From "Mission to South Africa," the report of the Commonwealth Emminent Persons Group:
Negotiations leading to fundamental political change and the erection of democratic structures will only be possible if the South African government is prepared to deal with leaders of the people's choosing rather than with puppets of its own creation. President P. W.Botha's recent statements expressing his determination to "break" the African National Congress bode ill for the country's future. There can be no negotiated settlement in South Africa without the ANC; the breadth of its support is incontestable; and this support is growing. . . .
The government made it clear that it did not regard the ANC as the only other party to negotiations. We agree, but would emphasize that the ANC is a necessary party. The government itself acknowledges this, if only by blaming the ANC for most of the violence. The open identification with the ANC through banners and songs, in funerals and in churches throughout the country, despite the risks involved, supports the widely held belief that if an election were held today on the basis of universal franchise the ANC would win it.
Whatever the truth of that assertion, we nonetheless recognize that black political opinion is not monolithic. If, therefore, the government is serious about negotiations, it must create conditions in which free political activity becomes possible, and political parties and leaders are able to function effectively and test the extent of their popular support. Tragically, the whole thrust of the government policy has been to thwart such legitimate leadership from emerging and destroy it where it does. . . .