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 It is the product of almost two decades of research and includes analyses, chronologies, historical documents, and interviews from the apartheid and post-apartheid eras.

27 Jul 1993: Kriel, Hernus

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POM     Last December The Star said: - "The government is discredited and divided, the military may mutiny, Buthelezi wants secession and APLA threatens a race war. De Klerk fiddles while South Africa burns." I want to look at that statement in the context of numerous reports in the newspapers that I have gone through in the last year about divisions within the National Party itself and about divisions within the Cabinet which are often characterised by calling some people hawks and some people doves. Now we talked yesterday with Tertius Delport and he identified himself as being a hawk and you were also in news accounts identified as being a hawk. Could you explain to me what the difference is between who would be described as a hawk within the government and who would be described as a dove?

HK     Well if Dr Delport describes himself as a hawk I don't exactly know what it means because within line functions there are certain jobs that you have to do. When I talk about security, when I talk about the role of the police, when I talk about crime, obviously this is another dimension, it's another world than the one at the World Trade Centre. So sometimes I have to make strong statements for obvious reasons because that line function - and then one is sometimes by the media categorised as being a hawk. I don't think that that is correct because my whole life approach has been one of balance. It's my life philosophy. I'm not against the negotiating process. As a matter of fact I'm a supporter of the negotiating process, I take part in the planning thereof. I am a member of what we call the BGH which is a group within the Cabinet assisted by senior officials who meet on a regular basis to plan the negotiating process, have feedback on what is happening there, prepare policy decisions that must be taken by Cabinet. So I am very much involved also in the negotiating process although I don't sit regularly at the table. So to describe me, if the connotation of being a hawk is that you're against negotiations, that is not correct.

POM     It's not against negotiations. I suppose the connotation that I've heard it used in is that those who believe that some of the negotiators are taking too soft a line with the ANC and those who believe that a tougher line should be taken with them.

HK     I'm a democrat in this respect. I put my views within this committee that I've told you, I've put my views in Cabinet, but if the decision is for, I fall in line with those decisions. So if a hawk means that I'm planning also, because that's also been in the newspaper, that I'm planning a breakaway from the party, that I'm the leader of a disgruntled lot of people within the National Party, members of parliament, that is simply not true. The newspapers also say that I'm conniving with the rightist groups. I can't remember when last I had somebody in my office from the rightist group. The last time I had somebody was in Cape Town during the session of parliament when Dr Hartzenberg came to me to try and arrange some security measures for General Constand Viljoen and that was the conversation. But I am not in contact with the rightist groups. As a matter of fact I don't believe that what they are proposing is practical politics.

POM     Why do you think the media has singled you out in this way? Again I've read accounts over the last twelve months which have persistently said that you must go as Minister of Law & Order.

HK     I think that one must also read in this a lot of politics. The one thing that stands between a total takeover of power by the ANC, even at this stage, are the security forces and the police and I've taken a tough line on this one that we will not hand over the police and the security forces especially when it comes to control and command on an operational basis to any other organisation. That point I have stressed over time. I also did not hesitate to attack the ANC because after all they are a political organisation and they are not the only people in this country.

POM     Sorry, you attacked them for what?

HK     On various special security issues. I've come out strongly against the criminal activities of members of MK. I've attacked them on that. I've attacked them for their involvement in violence. So perhaps the bearer of truth is not always that well received and the result is that people will call for your resignation.

POM     The Financial Mail during the year said that for the purposes of credibility that the next Minister for Law & Order in an interim government or whatever should be a non-Nationalist. Do you think that gesture should be made?

HK     In an interim government in a government of national unity, and this is being negotiated, there will be power sharing on Cabinet level. That will also depend I think to a large extent on the percentage of what different parties get in an election. The talk at the moment is that a Cabinet will then be negotiated between the various parties so it's not a question of my relinquishing my post. My term of office will come to an end when the next Cabinet is appointed through negotiations on a basis of power sharing. Now at this stage to say that the next Minister of Law & Order should not be a Nationalist I don't think that is correct. It could well be that it would be in the interest of a new government of national unity that it should be a Nationalist.

POM     Why would you think that?

HK     I say it could be, it could be.

POM     What case would you make for that?

HK     I'm not saying that I'm making a case for it but it all depends because there are certain key posts in a Cabinet. You know it as well as I do. As I see it the key posts are Finance, Foreign Affairs, Law & Order, Defence and Justice. I think those are the five major posts apart from the President and that sort of thing in a Cabinet. And again, when you negotiate a Cabinet, for a national unity Cabinet, then that will also have to be taken into account so it may well be that the Cabinet decides or when the leaders decide, alright let's put a Nationalist at Law & Order and a non-Nationalist at Justice or Defence. So it's a question of negotiations and where the people who are available can be best utilised.

POM     One thing, just deviating not too far, that struck me forcibly in the last month was that Mr de Klerk made a statement in the middle of May to the effect that what the National Party was looking for, and would not settle for less than, was entrenched power sharing in the constitution and a couple of weeks later the whole concept of power sharing was simply dropped by the party. Can you explain the logic behind that? Since I've been coming here for four years every Nationalist minister I've talked to ...

HK     We have not dropped the concept of power sharing. We are adamant that power sharing, and this was accepted by the ANC, will be in an interim constitution at Cabinet level. The details of how that should operate are now in the process of being negotiated and will be negotiated at the negotiating forum. When it comes to power sharing in a final constitution it is not one of the principles that a constitution making body would be bound by when they write the final constitution but that does not mean that we have abandoned that concept. We believe that in this interim five year period where you try, really try, and build confidence I believe that it will be proved that a plain single majority Cabinet is not in the interests of the country and therefore we will go on at the negotiating or the constitution making body for the foreseeable future in a final constitution also to promote the idea of power sharing in the final constitution on Cabinet level. So we have not abandoned that at all.

POM     One other thing that has struck me rather forcibly was that last year at CODESA 2 you really had two parties, the government and its allies and the ANC and its allies and they were in opposition to each other, adversaries as such. It now seems as though the ANC and the government are dancing in tune with each other against a third power.

HK     That is a perception but again I want to stress the word 'perception'. We are far closer philosophically, the government and the National Party, to the IFP than we are to the ANC. So our main political 'enemy', if I can put it in that word, opponent - let me rather use the word 'opponent' - our main political opponent still remains the ANC but the realities of the negotiating process are that we have all the same aim and that is to get a transitional constitution in place as soon as possible whereas the COSAG group are not really interested, I believe, in that and that brought us to a point where there is, and it's no use that we are trying to deny it, that there has been a cooling down of the close co-operation between the government and the IFP, but I don't think that necessarily means that there has been a jumping into bed with the ANC.

POM     Are you perhaps crawling into bed with them?

HK     No we don't even crawl into bed with them. There's too much philosophical differences between us.

POM     So you would have trouble envisaging a future government which really was a coalition between the ANC and the National Party.

HK     I'm not saying that that is not going to happen but then it will be political opponents that will go into coalition and not allies because in terms of the structuring of the constitution the if National Party doesn't make it, for instance let's say that IFP gets more votes, then the coalition will have to be the major player who will be the IFP and the ANC.

POM     Recent polls show that the National Party would only retain 25% of the voters who voted it into power in 1989 if an election were held today and, again, there are constant references to the diminution in white support for the National Party. Is this acknowledged by the party and what is it doing to stop the haemorrhaging?

HK     Yes. Can I just take you a little bit back and that is, the National Party went on to lose election after election before the last referendum. We were also written off. It was also said that we would only have 25% of the votes. It turned out after an election campaign, and that is one thing we know how to fight and that is an election campaign, this party. We got just about two thirds of the support of the white people in this country. So don't write us off.

POM     I'm not doing that. I'm saying are steps being taken to ...

HK     I'm saying to you, people should not write us off. We're planning and we're far advanced with that, with our election campaign, slowly but surely we're putting it into operation. We also believe that an election campaign can be started too soon. We've also got experience on that. Your timing must be right. These are factors that we have some experience in and that we will be using in the coming election. The second point is we will have to market a constitution to allay the fears of a lot of people in this country. We cannot allay those fears until such time as we have a constitution in place, a transitional or national unity, interim constitution. So when it comes to marketing let me blunt about it. We are waiting for the product that we must market and we believe that once we have that product, that is why we are so anxious that we finalise the new constitution so that we can start selling it.

POM     About a year ago when I talked to people most of them wrote off the right wing, more or less saying it's day had come and gone and they only saw it as a minor threat that might disrupt but couldn't spoil the process. Do you think that the threat of the right is a real threat today and must be taken seriously?

HK     Yes. It will be unwise to do that, to ignore it as it will be unwise to ignore the IFP.

POM     Coming again to the IFP do you think that one could reach even an interim constitution if the IFP and the CP, but particularly the IFP, Buthelezi, stays out of the process and will have nothing to do with it?

HK     Let me first put it to you this way, I think it is important that they both come in but ground facts will then have to tell us, the facts at that time of the security situation, whether a two-party or a government/ANC accepted constitution rejected by the right wing and the IFP, whether we can go ahead with that.

POM     It would be difficult to?

HK     I think it will be difficult to implement, yes.

POM     Is there any possibility then that if the IFP in particular and the CP, if they both stay out of the process that it would be meaningful to go ahead with the elections on 27th April or that the elections should be postponed until a later date?

HK     Again I am saying to you that will depend on the security situation. What are they going to do about it? Are they going to start a civil war, either the IFP or the far right? Those are factors that we will have to evaluate when the time comes.

POM     But in those circumstances there could be a possibility of a postponement of elections, if the security situation warranted it?

HK     I believe so, yes, because there is no point in writing a constitution which just creates a civil war. That we will have to avoid at all costs.

POM     When you look at where the government was in June of last year when CODESA 2 collapsed and where the government is today, is there any significant difference in what its position was then and what its positions are now? Has it in the last year made any concessions to move the process forward?

HK     Yes we've made concessions, undoubtedly.

POM     What would you point to?

HK     For instance the one on power sharing, that we are not demanding that this becomes a constitutional principle. I think that was a major shift by the party in that respect. The fact that I think we also made minor concessions on regional government although the major concessions, as I see it, on regional government were made by the ANC.

POM     What would you point to there in terms of what the ANC did in terms of making a concession on regional government. You say the ANC made concessions with regard to regional government, what concessions did they make?

HK     What concessions did they make? Well we will just have to look at the constitutional principles to see that they acknowledged regional government with own exclusive powers which they never did in the past. They also always wanted to have a weak regional government or a federal government with very strong central powers and this is, I believe, a major concession that they have made to acknowledge the fact that the majority of the people around the table really want it, even amongst their own ranks because there's quite a number of the self governing territories that support the ANC but they are regionalists and I think that also added some pressure within their own ranks that they make concessions on this.

POM     Would you look at the constitutional draft that has come out and see it, I won't say in a favourable light, but see it as a good working document rather than a bad working document? Would you say that it has met a lot of what the government wants?

HK     To me it is a working document. It was drawn up by technicians. Now we have to look at the political implications of their wording, the legal implications thereof. I do not believe that in that document, especially when it comes to regional powers, that it is strong enough. That is also the new point of the government. There are too many loopholes in it and it does not meet our requirement for strong regional government.

POM     Does it meet it in terms of power sharing?

HK     Not necessarily. It comes down to the powers of the central government over regional government. That's the one philosophical departure point. The other one is the division of the functions which I believe can be more extensive, more power to the regions and power sharing obviously will have to come in on a regional basis in the Executives of the regions.

POM     Over the years the SAP has come in for a lot of criticism whether it be in terms of political bias or what Judge Goldstone called 'obstructural arrogance', the Waddington Report. What steps have been taken? First of all do you recognise that the police have a credibility problem in black areas?

HK     In certain black areas. In other black areas, no. In Coloured areas, in some, in the majority not. In the Indian areas, total credibility. Amongst the white people, total credibility except that they are very worried about the rise in crime. So in certain areas in our country we have that problem. I have initiated a restructuring of the South African Police. Did we talk about it last time or not?

POM     I don't think so.

HK     But the one major thing that we did is that I brought into being a new division within the police, a new leg which we call the Community Relations and I have appointed some excellent people there with the sole purpose of promoting community policing, the concept of community policing. They started about five/six months ago. The reports that are coming back (you won't change that overnight) but they set up forums where they get the people in, they have regular meetings where the people can say to them what their problems are and they can say to the people what their problems are and where this is happening and where we have the support of the ANC it's working.

POM     So this is a joint effort.

HK     But you do find areas where the ANC does not want to work within this area.

POM     Do you still see the ANC as being composed of, I hate to use the words hawks and doves, but the militants and the moderates?

HK     Oh yes they also have their hawks and doves. They also have their hawks and doves. There's no doubt about that.

POM     Three events I suppose I should ask you to comment on and that is first of all the march on Bisho last October which culminated in the death of a number of people. How is that interpreted? What were the political consequences?

HK     The political consequences are that the ANC did a lot of harm within the country amongst their own support base. It was not well received.

POM     Why did it create a lot of harm?

HK     Because it led to the death of quite a lot of people and people know that the ANC instigated that so that wasn't a plus point for them.

POM     Some say that it was a kind of a run-in manoeuvre by the SACP to topple Gqozo and then to march on Buthelezi and then Mangope and to bring down the homelands through a series of mass actions, the final mass action being the bringing down of De Klerk through mass action.

HK     I think there's a lot of truth in that, yes.

POM     You do?

HK     Yes because if they were going to try and take Bisho that day there is no doubt in my mind.

POM     If they had, I know it's speculation but let us assume that they had taken Bisho that day?

HK     Oh there would have been a civil war in Bisho and the lives lost in the march would have disappeared as being insignificant in terms of what would have happened.

POM     Do you think Brigadier Oupa Gqozo has a base of real support in Ciskei?

HK     That again is very difficult to assess but I don't think it is very significant if I read the signs correctly.

POM     The second event was the assassination of Chris Hani. How would you assess the political fall-out of that?

HK     It brought Mandela under close scrutiny and I believe that he handled it very, very well. He handled it extremely well. Also from a political point of view because Hani was popular and it's sad to say but the death of Hani was to the advantage, in support, amongst the people for the ANC and SACP.

POM     You think it increased support?

HK     It increased its support I believe.

POM     I'm getting something wrong.

HK     What I am saying is this, that Hani's death led to a greater support for the ANC and the SACP.

POM     Is there a downside to that? Some people have mentioned that Hani was one of the few people who could keep the radical youth in line, so to speak.

HK     Well you know it's very difficult to be clever and just speculate on what could have happened. Hani was never known as a man with moderate viewpoints, never. Just shortly before his death he made a few remarks that people latched on to and said that Hani was the man for peace. But if you look at the total period since February 1990 and the role that Hani played it wasn't a moderate role that Hani played. He wasn't amongst the moderates within the ANC/SACP alliance. To say that he could keep the youth under control? I don't think so. I don't think anybody can at this stage keep the youth under control.

POM     What are the political consequences of that?

HK     Not so much political consequences but security consequences.

POM     Security consequences. What are the security consequences?

HK     Well they are running rampant, they are involved in crime. They are not adding to an atmosphere of calmness and peace in the country.

POM     Do you find the ANC sympathetic to your analysis on this?

HK     I haven't discussed my analysis with them, no.

POM     Because it would seem to be that if that kind of violence continues after a new government is in place that the foreign investment the country so desperately needs is not going to materialise.

HK     Yes I'm afraid you're right because an election will not be the end of violence in South Africa.

POM     So will the first priority be on stability?

HK     Well obviously a government of national unity must make it one of its prime responsibilities because then the excuse for non-participation in government has disappeared.

POM     Do you think that the ANC is in control of its own defence units in the townships?

HK     No, definitely not. They are totally out of control. Self-defence units, they are unfortunately out of control and what is more they are starting to defy the authority of the ANC.

POM     I want to talk about the APLA killings for a while.

HK     How long do you need from me?

POM     Oh, until say 12 o'clock.

HK     OK.

POM     Thank you. One hour a year.

HK     Yes.

POM     First of all, do you think that the PAC is in control of APLA?

?

HK     APLA is controlling the PAC. No doubt.

POM     That's much like in Northern Ireland. The IRA is the overriding body, not Sinn Fein. Although Sinn Fein is the political wing of the IRA they can't make IRA policy. So for you APLA is in control?

HK     Oh yes I've got no doubt about that whatsoever. They are totally ineffective. What was also very significant around the negotiating table was that in terms of the PAC political spectrum moderates in there, like Gora Ebrahim, Barney Desai, Willie Serote, Dikgang Moseneke, Dikgang resigned from the PAC. The others have all been pushed out from the negotiating process. We've got some funny people sitting around the negotiating table at this stage.

POM     Who is sitting around the table now?

HK     I think it's a lady, I don't know her name.

POM     Patricia de Lille?

HK     De Lille I think it is, but those are the hardliners of the PAC who are sitting there now. Even I believe Benny Alexander has been pushed out.

POM     So would you see then the APLA campaign as something that was intended to oust the moderates from the PAC itself and to make the PAC more hard-line?

HK     I think the thinking of the PAC is this, and I must explain myself very carefully. There was a shift within the ANC more to the middle of the political spectrum. I'm not saying that they are in the middle but they have moved a little bit towards the middle of the political spectrum which left a vacuum for extremists amongst blacks which left them without a political and a philosophical home. There are amongst them people who believe that they still can win through the armed struggle whereas it was accepted by the ANC that the road is through negotiations and the radicals found a home within the radical viewpoints of the PAC/APLA situation and they know that and they are trying to fill that vacuum because they had very little support in the past. They were really insignificant and all of a sudden through this they have increased their support base so they are filling that political vacuum especially amongst radical blacks.

POM     In fact I think one poll I looked at the other day had the PAC now as the second largest party in the country, that support for the ANC was down.

HK     I mean, really. We have so many in this country. That's the newest industry. Everybody that can't find a job opens up a poll.

POM     Do you think the people who would support APLA, or their increase in support is tied to the fact that they are killing whites, that they have targeted white people?

HK     Yes, unfortunately it's true.

POM     So in that sense there are still the seeds of a race war?

HK     No I think it's the seeds of racism that we still find in our country, but then I do not believe that we are alone in the world on that one. Perhaps other countries just handle it a little bit better than we do.

POM     Now the other thing I would like to talk to you about is the arrest ...

HK     Just before we step or go away from that. Talking about racism, I believe that also amongst white people racism is getting stronger which is very alarming. Very alarming.

POM     Why do you think that is so?

HK     I attribute it directly to the actions of APLA, of MK and of the ANC. You don't make friends if you say you're going to take away people's property. You don't make friends by saying you are going to introduce a wealth tax on all white people. Then you must accept that racism will find a very good climate in which to flourish and that is unfortunately so.

POM     So in a sense again one could have an interim government taking over a country in which the polarisation between the populations, particularly black and white, are greater than they were three or four years ago?

HK     Yes. Yes. No doubt. That brings us back to the point, what is the position going to be before an election on a security level in the country?

POM     The arrest of the 73 APLA or PAC members was big headlines everywhere, in the New York Times, the Boston Globe, Philadelphia Enquirer, big headlines here, then you being summoned to the Negotiating Council to account for your actions.

HK     That's not correct. I was never summonsed to the Negotiating Council.

POM     Let me tell you what I've read or heard and then you comment on it and tell me. It was like a summonsing where you were, it said a red-faced Mr Kriel was grilled by Cyril Ramaphosa and told South Africa was changing and the release of most of the 73 without any charges was being laid before them. The two theories that I've heard are, (i) it was an attempt on the government's part to have the PAC pull out of the talks or (ii) it was an attempt to strengthen the PAC at the expense of the ANC just as the Conservative Party was running stronger than the National Party. The government wanted to pull down the ANC to its level somewhat.

HK     No I don't think it was anything as sophisticated and devious as that. We just got fed up with the way that they were killing people and I have a duty to protect people in this country and we needed information and we had certain evidence available to us and it led to quite a lot of evidence and information where we could act preventatively to stop the loss of more lives. So in retrospect it was worth it for the simple reason that we could stop the killing, in certain instances, of people. I don't know whether you know of the incident that took place here in Johannesburg and as a direct result of the arrests we made we got information from PAC members of underground PAC members who were going to blow up a restaurant. They were going to go there on an afternoon and throw hand grenades in one of the white suburbs here at 5.30, which is the time that all the yuppies of Hillbrow go to the pubs and we stopped them. When they moved on to the scene we were there and caught them and arrested them and confiscated their hand grenades and machine guns and things like that. And we wouldn't have been aware of this if it wasn't for those arrests. We caught quite a number of people that we're charging for murder. Numerous people are being charged with the possession of illegal firearms so it was worth it.

POM     Of the 73 how many have been charged with something?

HK     I haven't got the figure available. I can let you have it.

POM     OK. Was the decision yours? Did you make the decision acting on information supplied by your own intelligence sources within the police?

HK     I have a viewpoint that I never tell the police who they must arrest and who they mustn't arrest because if I land in something like that then the integrity of the force and my own integrity goes for a loop. And therefore I never tell the police who they should arrest. What I did tell the police at one of our meetings was that we will have to do something to stop the APLA killings and that we will have to get to the source of this thing and I think that sparked off an intensive investigation and the first I heard about that was when the Commissioner of Police said to me they have completed their report and they are now ready to make arrests, their investigations and are now ready to make arrests. I was in no position, and if I'm confronted with a similar situation I cannot say to the police, "Because of the negotiating process don't arrest murderers." I cannot do it. So they had to go ahead with it.

POM     Was Mr de Klerk informed by you?

HK     I informed him. I informed him that evening about what we were going to do. He was fully informed.

POM     And you had his backing?

HK     Yes, yes, no problem about that. No problem about that.

POM     In terms of the political fallout, what do you think the political fallout of the arrests was?

HK     That is difficult to assess because then you have to look at various political spheres and I do not believe, especially if you see the reaction after the time, that the ANC was in their hearts and in their inner circles against our action because they are also fed up with APLA.

POM     Do you see the hand of APLA in the killings in Cape Town at the church over the weekend?

HK     No I cannot comment on that. I haven't got facts to that. I haven't got facts. That was one thing. On the other hand especially amongst the Coloured, Indian and white communities, their political spectrums, it was very well received.

POM     What do you think are the obstacles that now stand in the way of there being a peaceful resolution to the conflict here?

HK     To the obstacles?

POM     Obstacles that lie in the way of a settlement to bring about peace and stability?

HK     Various factors. If we talk from the point of view of violence as a concept and you don't make a distinction between criminal violence and political violence because political violence is really a very small percentage of the real violence that's going on in this country. It's something like 12% or 13% of the total picture of violence in our country. But there are reasons for that. Let's just look at that, plain crime. I believe that the major contributor to that is the state or our economy, unemployment. So when it comes to that our economy will have to grow, we will have to create new jobs because if people are hungry they steal. There's no doubt about it. So in that respect that is one of the things that stands between us and resolving the problem of crime in our country. There are various other factors but I'm just mentioning the main ones because of the time restraint that we have.

POM     Do you think if the level of violence continues at its current level that it will be possible to have free and fair elections next April?

HK     That is something that worries me greatly. If we want to have legitimate elections then we will have to bring down especially the level of political violence. That means that the war between the ANC and the IFP will have to stop because that is the major cause of political violence in this country at this stage. There's no doubt about it. I didn't say so. You quoted Judge Goldstone. I'm also quoting Judge Goldstone. That is the major cause. There are other causes yes, mass demonstrations always gives rise to violence. If that thing can just disappear out of our country till after an election I think it will be a major contributor to bringing down violence.

POM     Do you think the violence between the IFP and the ANC has a dynamic of its own where the leadership is incapable of hauling their constituencies in? Mandela and De Klerk have made ...

HK     No, Mandela and Buthelezi. I think that they have lost control but at the same time I want to say that I don't think that they are doing enough to stop it.

POM     What could they be doing that they are not doing?

HK     Well they can go on a road show for instance instead of going overseas and go to the people in the small towns and say, "Here we are, we are political opponents but we don't kill each other. Stop the killing on the ground now." And if they can do that for a month in this country and get their regional leaders, people like Harry Gwala, also under control then we can make progress.

POM     Let me throw one last question at you. Really Harry Gwala is in a way central to it. The IFP has very strong demands with regard to federalism and what they want.

HK     So have we.

POM     The ANC may move towards making some kind of accommodation with them but given the state of relations between the ANC in the Midlands of Natal and the leadership here it would seem to me it would be quite a possibility that the leadership in Natal would say "This is a sell out".

HK     You're talking from the point of view of the ANC, the Gwala philosophy.

POM     Yes, they would say, "The ANC has gone too far".

HK     There is that possibility, yes.

POM     And it will intensify a war there rather than diminish it?

HK     Well that is the real test for leadership then isn't it? That is then the real test. Whether the ANC is strong enough and the leadership is strong enough to handle a person like Gwala. At this stage it doesn't look like it. We had to go through this period in our own party where we had to kick people out of our party. The ANC is not prepared to do that. Power at all costs. Any cost.

POM     Do you still think that their ultimate aim is majority rule, period?

HK     Oh yes, no doubt. No doubt.

PAT     How did the international people who come in here as sort of expert police advisers ... your efforts particularly in the community relations area ...?

HK     Yes I think that they have played a very significant role. They have acted as monitors and people tend to behave themselves in front of international monitors but I think they have also learnt a lot about policing in South Africa. I was in a position that one of the Britishers that's here, and he's from the Metropolitan Police in London, he said to me one day around a conference table, he said, "Mr Minister, I was very perturbed to see that the basic policing rules were not adhered to when somebody was murdered." I said "Such as?" He said "Well the cordoning off and the forensics and the ballistics and all sorts of people coming in. It just wasn't done, they didn't do it." I said "Tell me, Inspector, how many murders do you have in London in your area per year, that you handle?" He said "Well eight to ten." I said "We handle 15,000. Can you handle it with your force and adhere to the basics? Where must I get the trained people to adhere to it? I try and get policemen onto the streets after having trained them for ten weeks. They don't know how to do it so please don't compare apples with pears. You are not in London. You are now in Africa and this is what it looks like." And he said, "No, all right, point taken but we should work towards that." I said "Agreed".

PAT     Then would you see, there are some discussions that the UN or other international bodies might assist with the security operations for an election with what they call their Civilian Police Unit and what they did in Namibia which seems to have eventually have worked out, there was co-operation between SWAPO and those operations. Would you be going to entertain such an operation here, that the UN brings in a civil police unit operation to work with the SAP on an election?

HK     We are going in another direction at this stage and that is the establishment of a peace keeping force consisting of South Africans and we would rather try and go that way than getting a whole force of United Nations.

PAT     Bangladeshis, Nigerians.

HK     I've got my doubts as to whether they will come in any case. I think they've got enough problems at the moment. So we'll try and solve it here and see whether we cannot.

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.