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Prosecute apartheid offenders

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NPA head Shamila Batohi has been urged by MPs to prosecute those who did not appear before the commission and those not granted amnesty by the TRC

Former apartheid police officer Joao Rodrigues appears at the at the South Gauteng high court, Rodrigues was an officer in the apartheid-era police's feared security branch, is accused of being part of a group of policemen who murdered Ahmed Timol while he was in custody in 1971. File Photo: Itumeleng English/African News Agency (ANA)

The decision whether to oppose or grant apartheid-era policeman João Rodriques’ attempt for a permanent stay of prosecution will take place next year with the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) fighting the bid in the interest of South Africans and the families of the victims of the racist regime.

Rodriques was the last person to see Ahmed Timol alive at the notorious John Vorster Square in Johannesburg.

The Timol inquest was reopened last year and the ruling that Timol was murdered and the recommendation that the NPA probe Rodriques’ role in the death offered hope to those who had wanted closure for decades.

As government considers reopening the lists for victims who had not shared their apartheid-era abuses at the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC), politicians have called for the prosecution of those who did not come clean with apartheid-era atrocities.

NPA head Shamila Batohi has been urged by MPs to prosecute those who did not appear before the commission and those not granted amnesty by the TRC.

This must be dealt with urgently as the perpetrators of some of the most heinous crimes against humanity, and who had been protected by the apartheid-era regime, may shuffle off this mortal coil without having to account for the brutality they carried out in the pursuit of racial superiority.