Condolences pour in for ANC KZN spokesperson Ricardo Mthembu
Durban - DA KZN leader Zwakele Mncwango has described the death of ANC KZN spokesperson Ricardo Mthembu as a sad day for the province.
Mthembu died after Covid-19 complications on Wednesday morning. He had spent several days in the intensive care unit in a Ballito hospital, on the north coast of the province.
Mthembu, who was formerly mayor of KwaDukuza Municipality and ANC regional chairperson, had been appointed as the party’s provincial spokesperson in August 2019, replacing Nomagugu Simelane-Zulu who was appointed KZN Health MEC following last year’s national and provincial elections held in May.
“Today is a sad day in our province, KwaZulu-Natal, Covid-19 is the enemy as we have lost one of the leaders we served with in the provincial legislature.
“On behalf of the DA in KZN I would like to pass our condolences to the family of honourable Ricardo Mthembu and also pass our condolences to his political family, the ANC.
“Mvelase (Mthembu's clan name) was one of the selfless leaders we had in our province, our province has suffered a huge loss in Mvelase’s passing and all we can say now is rest in peace Mvelase,” Mncwango said.
Mthembu was 50 at his time of death on Wednesday.
He was appointed spokesperson last year after he left his position as mayor of KwaDukuza Municipality, a role he had held for eight years. He had widely been expected to be deployed as an MEC, but was instead deployed as a member of the provincial legislature.
In May 2018, Mthembu had been elected for a third successive time as chairperson of the ANC’s KwaDukuza Region (now General Gizenga Mpanza) before vacating that seat after his deployment to the provincial legislature after the May 2019 elections.
While mayor of KwaDukuza in September 2018, Mthembu was honoured with an honorary Doctorate of Theology by the Independent Theological Institute.
Mthembu was elected onto the KZN provincial executive committee in July 2019 at the party’s provincial conference and was also selected to form part of the ANC’s provincial working committee.
On social media, people responded to the news of his death.
The dark cloud of death is hanging over our region, ILembe . Rest In Peace Ricardo Mthembu.— Zakhele Gumede (@zakheleg) July 8, 2020
Yho The death of Ricardo Mthembu has messed me up big time. Ayi no Covid sekwanele😥— Mzilikazi (@ChiefMzilikazi) July 8, 2020
Rest In Peace 😔💔— LUNGI NAIDOO (@LungiNaidoo) July 8, 2020
Former Mayor of Kwadukuza Municipality Ricardo Mthembu.
Lala ngoxolo 🙏🏽😔 pic.twitter.com/PCgN1sEiUe