Ten long years after President Mbeki was handed the final report of the TRC on Human Rights Day 2003, apartheid victims who have yet to be recognised as having suffered gross human rights violations, now face the injustice of the resources in the victims’ reparations fund being disbursed to municipalities for the proposed renovation of infrastructure.
This is happening despite thousands of interventions made by victims themselves to ensure access to appropriate and effective remedies. It remains inconceivable that a Justice Ministry could preside over implementing proposals characterised by such callous disregard for human suffering, particularly in the month dedicated to human rights in South Africa.
Countries that have drawn inspiration from the example of the South African transition are dismayed by these developments. The South African Coalition for Transitional Justice has instructed lawyers to explore the legality of this action in a country increasingly being characterised for ineffective state action in dealing with economic injustice.
Ten years on and twenty years into democracy, the state has not yet taken the views and submissions of victims seriously. Thousands of appeals have been lodged to date by apartheid victims with the Presidential Hotline to no avail despite the contributions of those who were violated in the quest to bring a new government to power. They will never forget the extent of this failure.
Issued by Khulumani Support Group.