our friends, his name is Bongani, we call him Maponya The Gents, whose parents have a shop. He tried to help us with money then we bought an AK 47. The name of that AK was called ‘dead body,’ ”S’dumbu.” As The Gents, long before we used the AK it turned out that we are being forced to join Inkatha. We must go and patrol, we must now also go and guard another section, so that the Ndabazimbi boys do not attack. No one told the other out of all the Phenduka boys that the situation was now bad. We all ran away and then met at the shops and there ...moreFull Transcript
07:20Brothers of Tokoza played an important role in youth here in Tokoza why does it make them angry that we smoked drugs, which as Gents we smoke for courage. That made them very angry, but they understood our situation, because to handle a gun, shoot and defend is not something you can just do ordinarily. Sometimes people would make you angry and what hurt us most was that we have left our parents on the other side and our parents’ houses are on the other side. They’re also now moving, and you see to leave your roots and dignity in the veld, that can never be right. Full Transcript
08:14Its 1997, six years after the political conflict started in the East Rand. For the Tambo Slovo self defence unit those past years were the most frightening and hardest years of their lives, but the question remains, what about now?Full Transcript
08:33Money, going back to school, sports facilities, many things, because if you look around us, we’re talented but we have no resources, job skills. There are some of us who are skilled but there’s no work. We also need training centres and so forth. // We’re still youth, it’s far where we’re going and we want to get there, we want to be like our parents and we want to add more than our parents, but we need help, we’re disturbed in our life, in a short time because of the violence, because we had to have guns. Full Transcript
09:11Mahlengi Bengu is chairperson of the National Youth Commission which has been set up to address the needs and aspirations of youth in South Africa. // We think that demilitarization as a principle must be accepted by South African society, believe that in fact young people in this country and in general what you call children of wars have been highly militarized precisely because of where this country comes from. The key challenge that faces this country is to create programmes that will ensure that when you talk about demilitarization you don’t do so in obstruction. You talk about demilitarization and say what kind of skills, what do these people need and therefore how best to reintegrate them into mainstream or into normal society if I may use the term.Full Transcript
09:59Tokoza SDUFull Transcript
 
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