‘Only white SA officers were allowed to interrogate political detainees’

Former apartheid South Africa security officer Joseph Nyampule has told the court that only white police officers were allowed to interrogate political detainees.

Black  officers were used as escorts and translators during interrogations.

Nyampule is currently giving evidence at anti-apartheid activist Neil Aggett’s death Inquest at the High Court in Johannesburg.

Aggett was found hanging in his cell on February 5, 1982.

Nyampule told the inquest that when he arrived at John Vorster square police station, he was made to sign documents which were in Afrikaans.

These documents forbid them from disclosing any information on the goings within the notorious police station.

Officers were also not allowed to discuss political detainees among themselves.

He says one of his colleagues tried to assist a detainee by taking a message from him to his family as they were from the same area.

However, Nyampule says this police officer was transferred immediately to another police station.