Denis Goldberg died at this Hout Bay home after battling cancer. File picture: African News Agency (ANA)
Denis Goldberg died at this Hout Bay home after battling cancer. File picture: African News Agency (ANA)

Condolences pour in for anti-apartheid activist Denis Goldberg

By Siviwe Feketha Time of article published Apr 30, 2020

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Johannesburg - Condolences continue to pour in for the late Rivonia trialist and anti-apartheid activist Denis Goldberg, who died on Wednesday night, aged 87.

The Nelson Mandela Foundation described Goldberg as a member of the generation of leadership, which shaped the country’s history in profound ways, through their relentless fight for liberation and as someone who challenged the direction our democracy was taking in later years, “initially critiquing the country’s macroeconomic policies and then challenging state capture during the years of cronyism and looting”.

The foundation’s chief executive Sello Hatang said they had known Goldberg through his close contact with Mandela, another Rivonia trialist, and through his participation in projects of social upliftment.

“He was our friend, always supportive, right to the end. We were delighted he was able to attend our events marking the 30th anniversary of Madiba’s release from prison and always a constructive critic of our work, with insight and that characteristic naughty sense of humour,” Hatang said.

Goldberg, who was imprisoned for 22 years, has been one of only two Rivonia trialists who remained alive, with ANC stalwart Andrew Mlangeni being the last one remaining.

The ANC also expressed sadness over the passing of Goldberg, who was the member of the party’s armed wing Umkhonto weSizwe (MK) and recipient of the ANC’s highest honour “Isithwalandwe, Seaparankwe”.

“Comrade Denis Goldberg, belonged to that illustrious generation of freedom fighters who were prepared to sacrifice all and lay down their lives in the struggle for liberation. This is the generation that understood that satisfaction in life comes from serving others. Theirs was a selfless commitment to the liberation of our country. They spared no effort in securing our liberation,” ANC secretary general Ace Magashule said.

The Oliver and Adelaide Tambo Foundation, The Steve Biko Foundation, The Ahmed Kathrada Foundation, Lawyers for Human Rights and other political parties also hailed Goldberg for his role in the fight for the country’s freedom. 

Political Bureau

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