Notorious role of Ferdi Barnard is disclosed

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Ferdi Barnard

Monday, 16 November 1992

After the Goldstone Commission's first disclosure of the complicity of elements of the South African Defence Force (SADF) in violence in South Africa on 16 October 1992, they released a press statement on this date, giving particulars relating to the employment of Ferdi Barnard by the Directorate: Covert Collection (DCC). The commission seized various files in a raid on 11 November on the offices of Pan Afrik Industrial Investment Consultants, a DCC front company, which further provided information that elements of the SADF were involved in illegal and unauthorised activities. The raid also exposed partial glimpses of other operations, such as those aimed at subverting Self-Defence Units, in which they found evidence that Barnard, a convicted murderer and former Civil Co-Operation Bureau (CCB) agent, was employed by the DCC. He had written up a project proposal in June 1991 for the task force he was to lead, specialising on the activities of Umkhonto we Sizwe (MK). The proposal was to discredit MK by involving the movement in illegal activities and syndicates which would ensure that they would be "criminally compromised". His plan was submitted to senior Military Intelligence (MI) officials and approved.

On 18 November 1992 President W.F. de Klerk appointed Lt-Gen. Pierre Steyn as head of all intelligence functions of the SADF, including MI. One of Steyn's tasks was to investigate covert operations and military involvement in unrest areas. De Klerk dismissed several high-ranking officers following his report.

References:
• Fraser, R. (1992). Keesing's Record of World Events, Longman: London, p. 39177.

Last updated : 14-Nov-2013

This article was produced by South African History Online on 16-Mar-2011

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