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This resource is hosted by the Nelson Mandela Foundation, but was compiled and authored by Padraig O’Malley. It is the product of almost two decades of research and includes analyses, chronologies, historical documents, and interviews from the apartheid and post-apartheid eras.




Sending two reports, one from Jackie and another from Brenda about disturbing developments in Sydenham and KwaMashu respectively with regard to the launch of the ANC.  Carl thinks it would be better for Theo and Daniel to be accompanied by another person from the OC e.g. Peter Mayibuye/Popo since J/Chris/Steve are not available.  But Theo/Daniel should still proceed if it is not possible to rope in someone else.

We have a probable security problem at hand.  Francis has been missing since the weekend.  David also did not turn up for a meeting on Monday.  He may have been with Francis on some task weekend.  Nobody knows what their exact program was.  The incident reported in the weekend newspapers, however, has got nothing to do with Vula.

Marsha reports that they abandoned the idea of train transport for launch because they found it would have been a lot more expensive.

Will Theo/Dan see ZOPC?


1.. Have been able to read files on disk after conversion.  No need to send.

2.. Has Andy got his ID?  Have you sorted out his accommodation?  I may need him here for a few days but I do not want to interrupt process of securing above.

3.. Has Daniel's car been attended to?  We need transport desperately here.  Only one car (mine) running.  Glen has to be provided with transport.


A meeting of organizations and concerned individuals convened by the ANC Southern Natal Convening Committee on 15.06.90, and chaired by Comrade Billy Nair, resolved to hold a public meeting to begin the process of establishing an ANC branch in the above areas.  A task force, consisting of 3 persons from each of the above areas (i.e. 18 in total) were appointed to oversee the process of calling the public meeting.  All other persons at the meeting agreed to act as volunteers to make the meeting a success.


There have been three meetings of the task force on the 18.06.90, 25.06.90 and 02.07.90.

At the meeting on the 02.07.90 some members reported that they had seen posters of the Sydenham Residents Association, advertising an information meeting.  Jay Naidoo reported that he had spoken to Andri George of the SRA, who had told him that it was intended simply to be an information meeting, which should not be seen as in contradiction to the meeting planned for the 15.07.90 during which he had told her of SRA's plans.  He said that members of the Convening Committee, has already agreed to attend the meeting.

2.. At the Task Force meeting on the 03.07.90, a delegation was appointed to meet with the SRA to raise their concerns about their planned meeting, which was in apparent contradiction to the broader process.  The delegation was to comprise of Sandy Africa and other reps on the task force, and also Jay Naidoo (Asherville) and Jerry Coovadia (Overport).  Sandy Africa did make several attempts to initiate this meeting, but was finally told by Andri George that the SRA could only meet the task force delegation after 09.07.90.


The meeting was attended by +200 members of the Sydenham community.  Speakers were Virgile Banhamme and Terror Lekota who arrived one hour late, at 8.30.  The meeting successfully allowed the community to reflect their views and concerns.  Questions were ably addressed by Terror Lekota.  After about an hour of questions and answers, a proposal was made by a person from the floor, that the SRA become the body responsible for setting up a Sydenham ANC branch.  A counter proposal was made by Enslin Young, a resident that Sydenham should link up with other areas in setting up a branch, to promote non racialism.  Jeannie Noel then strongly motivated for a separate Syenham branch, saying:

-. that it would certainly be possible to get 100 members in Sydenham.

-. That each of the areas in the region was also capable of setting up their branches.

-. That the logistics of merging branches with 1000 of members would be difficult.

-. There was no need for Sydenham people to go over to Asherville to attend meetings.

-. That it was not the fault of coloured people that they were forced to live in racial group areas.

Terror Lekota then stood up and strongly defended this position.  The counter proposals were then withdrawn and the SRA became the recruiting body.


Sandy Africa approached Sbu Ndebele on the 10/07/90, and informed him of what had transpired at the meeting on the 09.07.90, she also asked him whether speakers had been arranged for the meeting on 15.7.90, he responded by saying that he did not know of this meeting, and that it was not reflected in the ANC diary.  This despite the fact that he had signed the letter of authorization for this meeting and pamphlets had already been authorized and issued in the name of the ANC.   However, he agreed to meet the task force, to discuss both problems (viz. the separate Sydenham initiative) and the agenda for the 15.7.90.


1.. Members of the SRA deliberately avoided a meeting with the task force, so that they could proceed with the plans to form a separate ANC branch.

2.. Members of the ANC Convening Committee supported the initiative of the SRA, knowing full well that another branch meeting was planned for 15/07/90.

3.. The Convening Committee appears not to be treating the meeting on Sunday 15/07/90 very seriously in that they still have not addressed the question of speakers.  There is a concern that there will be no speakers.  The task force has suggested that Comrade Mac Maharaj be one of the speakers at Sunday's meeting.


Activities on the ground with underground members playing a central role initiated a process of establishing a convening committee which will oversee a process of establishing a branch in the area.  A member of the regional convening committee was invited to address a meeting explaining the policies of the movement and its strategy and tactics.  Due to certain problems the planned briefing was not completed and it was arranged that it will be done in the next meeting.  Terror Lekota who was representing the regional committee promised to come tohe following meeting but did not show up without prior explanation.  This angered people particularly the old and it was later established that he instead attended the launching of a branch in Berea.

Activists decided to continue without the regional committee and thus exploited June 16 and the presence of Comrade Zuma and Ndlovu to do the explaining of the policies and planned to later call a meeting to establish a convening committee.  But before this could take place comrades who were recently released from Robben Island were introduced to the people on June 16 commemoration independently without even consulting activists started signing up people for the ANC branch in the area.  They were joined by one other activist in the area, Thembinkosi.  Faced with resistance from the people and confronted by activists on their actions they indicated that they were instructed by the regional convening committee to start a process of establishing a branch and thus they regard themselves as a convening committee for the area.  Sbu was approached as a member of the regional convening committee to explain the situation but indicated that he does not know about it instead comrades must go and ask Terror.  But then Terror was not in the region and thus could not be contacted.

Activists then felt that they should try and work with these comrades (those from prison) and thus organized a meeting with them.  In that meeting comrades told activists that they should elect 10 more people to join their group and co-opted one of the activists to make their group five.  They then said they will be responsible for leadership and the comrades (10) were to do the recruiting and organizing with the help of volunteers.  When activists tried to argue this they were told that the leadership is supposed to consist of people who know politics.  This has created problems since activists felt that they are supposed to do the running around for this group which most people feel is not correct and needs to be changed.  There was supposed to be a meeting on Monday (9/7/90) in which activists led by members of the underground intended to put their position in relation to the whole issue and hoped to solve it.  (Brenda)


The following is summarized content of debrief done on Glen:  Glen sent into country following his repeated insistence to MHQ that he wants to go home.  MHQ selected after +1 year of pressure.  His mission is that he will meet all internally based operatives of M.I.  (He was responsible for assistant operatives in M.I. structure.  Consequently his mission is to:

1.. Assess individual operatives and recommend from there to MHQ representatives of M.I. to regional commanders which MHQ wants to/has formed.

2.. Select from among them individuals for training abroad.

3.. Inform all operatives about regional structures and that they will be incorporated.

4.. Give money to seven (7) operatives R1,000 each.

He is expected to stay for +2 months.  He was provided with R2,500 expenses, an ID document and passport both in the same name.

More from him is that:

1.. Unknown to MHQ he was given a sketch of a dump in Jessy by Ordinance.

2.. Made standing arrangements for receiving material.

3.. He has to report safe arrival by Sunday - a post card to an address in Harare

Of seven operatives 2 are in Lobby region and 4 in Jessy.

Glen's own thinking was he be integrated and all decisions taken outside be reviewed as the structure saw fit.  He has no intention of going back.  There is a need to contact operatives who need money.  They will also be integrated into existing structures.

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