October 2018: The Mokgoro and Zondo inquiries

The Mokgoro inquiry:

In 2018 a national inquiry headed by Judge Mokgoro was appointed to deal with the fitness of certain senior state prosecutors to hold office. Under the  rules of engagement, ( Rule 20 and 34 are relevant), the commission in its own rules committed to uphold principles of fairness and reasonableness to all parties, yet it allowed witnesses to smear third parties such as myself, with no recourse to cross examination or right to reply.

General JW Booysen hijacked the inquiry and used the opportunity to further character assassinate me on national TV. I was never approached for a right to reply or to cross examine him. In fact, he was allowed to perform one of his famous acts, in order to gain further public support and boost the sales of his book. According to the rules of the inquiry, since my name was mentioned by a witness, there was an obligation to notify me in advance in order to prepare a reply and perhaps ask for a cross examination. It never happened. Once again I was subjected to a repeated pattern of fake news character assassination campaign unfolding in front of me, while I was in exile. As the South African judiciary allowed for the violation of my rights, I felt as though I was being treated as a second-class citizen. In February 2019 I made submissions through my Greek attorney to the Mokgoro Inquiry. I strongly protested that the Inquiry had violated my legal rights. Their reply was dated 15th February 2019.

A few months later on, I was informed that the Zondo commission was appointed to deal with state capture and a hearing began on 20 August 2018. I had no clue of the South African politics and the Zuma presidency state capture scandal, since Zuma only become president in South Africa in 2009, a year after I was forced to go in exile. I knew that General Booysen will try to hijack this commission as well, in order to manipulate the judiciary and gain publicity, credibility as well as boost his book sales. Thankfully the investigative panel at the Zondo Commission, did not took seriously Booysen’s testimony, and there was no mentioning or any recommendations regarding his testimony, within the five thousand pages report of the Zondo Commission that was released in 2022.

14 October 2018

Regrettably in South Africa, the truth about the Cato Manor death squad was distorted, the officers responsible for decades of horror, of racism, torture and extrajudicial killings, walked free and whistleblowers that had the courage to come forward and report wrongdoing as well as corruption within the Police were silenced, killed, or had their character assassinated via fake news media.

Journalists with decades of excellent reputation and work, who dared to investigate and publish articles regarding the atrocities committed by the Cato Manor unit and their leader, General Booysen, were smeared, and he attempted to destroy their careers.The Sunday times was forced  to retract the story, due to a blackmail, by a lobby of characters in support of Booysen and his teams false narrative, conveniently alleging being victims of the State capture.

Dr. Mary de Haas, a political violence researcher and social justice advocate, heavily criticised the Sunday Times retraction of the Cato Manor death squad stories.

And here is former Sunday Times editor Ray Hartley’s blistering  response to the retraction.

Later an inquiry held by a respected retired judge found that the sources of the Sunday Times journalists who wrote the Cato Manor stories had not been discredited. Judge Cathy Satchwell said that the evidence given to the journalists by human rights activists and members of the community with no connections to the newspaper was “compelling”.  

Here are the full quotes from the Satchwell report I am referring to:

Paragraph 8.206

The sources upon which the reporters relied in the Cato Manor stories have not been discredited and one of the prime sources, Mary de Haas, has publicly confirmed her information. More than 40 people are dead and the Hawks and the NPA all conducted their own investigations resulting in prosecutions. These were not figments of the imagination of the journalists involved. 

Paragraph 8.138

… the Panel would add that the opprobrium the stories attracted may have ensured the issue is not now revisited by any media, despite the compelling testimony of community members and human rights activists unconnected with the Sunday Times.