Truth and Reconciliation in South Africa
Five South African men, including former Police Minister Adriaan Vlok, have received suspended prison sentences for attempting to assassinate a prominent anti-apartheid leader 18 years ago. The intended target, Frank Chikane, who now works for the president, did not want the men to go to prison. Vlok previously sought forgiveness by washing Chikane’s feet.
A post-apartheid Truth and Reconciliation Commission – headed by Nobel peace laureate Archbishop Desmond Tutu – investigated offences committed during the apartheid era and granted amnesty to those who admitted their crimes.
Vlok appeared before the commission, and received amnesty for a series of bombings, but did not ask for immunity for the attempted poisoning of Rev Chikane.
Earlier this month, the former South African President, F W De Klerk, denied any involvement in crimes or human rights abuses committed during the apartheid era.