As African National Congress (ANC) leaders including Gwede Mantashe come to terms with the passing of one their own, Jackson Mthembu’s colleagues have described him as a reliable ally who was always at the frontline when needed.
Mthembu contracted the coronavirus and passed away in hospital on Thursday. The 62-year-old was serving as a minister in the presidency and a National Executive Committee member of the ANC at the time of his death.
Mthembu’s death has left his comrades reeling, with several ANC leaders struggling to make sense of how COVID has robbed them of one of their shining stars.
The party’s national chairperson Gwede Mantashe, who had known Mthembu since the 80s, on Thursday said this was a great loss. “He (was) a reliable ally in any battle that we faced. We lose him in the movement, we lose him in government, Mpumalangawill lose him more, Witbankin particular.”