Thu, 28 May 2020

Deputy Minister of Mineral Resources and Energy, Bavelile Hlongwa died the way she lived; helping people. President Cyril Ramaphosa said at her funeral in KwaZulu-Natal on Saturday.

Delivering his eulogy at the Inkosi Albert Luthuli International Convention Centre in Durban, Ramaphosa paid tribute to the 38-year-old Hlongwa who was appointed to his cabinet in May this year.

""She lost her life in a tragic accident trying to save others, as she reached out to people involved in another accident, a gesture that on its own give us a moment to reflect on her character which one can only describe as a substantial demonstration of ubuntu," Ramaphosa said.

READ | 'A young tree has fallen' - Ramaphosa on Bavelile Hlongwa's death

"On behalf of our government and the people of South Africa, I once more convey our deepest condolences to the Hlongwa family and relatives over the tragic and untimely loss of their daughter, sister and mother, to her friends and comrades, and to the entire nation, which is still reeling from the shock of this loss."

Ramaphosa said the good Samaritan in her blinded her to the treacherous circumstances that night as she stopped to help those who were in need.

"As in life, Bavelile passed away in service to the people."

"As a result of her untimely death we lost a captivating glimpse of the future leadership of our country and movement."

"Our continent, Africa has been robbed of a promising star."

Hlongwa died in a car crash on the N1 from Polokwane on September 13 after she stopped to assist at another accident scene. Hlongwa and four other people were run over and killed by a truck.

Ramaphosa also used the occasion to pay his condolences to the families of all the people who died in the accident.

"In the same spirit, as government we convey our heartfelt condolences to the families of the people who lost their lives in the accident that night," Ramaphosa said.

"These are the families of Kekana in Hammanskraal and Malaka in Soshanguve, who also lost their young sons, Katlego and Sipho, as well as those others who sustained injuries in that calamity."

"This week, on Thursday, we dispatched government officials to visit these families and convey our message of compassion and support."

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