Parliament - Deputy Minister of Mineral Resources and Energy Bavelile Hlongwa died in a car crash on the N1 from Polokwane on Friday, her department said.
The department's director-general did not provide details but said in a statement: "It is with great sadness to inform you about the sudden death of Bavelile Hlongwa. She died in an accident today [Friday], September 13 2019. Details to be made available as time progresses.
"May her soul rest in peace."
President Cyril Ramaphosa also expressed his condolences to the family, friends and colleagues of Deputy Minister Hlongwa, as well as the stakeholders in business, labour and community with whom she engaged in the mining sector.
The president also expressed his condolences to the families of the four people who died with the Deputy Minister on scene while attempting to assist the passengers involved in another incident.
“The death of Deputy Minister Hlongwa is a devastating, untimely loss of a talented young leader who, alongside Minister Gwede Mantashe, was playing an important and dynamic role in an important sector of our economy,” said Ramaphosa.
Hlongwa was appointed as Deputy Minister of Mineral Resources and Energy with effect from 30 May 2019. Prior to her appointment she served as Executive Deputy Chairperson of the National Youth Development Agency.
She studied at the University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN) Howard College where she obtained her Bachelors of Science Degree in Chemical Engineering. She started her career at Shell Downstream SA.
The Presidency said Hlongwa would be honoured with an Official Funeral Category 2 and that the national flag shall fly at half-mast at every flag station in the country until she is laid to rest.