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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 It is the product of almost two decades of research and includes analyses, chronologies, historical documents, and interviews from the apartheid and post-apartheid eras.

RS 452: Reconstructed Intelligence file



An ANC underground unit operating from within the country received information from paid security branch sources in the form of reports compiled by the Security Branch.

1.. These reports contained amongst other information, reports about the activities of agents within the liberation movements, and in particular from those agents within the ANC.

2.. For the purposes of record, handling and transportation of these reports to ANC HQ, the coding system of the agents were changed in order to avoid disclosure in the event of interception by the Apartheid State Security forces.

3.. This report covers the activity of a particular source coded by us as "IMOOI". The actual reports as processed by us are enclosed with this analysis. It should also be mentioned that the actual SB report is available in microfilm form- retrieval of these reports is possible, albeit with some difficulty.

4.. Source IMMOO1 was registered with the Security Branch as RS452. It should be mentioned that an "RS" agent classification referred to a highly placed source that required special handling procedures or to an infiltration of a security force member into a particular target group.

5.. Lt KZ Edwards handled agent RS452 from the Eastern Gape area. Lt KZ Edwards, at that time, was a senior member of the SB National management structures.

6.. There are two entries on our database corresponding to the activities of agent RS452. One report covers the activity of NADEL, and the other covers the formation of the Henk Van Handel Trust.

7.. The reporting period of both reports is restricted to February 1988 period. No report before or after this date is in our receipt.

8.. The report that dealt with the HVRT was a very detailed one, containing many pages in respect of the founding documents of the Trust. For the purposes of computer records these documents were not included in the database. However microfilm records of them were made. These indicated that the source had detailed knowledge of all matters pertaining to the formation of the trust, and would indicate that the source was very close to the formation of the trust itself. It was also clear that the source had inside thinking to the actual purpose of the HVHT.

9.. On analysis of both the reports of RS452, and based on the experience we had collected at the time, we used the following criteria in the pursuit of possible identification of the source.

10.1.. A senior person to warrant classification of RS status;

1.. The necessity of special handling procedures;

2.. The source is from the legal fraternity who was involved with both the HVHT and NADEL and who had attended that particular meeting of NADEL;

3.. The source is either from the Eastern Cape area or known to the handler who comes free the Eastern Cape area, but who most probably works from the Cape Town area;

4.. The source had access to ANC thinking and who most probably was an ANC member;

5.. The handler of the source was careful not to include all reports of the source in the official database of the SB filing system.

Applying these criteria to the reports at hand and by the process of elimination the conclusion reached was that there existed a reasonable basis to investigate BN as a possibility.

11.. Our investigation revealed that BN returned to South Africa at the end of 1997 after spending some time at ILO in Geneva. That he indeed was involved in NADEL and attended that particular meeting. That he was working out of Cape Town and more importantly was involved in the setting up of the HVHT.

12.. Further analysis of the report and comparison to other information on hand indicated that, whilst in Geneva, BN met with a known COSATU source, namely Maxwell Xulu, whilst the latter was visiting Geneva. The SB, remained silent on the name of BN, in the identification section of Maxwell Xulu's report itself. This at the time was odd and not in keeping with known SB practice, since the SB took all effort to identify all people mentioned in reports of sources.

13.. In addition to the above, in the, report submitted on the HVHT, BN is listed as a trustee of the HVHT. However, it would appear that he was not a trustee of the trust. It was a known practice to include names of sources in the list of names of people given in a report, especially if the report covers a small number of people. This is an intelligence technique so done in order to avoid detection of the source in the event of the source's report been intercepted.

14.. All of the above led us to the conclusion that there was a reasonable basis to suspect that BN was most probably source RS452.

15.. We transmitted this view for further investigation to ANC intelligence HQ.

16.. However, new information as recently came to light. This has been a result of the new prevailing political environment in which access to people with such information is much easier.

17.. It would appear that prior to working for the security branch in the Eastern Cape area, Lt. KZ EDWARDS worked for the then National Intelligence Service (NIS). He was transferred to the SAP SB section in the late seventies or early eighties. During the time he worked fox NlS he was close to NIS members Morris von Creunen, and Mr Hennie Roodt, the latter assumed the directorship of NIS in the late 1980's.

18.. Information provided indicates that BN was recruited by Morris von Greunen in the seventies as an NIS source. It is further stated that the NIS funded BN tertiary education studies. This recruitment was known to KZ Edwards.

19.. It is also stated that Lt KZ Edwards on being transferred to the SB, continued to handle those agents he had knowledge of during his time in the NIS. These agents were thus reporting to two security agencies.

20.. In the specific matter of BN, unknown to him, his information was being shared between the two agencies. This occurred as a result of the close relationship between Hennie Roodt and KZ Edwards.

21.. As a result of the turbulent events occurring within and outside of the country, policy makers were putting tremendous pressure on all agencies with regard to their infiltration of all liberation movements including the mass democratic movement. In order to deal with this pressure some handlers took to the practice of registering a source in more than one agency. This in turn led to "independent" confirmation of source reports at the interdepartmental agency analysis level. This practice became to define the characteristic of stratkom operations.

22.. As a result of the above practice, the information provided by BN and known to Hennie Roodt (NIS) was passed on to KZ Edwards (SAP SB) who in turn registered the information under the source number of RS452. It should be pointed out that this was not an officially sanctioned practice and occurred mainly on ground level.

23.. Further confirmation of BN's role in the NIS occurred as a result of a trip he made to DAKAR as pert of the IDASA's sponsored talks with the ANC in early 1989. It is stated that as a result of his political activities the SB endorsed a travel restriction on his passport. Thus in order for BN to travel on the IDASA trip, the NIS approached the SB with a view to remove the travel restriction, on the basis that BN worked for the NIS. This was done and this information has been confirmed.

24.. The new information provided confirms the reasons why there were only two reports in our database concerning source RS452, and why these reports have a restricted reporting period. It would appear that the SB using a stratkom operation, sought to confirm to their superiors that they in fact have a senior source in both NADEL and in the HVH trust.

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