Minister in the Presidency Jackson Mthembu Mthembu, 62, died on Thursday due to Covid-19-related complications. Picture: Jacques Naude/African News Agency(ANA)
Minister in the Presidency Jackson Mthembu Mthembu, 62, died on Thursday due to Covid-19-related complications. Picture: Jacques Naude/African News Agency(ANA)

'Mvelase was a man of ethical leadership, values and principles’

By Loyiso Sidimba Time of article published Jan 23, 2021

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Johannesburg - The June and Andrew Mlangeni Foundation on Saturday paid tribute to late Minister in the Presidency Jackson Mthembu, describing him as “a man of ethical leadership, values and principles”.

Mthembu, 62, died on Thursday due to Covid-19 related complications after being admitted to the Steve Biko Academic Hospital in Tshwane and later transferred to the Netcare Milpark Hospital in Johannesburg.

”Our foundation fully identifies with the values that he stood for – equality, justice, honesty and truthfulness. Mvelase [Mthembu’s clan name] was a man of ethical leadership, values and principles,” the late struggle stalwart and Rivonia Trialist’s foundation said.

According to the foundation’s chairperson and deputy women, youth and persons with disabilities minister Hlengiwe Mkhize, Mthembu publicly supported the establishment of the commission of inquiry into state capture chaired by Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo.

“He strongly believed that the commission was the highest commitment of our country to fight corruption by holding each accused person accountable for any corrupt practices,” Mkhize said.

On Friday, Justice Zondo expressed his shock and sadness at Mthembu’s death.

”Mthembu publicly supported the commission, cooperated with it and was due to testify before the commission in the next few weeks with regard to the time when he was the chief whip of the ANC in Parliament,” read the commission’s statement.

The commission also conveyed its regret that it would have to complete its work without the benefit of the contribution Mthembu would have made with his oral evidence.

Mkhize said in the 1980s Mlangeni, who died in 2001, worked with Mthembu at the SA Council of Churches, where the former ANC spokesperson was a media officer, and that the Mlangenis’ children considered him as one of their brothers.

President Cyril Ramaphosa will deliver the eulogy at Mthembu’s funeral in his hometown, Emalahleni (formerly Witbank) in Mpumalanga on Sunday.

Deputy President David Mabuza, meanwhile, will pay tribute to Mthembu at a memorial service on Monday.

Political Bureau

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