The Trial of Nelson Mandela (Rivonia
Trial): Closing Statement of Percy Yutar
Although the State has
charged the accused of sabotage, this is
nevertheless a case of High Treason par excellence. It is a classic
case of the
intended overthrow of the government by force and violence with
other assistance of foreign countries. The acts have been corroborated
accused themselves. Nevertheless, for reasons which I need not here
State has preferred to charge the accused with sabotage....
deceit of the accused is
amazing. Although they represented scarcely more than 1% of the
African population (a reference to the evidence that the ANC had
members), they took it upon themselves to tell the world that the
Africans in South
are suppressed, oppressed and depressed. It is tragic to think that the
accused, who between themselves did not have the courage to commit a
of sabotage should nevertheless have incited their followers to acts of
and guerrilla warfare, armed insurrection and open rebellion and
done that, they would
then from the safety and comfort of their hideouts at Rivonia,
Mountainview, have surveyed the savage scene of slaughter on both sides
a great pity that the rank and file of the Bantu in this country who
law abiding, faithful and loyal should have been duped by false
free bread, free transport, free medical services and free
to mention free holidays....
shows how the conspirators were deluding people. Kathrada has said that
the State should be ashamed to mention Sharpeville and Langa. However,
this document is evidence to show that what was supposed to be
uprisings were in fact engineered by the ANC and the Communist Party.
reason I, on
behalf of the State, am not ashamed to speak of these events....
the outset of my argument I
said that this case was one of High Treason par excellence. Because of
people who have lost their lives and suffered injury as a result of the
activities of the accused it is apparent that this case is now one of
and attempted murder as well.
bold to say that every particular allegation in the indictment has been
There is not a single material allegation in the opening address that
been proved. On the evidence it is clear
that without the
action of the police, South Africa might have found itself in
civil war. The public owes a great debt of gratitude to the police.