Parkwood youths commemorate Pedro’s death

Youth group Moving Forward entertained the Parkwood community.

Moving Forward, a community youth group, and leader Zelda Manuel, of Parkwood, commemorated the death of Pedro Page who was shot dead by a named member of the South African Police in Parkwood Estate, on September 6 1989, during the dark days of apart- heid.

Pedro was the youngest of eight children. His sister, Mercelle Courie, who still lives in Parkwood, said he would have been 45 years old this year.

“He attended Fairmount High School, in Grassy Park. He was a very friendly boy, who had many friends.”

Ms Courie said on the day Pedro was shot, he was walking to a friend’s house to listen to music. People were protesting and burning tyres in Acasia Road, so Pedro stood still to watch. A police- man who was allegedly off duty, shot at him. Pedro was rushed to Victoria Hospital where he underwent an operation, but he died.

“The family was devastated. My father, Joe, didn’t take the news very well and he got ill soon after. He passed away the following year,” said Ms Courie.

On the day of the commemoration, Moving Forward provided soup, bread and chips to the children of Parkwood, as well as some entertainment, and Ms Manuel gave the children a motivational talk.

Ms Manuel said: “I make the children aware of how to protect themselves against drugs, alco- hol, gangsterism and abuse. I also told them to take respon- sibility for their houses and community.

“The police, social workers and magistrates can’t change you. It all starts in our homes. I want to encourage children and parents to move forward and fulfill their goals and dreams as it is never too late to make positive changes in your life.”