Tsopo saluted for her strong ded­i­ca­tion

The Star Early Edition - - POLITICS - NONI MOKATI

THE fu­neral ser­vice of MP and former Free State MEC and Speaker of the Pro­vin­cial Leg­is­la­ture, Mantsheng Anna Tsopo, pic­tured, will be held tomorrow at the Vir­ginia Methodist Church in the Free State.

Tsopo, who was in­stru­men­tal in the ANC Women’s League, passed away in the early hours of New Year’s Day. She was ad­mit­ted to a lo­cal hospi­tal on Christ­mas Eve af­ter not feel­ing well.

Free State Leg­is­la­ture chief spokesper­son Life Mokone yes­ter­day said a num­ber of pro­vin­cial and na­tional dig­ni­taries had al­ready con­firmed their at­ten­dance, among them Premier Ace Ma­gashule.

“Some mem­bers of the As­sem­bly, former Man­gaung mayor Thabo Many­oni, Deputy Speaker of Par­lia­ment Lech­esa Tsenoli, and the may­ors will also be there,” Mokone said.

He said the fu­neral pro­gramme would go ahead as planned de­spite the ANC’s birth­day cel­e­bra­tions on Sunday.

Tsopo will be given an of­fi­cial fu­neral. In a state­ment, the Free State leg­is­la­ture said Tsopo had ded­i­cated her life to the ser­vice of the peo­ple across the coun­try un­til her last days. In 1994, the former teacher was elected as a mem­ber of the first demo­crat­i­cally con­sti­tuted leg­is­la­ture in the Free State and ap­pointed as MEC of Lo­cal Gov­ern­ment and Hous­ing. She be­came the Leader of Gov­ern­ment Busi­ness from 1997 to1999. Dur­ing the same pe­riod un­til 2004 she also served as MEC across other port­fo­lios such as ed­u­ca­tion, sports, arts, cul­ture and re­cre­ation and so­cial devel­op­ment. In 2013, she was ap­pointed Speaker of the Free State pro­vin­cial leg­is­la­ture.

ANC Women’s League sec­re­tary-gen­eral Meokgo Matuba de­scribed Tsopo as a strong leader with a pas­sion for eman­ci­pa­tion.

“She fought for the rights of women in South Africa and knew through our strug­gles that we women need to be united.”

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