Wilhelmina Williams ’pillar’ of Bonteheuwel dies
Wilhelmina Williams, the mother of anti-apartheid activist Coline Williams, died on Friday without seeing justice served for the death of her daughter.
Fondly known as Aunty Mientjies, she is survived by her youngest daughter Selina.
Williams was 81 years old and had suffered from dementia.
Coline Williams and Robert Waterwitch died on July 23,1989 when an explosive device detonated opposite the Athlone Magistrate’s Court and police station.
Selina said her mom had always been the torch-bearer for her generation in their family: “They were two children and her brother passed on when she was very young, so already that meant that for years she was the only survivor of her generation.”
Selina said there was a significance to the death of many of her family members: “We were four children. My first sibling died at 22, and on the eve of the tribute to Robert and Coline, which the mayor did ... the statues in Athlone ... my eldest brother passed on December 15 and my mom could not participate because my brother had just died.”
She added: “Then my second brother, a few months later, died on the same day as Ashley Kriel’s 20th commemoration, July 9, 2007, and then in 2008 on Human Rights Day my father passed on. So there are all these significant dates, and then my mom passed on today, on the ANC’s birthday.”
In a statement, the ANC in Bonteheuwel described Wilhelmina Williams as “a pillar or cornerstone of the Bonteheuwel community of activists and comrades (who) will forever be remembered and engraved in the history of Bonteheuwel”.
“As the ANC in Bonteheuwel, we say thank you Cde aunty Mientjies for everything, for your children Coline Williams and Selina you have borrowed to fight together with us in the struggle for liberation.”