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 It is the product of almost two decades of research and includes analyses, chronologies, historical documents, and interviews from the apartheid and post-apartheid eras.

L. The Treatment of the Mutineers

Although we considered the focus of this enquiry to be the group of 32, some evidence was led by those who were detained as a result of their alleged participation in the 1984 mutiny. It is not within the scope of this Commission to deal with the causes of the mutiny. There are a number of published accounts on the mutiny including a chapter in the recently published book by Stephen Ellis and Tsepo Sechaba entitled Comrades against Apartheid. The authors record that included in the demands of the mutineers was the suspension of the ANC security apparatus and an investigation of Quatro. The mutiny was the subject of an official enquiry by the ANC led by James Stuart. We were eventually furnished with a copy of the Stuart Commission report. The contents of that report were never made public and, it seems, not formally tabled before the ANC National Executive Committee. According to Ellis and Sechaba, although the findings of the Commission were never released, it was widely known that the investigators attributed blame for the mutiny on the excesses of the security department, poor political education, poor recreational facilities and quality of food and the yearning to go home and fight. These are indeed the findings of the Stuart

There was evidence that both soldiers and mutineers died in the exchange of fire. We were told that some of the mutineers were thereafter executed. The circumstances in which this occurred are far from clear. However, there is a sense of unease that these executions may have been carried out summarily. It appears that after the initial executions, strenuous efforts were made by among others,s' Mr Hani, to stop the executions.

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.