Peter Gastrow played a key role in the promotion of peace in South Africa. As a lawyer and a member of Parliament, he participated in the establishment of the National Peace Accord. He chaired the Law and Order Subcouncil of the transitional government and was special adviser to the minister of safety and security. He was a visiting fellow at the institute in 1983.
Signed by all the major political and labor leaders in 1991, the National Peace Accord-- a countrywide network of peace committees at the local, regional, and national levels--served as an extraordinary and daring experiment in conflict resolution. Gastrow describes the initiatives and events that led to the signing of the accord, exploring in particular the important roles played by religious groups and the business community. Noting that the NPA is without precedent internationally, he examines its impact on political violence, the democratization process, and socio-economic reconstruction and development in South Africa.