The ANC has suffered the loss of two of its Members of Parliament in recent weeks. On Sunday 05 March, the party learnt of the the passing of Fezeka Loliwe, who was an ANC MP and served as the Chairperson of the Portfolio Committee on Labour.
According to reports, Loliwe died in a fatal road accident near the Fort Hare University in Alice, Eastern Cape. It is reported that Loliwe was in the province to perform her constituency duties in Fort Beaufort. According to a statement issued on Monday afternoon, Parliament’s Presiding Officers, Speaker Baleka Mbete of the National Assembly (NA) and Chairperson Thandi Modise of the National Council of Provinces (NCOP), expressed their shock and disbelief at the untimely passing of one of their own. “Parliament wishes to express its sincere condolences to the family, friends, comrades and colleagues of MP Loliwe, whose passing has robbed parliament and the people of South Africa of a remarkable, humble and dedicated public representative who always went beyond the call of duty in the fulfilment of her parliamentary responsibilities. No amount of words and messages of sympathy can take away the pain her family, friends and comrades are going through at this dark hour. However, we hope and pray that her family will find solace in the knowledge that parliament and the nation have lost a great human being, a foremost legislator and a diligent public representative,” the statement issued read.
In February, Beatrice Ngcobo, another ANC MP who served as Deputy Chair for Community on Gender Equality, died following complications after an operation she had undergone earlier on in the month.
Ngcobo was also a Disability Rights Activist for Disabled People SA. She served as a Member of Parliament since 2004, until her death. Chief Whip of the ANC, Jackson Mthembu, described both the deceased as exemplary leaders of the party and went on to say that their deaths were indeed a loss for the party, particularly in the time of transition it is now finding itself in.