The Right to Truth Project  ( 2015 -  )

SAHA has demonstrated a longstanding interest in the South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC). For over a decade, much of SAHA’s  archival practice and information activism, has been focused on making the work and records of, and surrounding, the South African TRC more readily accessible. SAHA draws on the recommendations made by the TRC itself to direct its work, particularly in relation to conducting ongoing truth recovery to uncover further evidence about unknown or unacknowledged aspects of South Africa’s past. This often takes place in the face of little state engagement in continuing the reconciliation agenda begun by the TRC. As of 2015, SAHA has launched a cross-programmatic pilot project, the Right to Truth (RTT) project, to consolidate this work.

SAHA welcomes new staff and kick starts new Right to Truth Project

RTT's first project for 2015 will be the processing of the recently-released TRC Section 29 records. The Section 29 hearings were closed hearings of South Africa’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC), held under Section 29 of the Promotion of National Unity and Reconciliation Act (1995), known as the TRC Act.  The closed hearings consisted of investigative enquiries, whereby those subpoenaed were under oath to divulge the full extent of their knowledge of gross human rights violations committed under the apartheid regime. SAHA obtained access to these documents through a PAIA request, and these records will be lodged in the Freedom of Information Programme's collection.

Take a look at the released transcripts here

The Section 29 transcripts will also be integrated into the collaborative SABC/SAHA website, Truth Commission: Special Report. This website has digitised all the TRC's public hearings documents (making these transcripts fully searchable), and linked them with the SABC's landmark TV series that ran for two years alongside TRC proceedings. The Section 29 documents will further expand this rich archival resource.

SAHA is attempting to contact witnesses who interacted with the Section 29 investigative inquires, to inform them about the public release of these documents. SAHA is only able to rely on information currently in the public domain. If these transcripts refer to you or anyone you know, and are interested in engaging further with SAHA, please contact us: or +27(0)11 718 2560.

Catch up on RTT's news stories for 2015:


RTT in the news
Catch up on the latest RTT news stories from 2015
Read released Section 29 records
SAHA has obtained transcripts from the TRC's secret Section 29 hearings. Read the released transcripts.
SAHA's TRC Collections
SAHA has extensive TRC collections, including photographs, posters and documentation.