- Mluleki George, regarded as a unifying figure in sport, has died.
- SAFA President Danny Jordaan said George's death was a terrible shock.
- He is understood to have contracted Covid-19.
Mluleki George, regarded as a unifying figure in sport, has died.
"I just got the news now. I was shocked," SA Football Association (SAFA) president Danny Jordaan told News24.
He said he and George had known each other for a "very very long time" and he credited him with being a great unifier in sport as South Africa emerged from a fractured past.
They also served as MPs.
"He was a tough nut," Jordaan said wistfully.
He added George had died as a result of contracting Covid-19.
This came after the deaths of Athletics SA's Leonard Chuene and former Kaizer Chiefs captain Ryder Mofokeng.
George was also a deputy defence minister.
He and former defence minister Mosiuoa Lekota were among a group of breakaway ANC stalwarts who astounded delegates at the Polokwane elective conference of the ANC, making public their intention to serve "divorce papers" on the party.
This was amid a struggle for power between former presidents Thabo Mbeki and Jacob Zuma.
They were among a group of prominent ANC heavyweights who left in support of Mbeki when Zuma ascended to the presidency of the party.
They resigned from the ANC shortly before their disciplinary hearing.
George went on to become the treasurer-general of the newly formed ANC breakaway the Congress of the People (Cope) in a life filled with achievements and firsts.
Jordaan said George died in East London.
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