The Presidential Years

Well, one of the problems that we have is that many people including journalists are content with what happens on the surface. I am tempted to feel sometimes that the capacity to research, to investigate is undeveloped amongst some of our opinion makers. I can just say without going into detail that it’s also a mistake to think that this transformation just took place without any hassle. We were faced with a situation of a civil war here where the right wing decided to stop the election by violence. We had to negotiate, to use people who were influential, who could stop that. I am not going to say any particular individual assisted us in that regard. But had to use people who were our mortal enemies in order to defuse that. And we have to think about that when problems arise. I have spoken to PW Botha twice on this question about the TRC. I’ve spoken to all his children; I have briefed the South African Defence Force, the South African Police Services, the Dutch Reformed Church and others because I know a little more than you do as to what is happening below the surface. And it’s a serious mistake to look at matters purely from the point of view of what you see and which everybody notices. There are issues which one has to consider which many people are unaware of. It is necessary to try and defuse this situation. But our determination to do so cannot go so far as to allow people to defy the law. I have done my bit and I can assure you that PW Botha is not above the law and I will never allow him to defy the TRC. And I have urged his family to help to prevent his humiliation. And if he continues along this line then the law must take its course. There is no question about that at all.

Original Source

SABC TV Archive, SABC Information Library, Johannesburg