TESTIMONY Prepared for the SUBCOMMITTEE ON AFRICA of the U.S. HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

by Gay J. McDougall, Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law
Washington, DC, United States
July 23, 1992
Publisher: Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law
35 pages
Type: Testimony
Coverage in Africa: South Africa
Coverage outside Africa: United States
Language: English
Contents: I. THE STATISTICAL REALITY OF SOUTH AFRICA'S VIOLENCE • II. THE ROLE OF SECURITY FORCES IN THE VIOLENCE • III. THE SOUTH AFRICAN GOVERNMENT RESPONSE • A. Expansion of Police presence and Powers • B. Withdrawal of Mercenary Units • C. Overhauling the Hostel System • D. Dangerous weapons Ban • III. CONCLUSION • ADDENDUM • Gay MacDougall testifies about political violence in South Africa that has reached the highest levels ever in its history. McDougall testified that independent observers spanning the political spectrum who have conducted fact-finding missions to South Africa within the last seven months have presented strong evidence that the security forces are a central factor in the political violence that has derailed the process of negotiations. President de Klerk’s response to the escalating violence is inadequate to address the recommendations of his own government-appointed Commission, refute the charges of human rights monitoring groups, or create the necessary confidence in black township residents that the violence will be brought under control by a professional and impartial police force. The testimony includes a newspaper article "I Despair for My Country" by Allister Sparks. McDougall discusses professional hitmen, attacks on commuter trains, taxis, the Human Rights Commission, Independent Board Into Informal Repression, Amnesty International, the International Commission of Jurists, the U.S. Department of State and its Human Rights Country Report on South Africa, Nelson Mandela, the African National Congress (ANC), the Organization of African Unity (OAU), the European Community, the Commonwealth, the Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU), the South African Council of Churches (SACC), a defiance campaign, the Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) and its Youth Brigade, the anti-apartheid movement, "cultural weapons," the June 17th massacre at Boipatong, law and order, the Police Amendment Act, the KwaZulu Police (KZP), Parliament, the South Africa-based Lawyers for Human Rights, Bophuthatswana, the Legal Resources Centre, Criminal Law Second Amendment Bill, Chief Gatsha Buthelezi, Eshowe, the Goldstone Commission, Peace Action, the Phola Park squatter camp, Watville Township, soldiers, detention without trial, detainees access to legal counsel, judicial review of detentions, Angolan mercenaries known as the 32 Battalion, SADF (South African Defence Force) Special Forces such as 5 Reece, Police hit squads, Koevoet, the liberation struggle in Namibia, migrants from Natal, the Madala Hostel in Alexandra Township, gun battles, the KwaMadala Hostel, Natal Supreme Court Judge Jonathan Didcott, an independent prosecutor, Foreign Minister Roelof "Pik" Botha, the assassination of ANC-affiliated peace activist S'khumbuzu [Mbatha] Ngwenya, Lieutenant General CP van der Westhuizen, Matthew Goniwe, Judge Andrew Wilson, Trust Feed, the United Democratic Front (UDF), Sebokeng, the Attorney General, Chief Mhlabunzima Maphamulo, Johannes Dirk Coetzee, the South African Security Police, General Lothar Neethling, Jacques van der Merwe, the Civil Cooperation Bureau (CCB), Felix Ndimene, the 5th Reconnaissance Commando, Henry Martin, Adriaan Maritz, the right wing Afrikaner group Orde Boerevolk (OB), Sipho Madlala, Mbongeni Khumalo, Military Intelligence, and Nico Basson.
Used by permission of the Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law.
Collection: Elizabeth S. Landis collection, National Archives of Namibia