23 August 1993
Human rights abuses were common in South Africa during the apartheid era and the liberation struggle was aimed at bringing these abuses to an end. When apartheid crumbled in the late 1980s the task of reconstructing a society in which human rights would be upheld begun.This involved inquiries into the nature of the human rights abuses and the possible granting of amnesty to those who committed the abuse. Although the focus of these inquiries were largely on the role played by the agents of the apartheid government, reports on acts of violence committed in ANC camps also began to surface in 1992.In response to allegations that ANC members tortured individuals suspected of being government agents in their Angola, Zambia and Tanzania camps, a commission of inquiry was set up.Chaired by Advocate Louis Skweyiya, the commission reported that "staggering brutality" had been used on detainees. A recommendation that compensation be paid to victims was made, but this was met with a negative response from the public and a second commission was sent up, this time under S.M. Motsuenyane.On 23 August 1993, the Motsuenyane Commission reported that the ANC was guilty of torture in its camps and that specific individuals were responsible for these abuses. The ANC acknowledged the findings, but felt it inappropriate to take action against these members when the National Party had no such policy in place with regard to abuses committed by its members.In 1995, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission was set up, in which testimony was given on human rights abuses committed by both members of the ANC and agents of the apartheid government.