Msimang, a true revolutionary
Special burial for ANC stalwart
Born: December 8 1928 Died: December 3 Funeral: Tomorrow at the Christian Revival Church, corner Lynnwood and Solomon Mahlangu roads in Tshwane, Pretoria
A giant has fallen. A relentless fighter for freedom and justice is no more.
A passionate champion for the rights of the poor and downtrodden has gone the way of all mortal flesh. A tireless defender of our revolution has been reunited with Oliver Tambo, Nelson Mandela, Walter Sisulu, Ruth Mompati, Lillian Ngoyi, Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, Chris Hani and many distinguished leaders of our movement.
The ANC family, its alliance partners and the rest of the country, are devastated by the passing of one of its loyal cadres, comrade Mendi Msimang. We mourn the passing of this stalwart and veteran of our movement, who never wavered in the face of difficulties but remained loyal to the national democratic revolution.
Msimang personified core values of the congress movement. Death has robbed the people of SA of one of its finest sons who valued the freedom of his people more than his own life. Msimang’s death marks the end of a revolutionary life that was dedicated to the Struggle for justice, and the defence of our freedom.
Uncle Mendi, as he was affectionately known, belongs to that generation of freedom fighters who were prepared to pay the supreme price in pursuit of the liberation.
This unwavering revolutionary served his people selflessly, and with no expectation of any material rewards. He is an example worthy of emulation by the younger generation.
Uncle Mendi, was a longserving member of the ANC, having cut his teeth along with Sisulu and others in the ANC Youth League as a student.
In recognition of his commitment to the ideals of the ANC, and the democratic government, Msimang was awarded the Order for Meritorious Service in Silver by former president Nelson Mandela in 1999, along with other South African greats such as Ray Alexander Simons, George Bizos, Miriam Makeba, Francis Baard, to name but a few.
Msimang remained a relentless and calm activist. Despite his advanced age, he continued to serve the country and the ANC as a member of the ANC integrity commission appointed in 2013, and a member of the advisory board on national orders.
We salute him for his unwavering commitment to serve selflessly and with humility. We commit to continue to celebrate his life and leadership, and preserve his legacy for future generations.
When comrade Mathews Phosa was elected ANC treasurer-general at our 52nd national conference in Polokwane, he invited him to serve on the finance committee.
Msimang went underground when the ANC was banned in 1961, and was directed to join Oliver Tambo in the ANC in London.
After years of service in exile‚ including as ANC chief representative in the UK‚ he returned to SA. He was elected to the national executive committee of the ANC at its first conference after its unbanning in 1991.
Msimang was the husband of the later former health minister Manto Tshabalala-Msimang who died in 2009.
Msimang will be given a special official funeral tomorrow in Pretoria.
Mendi Msimang served ANC right into advanced age.