The Presidential Years

The election was 27 April. The week before that I had a meeting in Meyerton and the people were very difficult - they disagreed with me that we should go for a negotiated settlement at this stage and not for war. There was this agreement about participating in the elections and using the votes for a plebiscite to show substantial proven Afrikaner support for self-determination, that was in the first half of March but the ANC kept on postponing the signing of the document and at that meeting in Meyerton I said to my wife, ‘I’m going to let the dogs loose, I’m going to disrupt this election.’ I was in a position to do so, because I had 50,000 people and to disrupt an election with 50,000 people is not difficult.

But I had a very good relationship with Princeton Lyman who was then the ambassador of the United States. We had many discussions, he understood our position. He said to me one day, before you do something drastic won’t you please come and discuss it with me.

And I remembered this and I said to my wife, I will go and to see Lyman. I saw him the next day and put it to him, ‘I am going to let the dogs loose, the ANC is playing the fool with me.’ And he said, give me half an hour. I went back to the office and Lyman phoned me in the office, it was about a week before the election, and he said, it will be signed and it was signed, with two witnesses, Ambassador Lyman and Jurgen Kogl.

What is more this accord on Afrikaner self-determination was also signed by the National Party which was a great advance for me because the worst thing that could have happened to me would have been proof for the Afrikaans people that the majority of the National Party is against me on the principle of self-determination So then we had the election.

Constand Viljoen