Item 1465 - Mandela Statement on the TRC : Statement by President Nelson Mandela on the Truth and Reconciliation Commission

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ZA COM MR-S-1465


Mandela Statement on the TRC : Statement by President Nelson Mandela on the Truth and Reconciliation Commission


  • 1997-07-18 (Creation)

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Transcription of speech made by Mr Mandela

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(18 July 1918-5 December 2013)

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Migrated from the Nelson Mandela Speeches Database (Sep-2018).

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  • English

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I have noted the reports about the statement made by Mr Neil Barnard, the Director General of the Western Cape Province, to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission in connection with assistance given by prominent South Africans to the former National Intelligence Service.
I also take into account the remarks made by Mr Neil Barnard that he does not consider it prudent he should divulge the names of such people.
During the negotiations process both in prison and outside, I had the impression Mr Barnard was a candid and worthy participant. Throughout that period, there never occurred an incident which led to the questioning of his integrity.
I however expect the Mr Neil Barnard appreciates fully the background to the appointment of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. Its mission is to avoid precisely what he is concerned about, the conduct of a which hunt. Moreover, the TRC is expected to assist us come to terms with our past.
The dangerous impression is being reinforced that there are people in positions of authority who may not be loyal to the new dispensation. Not only does this have the potential to undermine the confidence of the people, it brings about the possibility of undermining the strides we have made in promoting reconciliation.
I expect that Mr Barnard will submit the names of the personalities he made reference to in the hearings to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. It is expected of all people who once occupied positions of responsibility and command irrespective of political background, that they shall make a full disclosure to the TRC. The TRC shall then use its mandate and decide under what conditions a public disclosure can be made.
The country must only be informed of our past, the foot soldiers, most of whom acted under orders, need to have as minimal a sense of desertion as possible, while contributing to the process of nation-building and reconciliation.
18 July 1997
Issued by the Office of the President

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Acquisition method: Hardcopy ; Source: Nelson Mandela Foundation. Accessioned on 08/02/2010 by Zintle Bambata




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