MANDELA, Nelson (b.1918), President of South Africa (1994-1999). A collection of eight documents and forty photographs relating to the Rivonia trial of Nelson Mandela and other members of the African National Congress, n.p. [Pretoria], n.d. [3 December 1963 - 11 June 1964], including:
Three documents (typewritten) for the case for the Prosecution, including the Indictment, 'The State against Nelson Mandela and Others', (two copies, each 9 pages, folio); Annexure 'A', 'Particulars to the counts set out in the Indictment', 19 pages, folio; and Annexure 'B', 'Witness statements relating to alleged acts of sabotage', typewritten with manuscript insertions and annotations, 31 pages, folio, each document in paper wrappers, green silk ties (wrappers slightly soiled and worn at edges, a few small splits in folds).
A plan (photographic copy of manuscript original) 'Showing the scene of the Alleged Crime at Lilly Leaf Farm', 580 x 680 mm (splits in folds);
Four typewritten documents for 'The State's Concluding Address in The State versus Nelson Mandela and Others', Parts I - IV, the first entitled 'A factual analysis of the Documentary Exhibits handed in, and of the oral testimony given, by the state witnesses', comprising Parts I and II, 169 and 194 pages, folio; Part III, 'Rivonia Exhibits', 160 pages, folio; Part IV, 'Factual analysis of the defence case and further documentary exhibits produced in the course thereof', 105 pages, folio, the parts bound in four volumes, blue boards;
A collection of forty photographs including 13 of the ten accused (Nelson Mandela, Walter Sisulu, Denis Goldberg, Govan Mbeki, James Kantor, Ahmed Kathrada, Lionel Bernstein, Raymond Mhlaba, Elias Motsoaledi and Andreas Mlangeni), and 27 of the twenty-four 'co-conspirators' (Robert Resha, Oliver Tambo, Joseph Slovo and others), black and white, sizes 45 x 40 mm - 150 x 95 mm, most stapled to card leaves, in a contemporary file.
Provenance: Percy Yutar (State Prosecutor at the Rivonia Trial), and by descent.
DOCUMENTS FROM ONE THE MOST HISTORIC TRIALS OF THE 20TH-CENTURY, AT WHICH NELSON MANDELA WAS SENTENCED TO LIFE IMPRISONMENT. He was released after serving over twenty-five years, in February 1990.
The Indictment (presented in the Supreme Court in Pretoria in December 1963) accuses the defendants of acts of sabotage and, as the 'National High Command' [of the militant Umkhonto we Sizwe, or MK], of recruiting members for the purpose of committing acts of violence and destruction, and for training for the purpose of promoting violent revolution in South Africa, and of soliciting and distributing funds for this. The Annexures list 193 acts of sabotage (many of them damage to communications), with witness statements and annotations indicating whether they were proven, and details of the purchase of Liliesleaf Farm, and lists of agents.
The first Indictment in the Rivonia Trial was submitted in October, and quashed. The revised Indictment (the present document) included the new charges of recruiting persons for sabotage and guerrilla warfare for the purpose of starting revolution and linked the African National Congress with the banned Communist Party of South Africa and the militant Umkhonto we Sizwe (MK) movement,of which Mandela was head. Crucial to the Prosecutor's case was the charge that the accused had approved an operation intended to foment revolution ('Operation Mayibuye'), which was described in detail in papers discovered in the police raid on Liliesleaf Farm in the Johannesburg suburb of Rivonia, an isolated property acquired in 1961, which Mandela, then in hiding, had used. He had been arrested in August 1962, when he received a five year sentence, in part for leaving the country without a passport. He was nine months into this sentence when the authorities discovered Liliesleaf Farm and the entire High Command of the MK was detained. Throughout the trial Mandela (who was already in prison when the plan was drafted) and his fellow-accused denied that Operation Mayibuye had been agreed.
The trial was watched intently by the outside world. Yutar, who had a certain grandiose, theatrical style, and was close to the government, was a merciless prosecutor. His final speech was delivered on 20 May 1964. Nonetheless, the Judge accepted that Mandela and the other accused had not authorised 'Operation Mayibuye', while finding them guilty of sabotage. Mandela and eight others were sentenced to life imprisonment, and detained on Robben Island. Mandela was released on 11 February 1990, and his comrades set free three months earlier.
In 1995 President Mandela gave lunch in Pretoria to Percy Yutar, by now eighty-four, as a magnanimous expression of forgiveness. (10)