Parliament mourns deaths of former MPs

2018-10-13 20:18
Former minister Pik Botha. (File)

Former minister Pik Botha. (File)

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Parliament sent condolences for the loss of two current and two former MPs in a joint statement on Saturday.

Former members of Parliament Alpheus Mokabhe Maziya died on Tuesday October 9, and Pik Botha on October 12.

Former MP Johannah Segale-Diswai died on September 21 and they also received the news of the death of unionist and former MP Eric "Stalin" Mtshali.

In a joint statement, Speaker of the National Assembly Baleka Mbete and chairperson of the National Council of Provinces, (NCOP) Thandi Modise paid tribute to their work and extended condolences to their families and friends.

Maziya served in various roles as a member of the ANC in the National Assembly from November 2009 till May 2014. 

These roles included being an alternate member of the portfolio committee on defence and military veterans, alternate member at the defence joint committees, alternate member of the ad hoc Committee on General Intelligence Laws Amendment Bill and Whip until May 6, 2014.

Segale-Diswai, who died after a short illness, served in various portfolio committees between 2009 and 2014 as a member of Parliament in the National Assembly.  

These included being a member of the portfolio committee on co-operative governance and traditional affairs, the joint committee on HIV and Aids, a committee member on health, and a member of the ad hoc committee on coordinated oversight on service delivery.  

A the time of her death she was the ANC Women's League's chairperson in the Bojanala Region and advanced women's rights and empowerment.

Mtshali joined the liberation movement in KwaZulu-Natal at a young age, serving first as a unionist who mobilised organised labour to protest against apartheid.

He became a member of the South African Communist Party, the ANC and then one of the founding members of its military wing, Umkhonto We Sizwe (MK).

He was chief of personnel under Moses Kotane and JB Marks. Along with Chris Hani, Benson Ntsele and Don Nangu, Mtshali founded Dawn, the weekly MK journal. In 2015 he was honoured with the Order of Mendi for Bravery in Silver by former President Jacob Zuma. 

"In Mr Mtshali's passing South Africa has lost one of the most outstanding and fierce warriors for social justice, equality, freedom, democracy and human rights. We pay tribute to this gallant revolutionary who has made immense contribution to the liberation we enjoy today," the statement said.

The presiding officers described Botha in an earlier statement as a man who was among apartheid leaders who got colleagues to accept the inevitability of change.

He was amongst apartheid era leaders who led mindset change amongst proponents of apartheid to accept the inevitability of change and played part in the transition to the new South Africa," said a joint statement from Parliament's presiding officers.

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