ANC flag flies at Lutchmee memorial service

2008-09-11 00:00

ANC stalwart Lutchmee Chetty was imprisoned in the passive resistance campaign in 1946. Before she died a year ago at the age of 83, she left a request that her coffin be draped in the ANC flag and that her funeral notice had to state that she was a long-standing member of the party. Her family were not able to get the flag, but they made amends this weekend when they held her one-year memorial service.

The Pietermaritzburg Association For the Aged (Pafta) Hall in Deccan Road was decked in black, green and gold and a highlight for the family was the large number of ANC dignitaries who responded to their invitation and attended the ceremony.

For newly-elected ANC treasurer in the region, Alpha Shelembe, the Hindu prayer service interspersed with talks of service to humanity and freedom songs sung in Tamil was a reminder of how much people share in common in South Africa.

“There is always an emphasis on our differences and when you attend functions like this, you realise how much we share in common. It was because of the vision and sacrifices of people like Mrs Chetty that we have our freedom today,” he said.

uMgungundlovu Mayor Yusuf Bhamjee explained the context of the passive resistance campaign, when protestors accepted going to jail in their fight against an act promulgated by the government for Indians to live in separate areas.

Bhamjee said that Chetty was 21 years’ old when she was imprisoned and the campaign had started four years earlier, which meant that she must have been 16 years’ old when she started attending political education classes run by the congress movement.

Even after her imprisonment, she never gave up and continued to support protests and campaigns for South Africa’s freedom.

“The family has told us how she would put on her sari and go to support one or other cause. She always talked about the struggle and had described her joy at being able to vote for the ANC in 1994.”

Bhamjee called on those present to preserve Chetty’s legacy and what she stood for — a free, non-racial democratic South Africa.

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.