Carl Niehaus of MKVA made the call at the commemoration of Kriel’s death. About a 100 people joined a 67-minute walk from the Anton Fransch memorial in Church Street to Hazendal, Athlone where Kriel, also a former MK soldier, was killed.
Hosted by MKMVA, people were taken by bus to Samaj Centre in Athlone where a memorial lecture and screening of Action Commandant, the documentary on Kriel’s life was shown.
“Many young people like Ashley Kriel fought for liberty, they made huge sacrifices.The case of Ashley is just like that of Ahmed Timol. We are questioning many things, as apartheid police told their side of the story, but evidence said otherwise. We will be taking it to court, we want it to be investigated,” Niehaus said.
Kriel, then a 20-year-old student activist from Bonteheuwel, was killed in 1987 in Hazendal, Athlone. He had returned home after receiving military training in exile. Apartheid police officer Jeffrey Benzien received amnesty at the Truth and Reconciliation Commission for the death of Kriel.
Niehaus said they believe Benzien did not tell the truth of what happened and how they killed Kriel.
“It is not right how he died, how was someone, who was handcuffed, shot dead. People like Benzien are walking on the streets free while they destroyed many families.
“We still have long walk to freedom, it is not possible for us to just let go what happened, we cannot turn a eye away as families were torn.”
Niehaus said the walk was for those who had fallen on the streets fighting for a better future.
“We want to show them they will never be forgotten, as they made huge sacrifices.Their blood that ran on the streets was not in vain. In the documentary we are showing the youth that they need to stand together and fight for their rights, as the Struggle is not totally over and stand for what they believe in. Just like Kriel did. We are showing them how the youth take instructions.”