The unfinished business of apartheid: Families in search of truth

Last week Thursday, Judge Billy Mothle ruled that anti-apartheid activist, Ahmed Timol did not commit suicide but was rather murdered by security branch police officers.

The Judge found that Timol died after being tortured and then pushed from a window. The inquest into the death of Timol was reopened in June 2017 after his family wanted the findings of the initial inquest reversed.

Host, Eusebius McKaiser invited Nomarussia Bonase, Judy Seidmen and the nephew of the late Ahmed Timol, Imtiaz Cajee, for a difficult but important conversation on the unfinished business of apartheid.

Cajee says the judgment meant a lot to the family. He explains that if they had accepted the initial findings of Timol's death, then like for many other families, the annals of history would always have reflected that his uncle and over seventy-two other political detainees had committed suicide, and that no one was held responsible for their deaths.

We had taken a stance as a family that we would challenge this ruling. As a family, as political activists, we had known that people like Uncle Timol and many others were brutally tortured. We never knew the true extent of what had transpired within those walls of those notorious police stations.

Imtiaz Cajee, nephew of the late Ahmed Timol

Cajee says he was only five-years-old at the time and had very little knowledge and faint memories of his late uncle. But he spent a lot of time with another uncle of his who when Cajee was twelve, went into exile. Cajee adds that he could see that his uncles and grandparents were broken individuals.

Cajee explains that he took it upon himself to find out what inspired Timol to leave the comforts of London and return to South Africa during what was a difficult time under apartheid and become a part of the underground mission.

After publishing his book, Cajee says many were under the illusion that the story he told was over.

Cajee tells McKaiser that they are now working with other families to get justice for loved ones who died in similar circumstances.

Victims and survivors of the Khulumani Support group... did not stop asking for the persuasion of justice, especially social, economic and political justice. To this day we say injustice has been done to the victims.

Nomarussia Bonase- National Coordinator at the Khulumani Support group

Bonase says the injustices that haven't been dealt with have created a wounded society, psychologically, physically and mentally wounded.

The Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC)was originally seen as the first step and even at the time it was clear there were many compromises, even when they put it in place.

Judy Seidmen - American-born graphic artist and poster maker for the ANC

Seidmen explains that Khulumani was established to provide support to people who told their traumatic stories at the TRC. She goes on to say when the TRC was discontinued, the door wasn't closed but closing the door in people's faces.

Nomarussia Bonase is the National Coordinator at the Khulumani Support group, Imtiaz Cajee is the nephew of the late Ahmed Timol and Judy Seidmen is an American-born graphic artist and poster maker for the ANC who has been participating in South Africa's struggles for social justice and national Liberation.

Listen to the full conversation in the clip below:


This article first appeared on 702 : The unfinished business of apartheid: Families in search of truth


Recommended

by NEWSROOM AI

CapeTalk welcomes all comments that are constructive, contribute to discussions in a meaningful manner and take stories forward.

However, we will NOT condone the following:

  • Racism (including offensive comments based on ethnicity and nationality)
  • Sexism
  • Homophobia
  • Religious intolerance
  • Cyber bullying
  • Hate speech
  • Derogatory language
  • Comments inciting violence.

We ask that your comments remain relevant to the articles they appear on and do not include general banter or conversation as this dilutes the effectiveness of the comments section.

We strive to make the CapeTalk community a safe and welcoming space for all.

CapeTalk reserves the right to: 1) remove any comments that do not follow the above guidelines; and, 2) ban users who repeatedly infringe the rules.

Should you find any comments upsetting or offensive you can also flag them and we will assess it against our guidelines.

CapeTalk is constantly reviewing its comments policy in order to create an environment conducive to constructive conversations.

Read More
Ahmed Timol's nephew speaks: Justice four decades after his uncle's death

Ahmed Timol's nephew speaks: Justice four decades after his uncle's death

Imtiaz Cajee, Ahmed Timol's nephew chats to Bongani Bingwa about his relentless pursuit for getting justice for his uncle.

De Waal Drive is now renamed after Philip Kgosana, but who was he? Here's a look

De Waal Drive is now renamed after Philip Kgosana, but who was he? Here's a look

Cape Town's well-known bend has been renamed in honour of PAC stalwart Philip Kgosana, but very few know his historic importance.

Judge rules: Security police tortured and murdered Ahmed Timol

Judge rules: Security police tortured and murdered Ahmed Timol

The court has rejected the security police version that Ahmed Timol took his life by jumping from a window to his death.

2004: Mike Wills reflects on Jacob Zuma, Schabir Shaik, and more

2004: Mike Wills reflects on Jacob Zuma, Schabir Shaik, and more

As we continue our 20th birthday celebrations, we're joined by former general manager Mike Wills, who reflects on an extraordinary year.

Sandton is the trend setter of Africa -  architect

Sandton is the trend setter of Africa - architect

Architect at Paragon Group, Hugh Fraser chats to Azania Mosaka about the facelift Sandton landscape and buildings are getting.

Mkhewbane: lessons learned over Reserve Bank 'remedial action'

Mkhewbane: lessons learned over Reserve Bank 'remedial action'

Mkhwebane was grilled by MPs about her controversial report which directed Parliament to change the Reserve Bank’s mandate.

Fezekile Kuzwayo's story mirrors wrongs in SA society - Redi Tlhabi

Fezekile Kuzwayo's story mirrors wrongs in SA society - Redi Tlhabi

Author and broadcaster Redi Tlhabi says her new book looks at Fezekile "Khwezi" Kuzwayo's life, but also has a broader message.

Research reveals how height has stifled socio-economic growth for black SA men

Research reveals how height has stifled socio-economic growth for black SA men

By the end of apartheid, the height difference between black and white men had widened to 9 cms, likely due to poor nutrition.

300 000 Joburg housing backlog

300 000 Joburg housing backlog

Eusebius McKasier and guests explore the hijacked buildings and housing backlog issues permeating the City of Gold.

Gigaba files third affidavit against Public Protector

Gigaba files third affidavit against Public Protector

Eyewitness News revealed that the Public Protector's attorneys have withdrawn from the controversial Absa bailout case.

Meet Johnny Clegg, a legend of legends on his final journey

Meet Johnny Clegg, a legend of legends on his final journey

Most South Africans need no introduction to Johnny Clegg. Ray White interviews him about his life and times, and final journey.

Popular articles
[Listen] Lottery responds to Tshepo's Fraud claims

[Listen] Lottery responds to Tshepo's Fraud claims

Phillemon Letwaba says Tshepo's case are some of the issues that they are dealing with on a daily basis.

'He told me people would want to keep him quiet at any cost'

'He told me people would want to keep him quiet at any cost'

Journalist Gavin Evans says the late Mark Minnie spoke to him about his fears that those he exposed in his book might harm him.

Zille won't stop fighting to have SANDF property released for affordable housing

Zille won't stop fighting to have SANDF property released for affordable housing

Zille says properties under the control of the state should be made available for local government's affordable housing plans.

'There is no verse in the Quran that says women should cover their faces'

'There is no verse in the Quran that says women should cover their faces'

Dr Taj Hargey says he is advocating for the ban of women wearing burkas in public because they look ridiculous.

[LISTEN] IRR believes list of targeted farms is genuine

[LISTEN] IRR believes list of targeted farms is genuine

Institute for Race Relations researches Terence Corrigan explains why they believe the list Afriforum has released is genuine.