About this site

This resource is hosted by the Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory, 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 It is the product of almost two decades of research and includes analyses, chronologies, historical documents, and interviews from the apartheid and post-apartheid eras.

23 Aug 1990: Hitchcock, Francis

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POM     I'm talking with Francis Hitchcock a member of the Conservative Party who was the Conservative Party candidate at Umlazi. Perhaps you could begin with your campaign in Umlazi, which had been a Nationalist seat traditionally, and you more than tripled the vote.

FH     We managed to increase our support by approximately 115%.

POM     Could you tell me the kind of campaign that you ran that had such an appeal to voters?

FH     Yes, I think the success that we had was the result of the new direction that the present government has decided to follow, to which we in the Conservative Party are totally opposed. The Conservative Party is the old National Party. They have changed course, we have changed the name.

POM     So when you reach out to voters what kind of a platform are you reaching out on?

FH     Well the main policy of the Conservative Party is a policy of partition, partitioning, some people will equate it with apartheid, or some people say apart 'heid'; you've probably been briefed on what the word apartheid means, apartness. That is what it really means, that's the Afrikaans word for apartness. And of course the 'heid', which is our suffix, is pronounced "height" and this is the connotation that many people, especially in the United Nations, attach to the word apartness now. Anyhow, partitioning as we in the Conservative Party propound it or advocate it, is total separation.

POM     When you talk about partition to people, what did you give them to understand about what it meant?

FH     First of all the campaign started off with an anti-government direction of opening up everything to all races. The policy of the present government to us seems to lead to total integration, one man one vote in a unitary state. Now we are opposed to that. In the first place because nowhere in Africa have we found where a policy of one man one vote is applied, that you have one man one vote in an election it's one man one vote once; totalitarian, a one party state and that's all. Here and there you'll have an election but only for the President. Zambia, for instance, that is two countries north of us, at one stage had elections only for the President and the President was nominated by the government. So it was tokenism, if you can call it that even. They voted only for that particular man. Now we have various experiences and examples throughout Africa. And there is nothing in Africa that indicates to us that if we follow that type of pattern that the white man's position will be safe in this particular country, the Republic of South Africa.

POM     What do you mean by safe?

FH     Safe, exactly what I say. We have found, and I'm sure that you people in the United States and in United Nations and all over the world know very well, that once a black nation takes over from the old colonial governments, of course we don't want colonialism, we're an independent country, but once the blacks take over the white man's security flies out the window. They possess their properties, they expropriate, they just go to town. The problem, as far as I can see it, is that Africa needs a different type of democracy, if you will, than what the western countries have. We haven't had an example where a western type of democracy works in an African state. When I say African state then I think I primarily refer to Sub Sahara. In North Africa you have the Arabs, the Egyptians, which is again a different type of nation, far removed from us. But I'm particularly referring to the African, the black African sub-Saharan people. Do you want me to elaborate on, say, fears?

POM     Yes, I want you to talk about what, when you were talking to the voters in Umlazi, what were the fears that they expressed to you. Did you talk to many, as you must have, people who had voted for the National Party and were now going to vote for you and what specific reasons did they give for doing that?

FH     May I just correct the assumption that I spoke to them on fear. I never used the word fear in my campaign except when it was mooted by somebody else. There are many fears though. The white man in South African is a western civilisation descendent where the black man in African has a totally different culture and type of approach to life. Let me give you an example. If a Zulu should die in a hut, you know they have the hut style of homes in their rural areas, if somebody should die in that hut then they burn the hut down. If you have a staff of Zulu's working for you, as I had, my profession was headmaster and at the various schools I had large black staffs. If one of them would die on the premises or was taken from the premises sick to hospital or to his rural area and died there, then they all want to leave. That's their superstition. Another example of their culture and their superstition is that one of the nations, I don't want to mention the name specifically because I don't want to become too involved, but one of the nations is not permitted to plant a tree in their territory because every square inch or square centimetre of land belongs to the king. And if they should plant a tree, in their culture or their superstition or their way of life, then it applies possession of such property.

POM     Which nation is this?

FH     Well I said that I wouldn't like to mention it but it is the Zulu in their KwaZulu territory. Now that to me is in the first place poor economy because they chop the trees down for fire, for building, they never replace them. Now the western Christian type of democracy is a world apart. We don't belittle them, I don't look down upon the blacks, not at all, but I say we are different. We are completely and totally different. They cannot assimilate, or if you wish to put it the other way around, we cannot assimilate into their culture. We have certain standards and norms. You people overseas, the whites, the Americans, the western people, refer to Africa as a third world and they refer to South African whites as the first world. Now I don't have to explain the difference between a first and a third world. Now we don't want a third world standard of living. We have brought about what was brought about, not on the sweat, or through the sweat of the blacks as people are prone to say. No, we have brought it with our ingenuity, with our sweat along with theirs, yes, we have worked together.

     Now when I approached people in the Umlazi election, that's what you want to talk about, they talked to me about fear, many of them, many, many every day. I can virtually state categorically every day. Number one they wouldn't like integrated schools because immediately the standard of education will deteriorate among the whites. Because I think anywhere in the world the pace of the class is as fast as the lower half of it. Now we don't want mixed schools. You've tried it in America with bussing and all that. I've just read, in fact I've got it on my desk, somebody sent to me from America facts from various newspapers and I'm sorry I didn't bring it along, how they have found, various education authorities, that the forcing situation did not work. It didn't uplift, shall I say, the white section of the population's education. Now we don't want that. Moreover, at the moment the whites are paying 92.4% of all taxes and we are out numbered five to one approximately by all the other races. The other three races together pay 7.6%. I don't think that anywhere in the world will you find the amount of money, for instance, spent on housing for the poorer section of the population. The number of schools. Now out of 92.4% we carry the country financially, not because we deprive them from becoming economically strong, not because we deprive them of anything. De Klerk yes, he says yes, that's what we have been doing all along. Well we challenge him and he is already running into serious difficulties, into extremely serious difficulties. Now, we provide schools, they burn them down. We provide houses, they don't pay their rent. We provide power, energy, water, they don't pay. You've been here a few days so you've probably followed that. At the moment the natural school population increase among the blacks total 250,000 approximately per year, or a quarter million if you wish. That will demand approximately 15,000 new teachers to be trained every year. It will require approximately 300 large schools at approximately three billion rand. Where does the money come from? Where must it come from? I don't think any nation in this world has ever had so much done for them because of their own incapability. I am generalising, that is true, but the ones that become independent are a small percentage, a very small percentage. We give them houses. We will never catch up with the backlog, never, because every year the backlog in housing is greater because they multiply, I don't have to tell you, they can have ten wives if they like. There was one old man in the Transkei that had 99 wives, he didn't even know all his children, and he was a millionaire. I mean, all right, he is really the great exception, a millionaire. But they all have one, two, three, four, five, six wives. The more daughters they have the more prosperous they regard themselves because their daughters are sold off into marriage for auction or money. So the more daughters they have the richer they regard themselves. But who is paying for all those new mouths that are being born? I'm just talking, you must tell me if you want to gear my discussion in a certain direction. But these are the things that we hear.

POM     The issue of education.

FH     The education. They tell you they need the health. Let me tell you about health: King Edward Hospital, Coronation Hospital in Johannesburg, King Edward here, always berated and run down. A black woman can have a complete confinement, total confinement at a cost of R2-50, whereas a white woman in South Africa, my daughter-in-law just had a little one, an infant, and it cost my son R300 a day just for a bed. So you can go to a provincial hospital where it will still cost you about R300. A black person can come into King Edward hospital and have the best in heart surgery, an open heart operation, they get it for R12-50, we've got to pay R24,000. Now you see there is no comparison. It is give, give, give, give, and it's ask, ask, ask. They are always asking and demanding. They believe that they must have prosperity before education. We put it the other way around. But whatever way you put it the laws have been scrapped for their benefit in business, to make business operations easier for them. If I want to start a little business, I got to comply with X number of laws. They want to start a business all they have to do is go and get their permit and start a little business on the pavement of somebody else's shop.

POM     That is education, health, what other concerns were raised?

FH     That people are scared of? The style of urbanisation at the moment, the squatting business. Now Durban is a city of probably approximately 250,000 whites, we have officially four million blacks squatting around Durban who have no jobs, no houses, they just come and they go to a vacant piece of land whether there is water or sewage or services or anything. Not at all, they just squat there overnight. There are places here where you get up to a thousand a night, just coming in, squatters. We've got to provide the services. There's another thing that we fear. The government's new Regional Service Councils. It is another way of redistributing wealth or finances, money, from the white man to the black man. You know that is the new thing now, they want a redistribution of wealth. I have said recently I wonder if it is not better to have a redistribution of wealth, and I went by the 24,000 rand from open heart operations against their 12 rand; no white man in a middle income group, or salary group, earns that much more per month than the blacks. So, another thing that we fear is their style of life. They are very aggressive people. They fight, you know about the fights in Natal, that is not a new thing. That is as old as South Africa is old. Sundays and Saturdays are holidays and they fight. Somebody would hit somebody in the mines and the families would fight where they have the fields here. That is the order of the day, that type of thing. Another thing that we fear, or the people fear, is the lifting of the Group Areas, people say that is a very cruel system. Now, you have it in America, where blacks move in, white property values drop right down, the bottom drops out. And we have exactly the same here except the only difference, and people always find a difference for South Africa, and that is institutional lines, whatever. Maggie Thatcher - what do you call them, terrorists? But in England our terrorists are Freedom Fighters in her book. In England people that terrorise them are terrorists. Why do you make the difference? Why do you make the distinction? But here they've got the vote, in England they've got the vote, the blacks have also got the vote here, they've got votes in their traditional homelands. Let me tell you something about South Africa, I don't know how much you know about the country and obviously you've ...

POM     We know about the homelands and ...

FH     You know about the tradition of the homelands? Let me just add something. The Tswana in Bophuthatswana know less about the Zulu in KwaZulu then what the Norwegian would know about the Italian. They don't even speak each other's languages. Sometimes they cannot communicate because there is no language that is common and unless one of them would probably know or both of them would know English. Because in that part of the country they speak Afrikaans and the second language here, they speak English as a second language. All right. Now when England governed this part of the world they started this grand apartheid which is the homelands. They have determined Swaziland, they have determined Lesotho, they have determined Bophuthatswana, we just continued it. The same type of institution, the Transkei, Ciskei, Venda and so on. But it's wrong because we do it. We are only a tiny little nation in the world. Afrikaner, the white man here, we are only about five million and the Afrikaner is a portion of that, and because we do it, it is wrong. So the white man in the Umlazi election primarily feared integration and the lifting of barriers between black and white. That is primary and you can draw the line right through every avenue of life.

POM     So your vote came from across every economic level?

FH     Yes, we had from the working class right up to, I wouldn't say large businessmen but ...

POM     You talk about the things that are the fears of white people, how would you compare and contrast white values with black values? What do you think are the values by which they live, the values that govern their ordinary lives?

FH     Let me put it to you this way, I respect their values for themselves. Just as much as I respect our values for ourselves. Now I think that I must revert back to culture. They've got a totally different culture from us. Let me give you an example. With a white man you would let the lady enter first, just a point of etiquette, she would enter first. If you go down steps you would walk first and she would have picked another passage or the other way around. You would walk, just etiquette, you would walk on the outside of the pavement. You would stand up when the lady comes in, you would take, I don't know, I think you Americans don't do it, we do it, we take the tray from the lady. Right. Now with them in their rural areas, the women is never to look in the man's face. She never sees her husband's face, unless she steals a little. She is not to walk out of the hut forward, if he sits there and she's staring him and she's got to reverse out, like this. You see it is a different style of life. How do you marry the two? How do you assimilate that? It is a completely different set up all together and I don't exactly know how to explain it to you. I don't say, and we don't say, in the Conservative Party particularly, we don't say for one moment that they have a lesser civilisation than we have, they have a different one. But one that doesn't appeal to me.

POM     Let me see what is meant by values. If I said, for example, you have a value of hard work associated with Afrikaners?

FH     We whites believe that the blacks are not productive.

POM     Not productive, ultimately which policy differences, which ones do you think apply to white people in general and which ones to black people in general?

FH     I don't want to say this when we embark upon this, that when I say that whites are productive, obviously, even among my own people the Afrikaner, you get some people that I wouldn't associate with.

POM     Sure, just taking general ...

FH     Compare the nations, nation to nation? All right. So we say they're not productive.

POM     Yes, would you take policies like that, that you associate with the white community in general, and tell me whether or not they apply to the black community as well?

FH     Would you like to mention names?

POM     Well we've got hard working, say thriftiness.

FH     Yes, we do have investments, short term, medium term, we survive.

POM     And blacks?

FH     No.

POM     Don't?

FH     They live from day to day. I just had occasion to speak to Prince Shinge, first cousin to Chief Minister Gatsha Buthelezi, who sent him to us in order to make contact with Andries Treurnicht, our leader, so that the two leaders can talk and - what was your question?

POM     Different policies; I said thriftiness

FH     Yes, thriftiness, and he said to me, you know it's only since the white man came to Africa that there is poverty among the blacks because the word poverty never came into their vocabulary. They didn't know what it meant. But since they compare their existence with ours they know about poverty. Now, it's strange that he said that, but that is so because they had a clannish type of existence. I think the Red Indians are very much the same. The whole family living together and there is always one that brings in probably corn, as you call it, we call it maize, always somebody that will bring in a goat or something to kill and they all have exactly the same. It is not one that gets more than the other. If you watch them eat in their tribal method they will sit around the pot of porridge or a plate and the one will eat and wait for the next one and wait for the next one and wait until they have gone around the circle, and this one will take the next one. So there is no comparative poverty or wealth among them as far as existence is concerned. You have today, of course, many of them have become westernised to an extent. They possess motor cars and they possess homes now under the government's new policy of the 99 year lease, and having made available over and above all the billions that have been spent, another three billion which I saw in this morning's paper.

POM     Say individualistic?

FH     I think the white man is more of an individualist and the black man is more of a socialist, a socialistic, is that the word for collective - ?

POM     Yes, what about planning for the future, goal oriented?

FH     The white man, of course, is always planning, he is ahead. I think modern science has conditioned us to the extent where we plan far ahead, even plan for the year, you often see statistics in the year 2010 and the year 2014 the population will be so, will be increased to this extent and we've got to plan for that, you know that statistics are a great thing to make your deductions and so forth and for commissions of inquiry or committee study groups it's non-stop with a view of planning for the future. No, they don't do that. I think their whole outlook in life is for the immediate. But they are great believers in the spirit of the fathers that have gone before. But as far as modern economy is concerned, or as far as economy is concerned, my observation is that they live for the immediate now. You go into the rural area which you have no doubt done and you will see around their huts they have a goat or two and a few fowls and they are happy. A man has his wives, he will sit, when he's not working for the white man, he will sit there next to his hut, they pour the water, they bring the firewood, they make the beer, there must be beer always, they make the porridge, they do everything around there. They provide for everything.

POM     Enterprising?

FH     Well the same again. At the moment it's a bit of a mixed bunch because, one thing for instance, that has cropped up in the last few years is this transport system of theirs, the taxis, which is almost disastrous. The first six months of this year there have been over 40,000 accidents in South Africa just on black taxis alone, that's these kombi type, you know the Volkswagen, Toyota type of minibus.

POM     Competitive?

FH     With?

POM     White people are raised to be competitive with other people to compete against them for jobs.

FH     Yes, it is so. The black man also seeks a job. I wouldn't say that he doesn't compete for a job. In the last three or four years as you know we also have trade unions for the blacks and that is a powerful tool in their hands. It is something that we in the Conservative Party are not very happy about because they use it for political ends. I don't doubt for one moment if I had been a black that I wouldn't have used this. I will give you an analogy. I stayed in a certain town where I was mayor many years ago and a certain gentleman said to me, one of my neighbours said to me, "Why don't you live in because it seems that you can afford it." I said, "No, I live here because I am smart." I said if I lived there and the children look over the fence and see the neighbour's tennis court, swimming pool, Olympic size, Mercedes Benz 450SLE and a Jaguar J6, and you know they've got, got, got, and we can't afford that. But here where I live now, people can look over the fence at my children's convenience, you know.

     All right, so we are competitive in many ways. I'm not one of those who likes to keep up with the Joneses but we are always improving ourselves. They seem to me, they come and work for the white man, get a bit of money, they go home and nothing changes, in fact things deteriorate. It's erosion. I'll give you an example. My brother-in-law is a medical surgeon, a specialist. When he started out he went to a missionary hospital in eastern Transvaal. It was beautiful, very much like the game reserve, have you been to the national park? Now that was a part of vegetation and perhaps even a bit more luscious, larger trees and so on. Now that section of land there was allocated to the blacks; taken from the whites, allocated, not taken, expropriated, they were paid up or something, now that was given to the blacks. Going back to 1960 my wife and I had an occasion about four years ago to travel that part of the land and it was dead, it was completely dead, no trees; sand, boulders, nothing goes on, there's a river which is the boundary between the whites and them, same river providing both sides, cross the river as you approach it, it was green, it was paradise, there was irrigation. The white man brought irrigation equipment and their land are beautiful. Up to that there's desert. You can go and see today, it's even worse. Now this is the experience.

POM     Again, do you think voters were voting for you more because, more as a vote against the government than for the Conservative Party? What I mean by that is, do you really believe most whites are prepared to sell their homes, pack up their bags and move en masse on another trek into one specific area of South Africa to be carved out as a homeland?

FH     Yes and no. Among the white people, obviously in a democratic society you have for and against, our perception is that they are against the government, far greater than for the government. The government won the last general election, that's true, with a majority, they had parliamentary representation of course that was much larger than percentage votes they take, but that is how the cookie crumbles, you can have ten constituencies that one by one vote and ...

POM     ?

FH     Yes, that's right. But you've heard our accusation of no mandate and so on which is fact, it is written, they have come with their request to the voters and they have just done exactly the opposite. No people won't just pack up and go. It's our country, there is nowhere where the Afrikaners can go, we've got no historical homeland but this. I'm a white African. I am a white African. My forbears have been here for 350 years.

POM     So when you talk about partition what do you mean?

FH     We mean that we want that part of the land that the blacks did not occupy. There was legally the Orange Free State, which is a legally, internationally recognised republic. There was the Transvaal that was a legally, internationally recognised republic. And so there were various white republics in South Africa. But after the Anglo-Boer War England forced us into a union. It wasn't a voluntary acceptance. We were forced into it, they were the conquerors. We were the smallest nation in the world. How to stand up to Britain, the mightiest in the world at that time, virtually. We were forced into it. But we still laid claim to those areas. We realise however, that if we want to keep everything, we lose everything. That we realise. As you are probably well aware there are ten black nations, not race, nations, there is the Coloured which is the mixed race, and there's the Indian, people of Indian stock, and then there's the white, gives us 13 main groupings in South Africa. Now under the old apartheid, grand apartheid system, the homelands were going to be allocated to each one of those 12 black nations and then what was left would be the white nation. We say 'left'. Why must we be thirteenth in the queue? If we take over power we want to be at the ballot box, then, we will be first in the queue.

     Now there are four options for South Africa. The one is as FW de Klerk goes at the moment, to carry on. There is no plan, there's nothing. We don't know, we suspect what he is going to do. But, that is the one. The other one is one man one vote in a unitary state, that we've discussed just now. The other option is that we have a white homeland cut out and then we let the others have what they like. Or we have a white homeland and give the rest to them all and say all right, you want mixing, it's up to you. You do with the rest of the country what you like, the twelve races. And let me tell you, the first one that will run will be the Indian. He's one of the stirrers at the moment but he's the one that is going to run. We seen here how the very wealthy Indian goes to the beach at PG Point(?) and then the blacks would bring in when they open the beaches, you've heard of the beach fiasco, and bring in the blacks and then the taxis would first stop at some of these Indian cars, they would be given something and told where to go and dump the blacks.

     POM      They were given?

FH     By the Indians, the black drivers were given instructions by the Indians. And we have shown they were because you could see them hand them something, and then they would point out where they would go and drop the blacks, just to take over the beach. And I can assure you that my wife and I last Christmas season, I can't remember if it was Christmas Day or New Year's Day we brought our little grandson down and there was nowhere on the beach, it was just black. So I said to her, "Now let's take a ride on that cable, these cable cars here", we went up there and there were six, I think there were six circular pools there which were for children. They were full of blacks. There was sex openly in the pools. They, excuse me saying so, they relieved themselves in the water. Urine, excuse me, with permission. We've actually seen it. They were in that water like sardines. And let me just go back two years when they started opening these facilities. They've got the most beautiful facilities, modern facilities just down the road, I can go and show you in my car. But they wanted to prove a point by wanting to be where the white man was.

     Now, the liberals in South Africa shouted open up, open up. The newspaper here, if we have to go according to them, they represent the liberals and they are apparently representing the majority in Durban because Durban is more liberal than, for instance, the Transvaal. There was a pool enclosed 100 meters up for whites only and these were opened up to everyone. Took my grandson the first morning that one was (open) and there were about, you know people were moving but I tried to estimate, there were about 200 people, whites. And I say to my wife, why don't you come over here by the Aquarium and see what it looks like there. And you know it was stacked with blacks, only two whites. Only two whites. Now I am asking myself, where were those liberals? They were at our pool. They opened it but they didn't come and circulate and enjoy with them because they were crowded out. They came and used our pool. You know that this new municipality, when they opened the beaches they even laid on three buses to bring the blacks from the stations to the beaches. Who paid for those buses? I don't know. Maybe tax-payers, I don't know.

POM     Would you see the white homeland being, then, well where is it, what part of Africa?

FH     Well there are about eight different propositions at the moment. They are not giving us one at the moment because we haven't got the power yet, but I can foresee that we'll have Richards Bay.

POM     Can you run through what the options are?

FH     I'll give the options that I personally have. I and a few of my friends are working on an option. I can't give you all the others but I'll give you what I think, which is a feasible one. There's a line through Swaziland in exchange for what is now known as Maputoland which is north bordering Maputo or Mozambique which will include Richards Bay to give us a seaboard. A line that will run through, a wide corridor, through the northern part of KwaZulu, we'll give them all this. As far as I'm concerned we can give them all of this. Right down to Cape Town, along the seaboard. Then we take what is traditionally a Boer Republic Trek which is that corridor, a line north of Pretoria, cut out all the Northern Transvaal, give it to them, places they never occupied before, exchange it and the northern Cape Province from the whole plateau. I don't know if you have a picture of South Africa. You've got the Drakensburg and the mountains down to Cape Town, that part to the Orange River level. There is no harbour there but we can construct a harbour. That's no problem.

POM     Which major cities would fall within it?

FH     Well harbours, they would then have Durban.

POM     The white state would have which?

FH     We'll have Richards Bay, we'll have a seaboard on the western side.

POM     Then cities?

FH     They can have from Cape Town everything on the eastern and southern borders right up within the mountains. I mean that's where they concentrate. It's this side of the mountains. People always say yes, we wanted to give them 13% of the land and we take the majority and we take the other 87%. But the 87% that people thought that we wanted is all arid or semi-arid. This is the most fertile and most irrigated part of the country. All inside the mountains on the eastern and southern seaboard. They give them all that. Give them the Northern Transvaal. Exchange land for Bophuthatswana. Give us from Pretoria south to the on the mountain range. And to the western side of the Drakensburg, they can have the rest. You know everything sounds very simplistic. But our problem is a unique one.

POM     What I'm saying, I don't think people are going to pack up their bags.

FH     No there are people who will. Many thousands, hundreds of thousands will, some of them will stay here, that's their choice. We are not going to force any white out. But where we are going to live must be white.

POM     But how would you get rid of the black people who are living in part of the areas that would be white? Would they be compensated?

FH     Of course, they've always been compensated. We've compensated them.

POM     Who would compensate them now if they had to leave the white homeland, who would compensate them?

FH     We'd compensate them. We have always compensated them. We have never taken anything from any black without handsomely compensating them. Never, never ever.

POM     What do you think is going to happen here in the next year?

FH     That is a very, very good question but we are not going to settle for a referendum which is what they want. We are going to go for an election. If he doesn't give us an election there is going to be serious trouble.

POM     When you say serious trouble?

FH     Serious trouble. Don't ask me to spell it out. But we have our strategies, we've worked out our strategies which are all legal which are all non-violent and I can't see that we're not going to have it. The present constitution is for an election. The present constitution provides for an election.

POM     In 1994.

FH     We don't mind 1994 but we think it will be before that. They're saying they are very determined they won't give us, they don't have to have, an election before then, that's fine. Many times before it was also said and we had elections, snap elections. So this time it is a serious matter. This time it is the survival of the white man in South Africa.

POM     When I come back to talk to you this time next year what can I expect to have happened?

FH     I can't give you a timetable because I am only one of the lesser whites in the parliament.

POM     But the government and the ANC are going to go on talking?

FH     Well they are talking, yes. And Mandela is almost regarded by De Klerk as deputy prime minister or deputy president.

POM     In observing Mandela in the six months that he's been out, since February, what does he convey to you?

FH     Well I think in the first place he talks a lot. And he sometimes talks very contradictory in his own terms. I think that he's got to make certain brave noises for his followers. I think that he's got FW de Klerk in the corner. FW de Klerk doesn't know how to get out of it and still retain world favour. Because for the moment FW de Klerk is playing for the world gallery. He said no man likes to do the things that he's doing. Mandela, and through his lieutenant, Hani, carry on with their armed struggle and violence and Hani now even said that they'll have to take over. You've heard. Now that is treason. But nothing is done. But one man who stole a few bullets from the air force has a R50,000 reward on his head.

     I would like to repeat what a liberal said in the church the other day. "I have understanding for the right and radical, I'm not a radical, I have an understanding for their struggle because they are reacting to government actions." That's a reaction. If this government would only promise us, if De Klerk would today, today promise us an election.

This resource is hosted by the Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory, but was compiled and authored by Padraig O’Malley. Return to the Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory site.