Former Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs Minister, Sicelo Shiceka. Photo: Bongiwe Mchunu

Former local government minister Sicelo Shiceka's death was a loss to society and the ANC, the ANC Youth League said in a statement on Tuesday.

“The ANCYL is saddened by the passing of (comrade) Shiceka who has served the ANC and Government as a cadre of the movement. Cde Shiceka has served selflessly at all times in his role both in Gauteng and at National level.

“The ANCYL is saddened by his passing as it is a loss both for society and the ANC,” said ANCYL spokeswoman Magdalene Moonsamy.

The league also conveyed condolences to his family and friends.

Shiceka died in St Mary's private hospital in Mthatha, in the Eastern Cape, on Monday morning, following a long illness.

Zuma removed him as a minister in October after Public Protector Thuli Madonsela found he had racked up over R1 million in travel costs for himself, his staff and friends, in violation of the executive ethics code.

This included a trip to Switzerland to see a girlfriend jailed on drug-related charges.

He continued serving the ANC as an MP, but had been on sick leave since February 2011. - Sapa