Obituary: MK Stalwart Mankehli Xaba

2011-06-22 00:00

A MEMBER of the Mkhonto weSizwe Veterans’ Association (MKVA), Mankehli Theodora Xaba, died of kidney failure in Middelburg Hospital, Mpumalanga, on Monday morning.

Xaba was the sister of ANC veteran Anton “Mfenendala” Xaba. Their family came from Sobantu.

Xaba was two months away from celebrating her 71st birthday.

Her granddaughter, Amanda Xaba, said she left Sobantu last week to visit her son Sibusiso, who lives in Middelburg, but she suffered kidney failure. They were told that she died there.

Amanda described her grandmother’s life as one of struggle until the end. “Even in her old age she was still part of the struggle as she was also a stalwart member of the ANC Women’s League.

“My grandmother sacrificed her son and daughter to the struggle when they left the country to join the ANC in exile because she believed in freedom.”

Xaba’s political interest was sparked by her brother, Mfenendala, who served time on Robben Island as a political prisoner, according to people who knew her well.

KwaZulu-Natal MEC for Social Development Dr Meshack Radebe, who yesterday visited the family, said Xaba was one of the people who were instrumental in shaping South Africa’s democracy.

“I would not be where I am today if it were not for people like her, because she fought for this country till she saw the dawn of a democratic state,” he said.

Radebe was accompanied by social workers to profile the Xaba family because none of the family members is employed. He said it is his department’s responsibility to ensure that it helps the family where it can.

“Struggle veterans like her are slowly leaving us, which teaches us to be strong and continue defending the principles of democracy that they believed in,” said Radebe.

He said the department will help the family with the funeral arrangements.

The ANC Moses Mabhida regional secretary, Super Zuma, said that as painful as it is to lose someone like Xaba, her life should be celebrated and she should be appreciated as a struggle stalwart who believed in freedom for all.

“She was a pillar of strength for us and she guided us when we needed advice about the Movement from an elderly person. We always knew we could count on her,” said Zuma.

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.