By Shamin Chibba
Jerry Mosololi was one of the Moroka Three, who were executed by the apartheid government in 1983.
As a member of the armed wing of the ANC, Umkhonto we Sizwe, Mosololi carried out attacks on police stations in 1979 and 1981, in which four black policemen died. After his arrest, he was tortured until he confessed to the attacks.
According to Sowetan newspaper, Mosololi's capture played out like a Frederick Forsythe novel.
On a warm summer day in Hammanskraal, a young farm worker found a large hole on the western side of the 20ha farm on which he worked. He soon discovered that it was a hideout. Three men who lived there tried to talk to him from a distance but the worker ran towards the farmhouse to alert his boss. The three men dashed in the opposite direction.
Police arrived and cordoned off the area. Mosololi and Simon Thelle Mogoerane – who had gone shopping – arrived at the hideout unaware of what was awaiting them. They were captured.
Marcus Thabo Motaung joined them in the cell after he was caught in Klipgat. The three, known as the "Moroka Three", were charged with high treason and 20 alternative charges, including the attack at New Canada railway station and Central Park electric sub-station.
They pleaded not guilty, saying police brutality during the 1976 student uprising was the cause for their actions against the police in Soweto and Wonderboom.
On 6 August 1982, ignoring evidence of police brutality, Justice DJ Curlewis passed a guilty verdict and imposed the death penalty. On 7 June 1983, the United Nations Security Council appealed for clemency and called on the South African government to commute the sentences.
However, two days later the government rejected the plea and on the same day, Mosololi, Mogoerane and Motaung were hanged at Pretoria Central Prison.