Zuma conveys nation’s condolences to Chabane family

2015-03-16 16:41

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President Jacob Zuma has visited the family of Public Service and Administration Minister Collins Chabane at their home in Limpopo to pay his condolences after the likeable, hard-working minister’s shock death in a car crash this weekend.

Chabane was killed with his bodyguards, Sergeant Lesiba Sekele and Sergeant Lawrence Lenstoane, when their car struck a truck that had allegedly made a U-turn on the N1 near Polokwane in the early hours of yesterday morning.

Chabane will be given a special official funeral, the details of which are still to be announced, Minister in the Presidency Jeff Radebe said yesterday.

Chabane had earlier on Saturday been representing the government at the funeral of Chief Samuel Nxumalo at Magona in Limpopo’s Vhembe District.

Durban mayor James Nxumalo, who had attended the funeral as a representative of the Nxumalo clan, said he had been “touched’’ and “saddened’’ to hear of Chabane’s death, which he described as “shocking’’ the following morning.

As messages of condolences continued to pour in yesterday, provincial and national government leaders arrived at the Chabane home, where a clearly emotional and saddened Zuma spoke of the nation’s and the family’s loss.

Zuma’s deputy, Cyril Ramaphosa, visited the Sekele family at Akasia in Pretoria North to show them support.

Police yesterday said that the driver of the truck, who is in custody, would appear in court tomorrow.

Chabane (54) was a former Robben Island prisoner who went into exile in 1980 after having joined the ANC underground at the age of 17. After receiving military training in Angola, he was infiltrated back into the country but was arrested in 1984 and jailed for six years for terrorism.

After the unbanning of the ANC he became its provincial secretary in Limpopo before being deployed to Parliament in 1994.

Chabane, a keen and talented musician with a reputation for hard work and an ability to listen, was appointed roads MEC in Limpopo in 1997. He served the provincial government until his appointment to Zuma’s Cabinet as minister in the presidency responsible for monitoring and evaluation in 2009. He became public service minister last year.

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