The Pan-Africanist Congress (PAC) president Clarence Makwetu announced the PAC''s suspension of its armed struggle, thus opening the way for election participation by its members. With the ANC and the PAC banned and African political activity officially limited to government-appointed bodies in the homelands, young people sought alternative means to express their political aspirations. This led to a period of exile and the turn to armed struggle by the Azanian Peolple''s Liberation Army (APLA) and Umkhonto we Sizwe, military wings of the PAC and ANC respectively. The armed struggled, begun early in the 1960s was intensified in the second half of the 1970s through to the early 1990s.
Both the PAC and the PAC suspended armed struggle in the months leading to the first democratic elections in 1994. The announcement by Makwetu therefore marked the cesation of armed hostilities between the liberation movement and the Apartheid government.