President Cyril Ramaphosa has given permission for the late former Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Aziz Pahad to be accorded a special official funeral category 2.
Pahad, an anti-apartheid activist, died on Wednesday, September 27. Pahad, 82, will be buried on Saturday at the Westpark Cemetery.
According to the president, the SAPS will be responsible for providing ceremonial elements during the funeral service.
Following Pahad’s death, Ramaphosa paid tribute to the struggle stalwart, saying Pahad was one of the country’s longest-serving ministers in his portfolio.
Ramaphosa said the struggle veteran, who died just under two months after the death of his brother, Essop Pahad, in July, said Pahad played a significant role in educating the nation about international relations during the early stages of the country’s democratic dispensation.
“Aziz Pahad worked for our freedom during his decades in exile in the United Kingdom, Angola and Zambia – a period during which he played a diversity of roles including as a member of the ANC’s Revolutionary Council and the Political Military Committee and being part of the ANC negotiating team that secretly met representatives of the apartheid regime and also with leading members of the Afrikaner community.
“It was fitting that, in acknowledgement of his vast experience in international mobilisation against the apartheid regime, Aziz Pahad was appointed to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs at the dawn of our democracy and our reintegration into the global community,” said Ramaphosa.
Ramaphosa also described him as a consummate diplomat who preached justice and other noble ideals to all and sundry.
“Aziz Pahad was a consummate diplomat not only in the service of our country, but in support of causes for freedom and justice elsewhere in the world, notably advocating the plight of the Palestinian people.
“Endearing of disposition and fierce of principle, he represented our nation with passion and clarity and played a significant role in educating the nation of our early democracy about international relations and South Africa’s role, place and vision in a world which itself undergoing change at that time, ” added Ramaphosa