Cape Town, South Africa, Tuesday 8 March 2022 –

The Institute for Justice and Reconciliation welcomes the decision on Friday 4th March by Justice Motsamai Makume in the Johannesburg High Court, who ruled that the death of Neil Aggett was not an accident. The original inquest into the matter found that no-one was to blame and that Aggett’s death was a suicide, despite the fact that he had made claims of torture shortly before his death.

While we welcome the opportunity for justice to be served in this instance, we are concerned that it has taken forty years to get to this point. This, and other apartheid era crimes, have yet to receive the attention that they deserve. Witnesses and perpetrators have grown old and some have passed away. As time goes by it will become more and more difficult to offer justice to the families of those who were murdered by the apartheid regime.

The importance of justice and truth-telling is key for both the families of victims and the broader society as a whole to move forward.

We call on all relevant government departments and agencies to pursue justice for the victims of apartheid. For enquiries contact: Sam Kambule; email:

Institute for Justice and Reconciliation