Former DA MP Dene Smuts dies

2016-04-22 11:20
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Johannesburg - Former Democratic Alliance MP Dene Smuts has died, the party's federal executive said on Friday morning. 

"Dene Smuts will be remembered as a truly great parliamentarian, who stood unswervingly for a cause far bigger than her own personal advancement - an enduring set of principles and beliefs," the party said in a statement.

"Her service to a democratic South Africa has been profound, and we mourn her loss. We convey our deepest condolences to her family."

Details on the cause of her death were not immediately available. 

Smuts served in Parliament for 20 years, from 1989 to 2009. Prior to that, she was a journalist, editor and author. 

She served as the DA’s spokesperson on home affairs, communications, and justice and constitutional development. 

"Whether it was in her work on the Truth and Reconciliation Commission legislation, on a modern communications policy, on working for the independence of the legal profession, or in her heroic work on the Protection of State Information Bill, Dene always worked incredibly hard and with total devotion to the Constitution and the principles it enshrines," the party said. 

Current and former DA leaders tweeted their condolences. 

Party chief whip John Steenhuisen wrote: "Really sad about passing of party stalwart and brilliant former MP, Dene Smuts. I learnt so much about legislation and constitution from her."

Former DA leader Tony Leon said: "Dene Smuts gone far too soon. Extraordinary colleague and woman of achievement and unflinching principle. RIP."

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