De Klerk saddened by Kriel's death

Johannesburg - Former president FW De Klerk expressed sadness at the death of Hernus Kriel, the first premier of the Western Cape after the the 1994 elections. 

"He was a valued colleague who made a significant contribution as minister of law and order during the difficult years when we were negotiating our new non-racial Constitution," De Klerk said in a statement.

"He subsequently had the distinction of serving as the first premier of the Western Cape after the April 1994 elections."

Kriel died on Sunday at the age of 73.

De Klerk sent his and his wife Elita's condolences to Kriel's family and friends.

Former finance minister, Barend du Plessis, told Netwerk24 that Kriel had been bedridden and had been in a care facility in Panorama, Cape Town, for about a year.

His condition reportedly worsened on Saturday.

Du Plessis did not want to reveal the exact circumstances of Kriel's death without the permission of his family, but said he had suffered different complicated illnesses.

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