Ex-MP Septem­ber dies, aged 90

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - FRONT PAGE - STAFF REPORTER

ANTI-APARTHEID ac­tivist and ANC vet­eran Regi­nald “Reg­gie” Septem­ber died yes­ter­day evening af­ter a long ill­ness. He was 90.

Ac­cord­ing to the Dean of Cape Town, Fa­ther Michael Weeder, Septem­ber died “partly be­cause of the pas­sage of time” as he had had a ma­jor stroke and had been bedrid­den for some time.

At the time of his death, Septem­ber was liv­ing in Jo­han­nes­burg with his wife, Melissa Steyn.

Septem­ber was born in Wyn­berg in 1923. He at­tended Trafal­gar High School where, ac­cord­ing to Weeder, he had “the rich ex­pe­ri­ence” of be­ing in­tro­duced to the Na­tional Lib­er­a­tion League and meet­ing Jimmy La Guma, John Go­mas, John Mor­ley, Cissie Gool, Goolam Gool and Moses Kotane.

Af­ter com­plet­ing his ma­tric, Sep- tem­ber worked in a num­ber of jobs. His po­lit­i­cal in­volve­ment saw him be­come a full-time trade union­ist.

Septem­ber went abroad in the early 1950s and on his re­turn in 1953 was one of the founders of the SA Coloured Peo­ples Or­gan­i­sa­tion, which be­came part of the Congress Al­liance.

He faced gov­ern­ment ban­ning or­ders, was charged with trea­son and im­pris­oned for five months with­out trial dur­ing the 1960 state of emer­gency. There were more ar­rests and de­ten­tions be­fore Septem­ber went into ex­ile where he be­came the chief rep­re­sen­ta­tive of the ANC in Lon­don and Western Europe.

In 1991 he re­turned from ex­ile and as part of the ANC’s NEC was in­volved in the draw­ing up of the Groote Schuur min­utes. From 1994 un­til 2004 he served as an MP.

He leaves his wife and his chil­dren, Zena, Peter, Jehan and Mark.

Reg­gie Septem­ber

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