#FeesMustFall student activist Kanya Cekeshe is spending Christmas at home following his much-anticipated release from prison early on Tuesday morning.
Department of Justice and Correctional Services spokesperson Chrispin Phiri confirmed to News24 that Cekeshe was a free man.
"He was released in the early hours of the morning. Details of his release formed part of the department's operational information and could not be revealed to the public. I can confirm that he will spend this morning at his home," said Phiri.
Phiri said he could also divulge details of the activist's parole condition.
"His parole condition was done by Correctional Services Parole Board," Phiri said.
Cekeshe was convicted of public violence and malicious damage to property when he tried to set a police van alight during protests in 2016.
He received an eight-year sentence and has been held at the Leeuwkop Correctional Centre in Bryanston, Johannesburg, since 2017. He is believed to have been the last #FeesMustFall activist still in prison.
Cekeshe's attorney Wikus Steyl, from Ian Levitt Attorneys, said he had remained positive that his client was going to be released before Christmas.
"Judging by the amount of effort and manpower involved in his release, I can safely say that Cekeshe was released before 05:00.
"He was hoping and wishing that his release should happen soon before Christmas. He must be excited about his release. It came before Christmas and that is his biggest Christmas gift he has received," Steyl said.