/ 25 January 2010

Winnie criticises possible De Kock pardon

ANC MP and struggle stalwart Winnie Madikizela-Mandela has criticised the possibility of former Vlakplaas head Eugene de Kock receiving a pardon, the Star newspaper reported on Monday.

“I cannot imagine anyone talking release of people like that,” Madikizela-Mandela told the newspaper.

“I cannot believe that we can even begin talking about [De Kock’s early release], I just can’t.”

Madikizela-Mandela compared the possible release of De Kock to that of Janusz Walus, who was convicted for the murder of Umkhonto weSizwe and SA Communist Party leader Chris Hani.

“It pains me so much to even talk about that. When you talk about De Kock, you talk about Walus to me,” she said.

Speculation had been rife that De Kock was to receive a pardon after it was reported he had met President Jacob Zuma last year.

Some weekend newspapers reported his release was imminent.

“Some of the children who were groomed by me were killed by De Kock. Some of the young cadres who were groomed by me were killed by De Kock,” Madikizela-Mandela said.

“What about the victims? I know some of the mothers of the children who were killed by him. They haven’t been asked [if he should be released].”

“[De Kock’s release] is a subject I cannot even consider. I lost too much. I saw too much blood to support such a move. I just find that very hurtful … that anybody should even talk about his release. He deserves to be where he is,” she said.

Beeld on Monday devoted an entire page to the subject of De Kock’s pardon and published comments from nearly 50 public intellectuals, academics and entertainers. – Sapa