The government and the African National Congress agree on a common commitment
towards the resolution of the existing climate of violence and intimidation from
whatever quarter as well as a commitment to stability and to a peaceful process
Flowing from this commitment, the following was agreed upon:
- The establishment of a working group to make recommendations on a definition
of political offences in the South African situation; to discuss, in this
regard, time scales; and to advise on norms and mechanisms for dealing with the
release of political prisoners and the granting of immunity in respect of
political offences to those inside and outside South Africa. All persons who may
be affected will be considered. The working group will bear in mind experiences
in Namibia and elsewhere. The working group will aim to complete its work before
21st May 1990. It is understood that the South African government, in its
discretion, may consider other political parties and movement and other relevant
bodies. The proceedings of the working group will be confidential. In the
meantime the following offences will receive attention immediately:
- The leaving of the country without a valid travel document.
- Any offences related merely to organizations which were previously
- In addition to the arrangements mentioned in paragraph 1, temporary immunity
from prosecution of political offences committed before today, will be
considered on an urgent basis for members of the National Executive Committee
and selected other members of the ANC from outside the country, to enable them
to return and help with the establishment and management of political
activities, to assist in bringing violence to an end and to take part in
peaceful political negotiations.
- The government undertakes to review existing security legislation to bring
it into line with the new dynamic situation developing in South Africa in order
to ensure normal and free political activities.
- The government reiterates its commitment to work towards the lifting of the
state of emergency. In this context, the ANC will exert itself to fulfill the
objectives contained in the preamble.
- Efficient channels of communication between the government and the ANC will
be established in order to curb violence and intimidation from whatever quarter
The government and the ANC agree that the objectives contained in this minute
should be achieved as early as possible.
4th May 1990