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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
20 APRIL 2023
Late Comrade Chris Matlhaku
The African National Congress (ANC) mourns the passing of a revolutionary, a freedom fighter, internationalist and one of the finest intellectuals produced by our liberation movement.
We add our collective voice by exclaiming that the death of Comrade Chris Matlhaku has dealt a devastating blow to the liberation movement by robbing us of one its best and selfless cadres.
Comrade Chris was elected as Central Committee Member of the South African Communist Party (SACP) at its 15th National Congress held 13 to 16 July 2022. He served in a full-time capacity as SACP Secretary for International Relations. Comrade Chris was a committed revolutionary who served both the ANC and SACP until his last breath.
The whole country and the entire democratic movement has lost a dedicated and loyal servant. Comrade Chris joined the struggle at a very tender age when it was extremely dangerous to do so. He consciously chose to risk his life and sacrifice his youth in pursuit of the liberation struggle.
As a student and youth activist, he personified the spirit of “no compromise and no surrender”. He was a humble, yet fierce fighter against the injustices of the apartheid regime.
Comrade Chris is an unsung hero of our struggle whose real contribution to our freedom is still to be fully acknowledged and documented. His name will be mentioned alongside those of the best sons and daughters of our country who passed on with dignity and hounor after making an outstanding contribution to our liberation.
As a true revolutionary and a patriot, Comrade Chris’ contribution to the struggle for liberation was not aimed at seeking personal glory and fame. It was not motivated by the pursuit of personal ambition, self-interest and/or lust for power and self-privilege.
His was a genuine commitment to build for our people a future that is qualitatively better than our ugly past.
All freedom-loving people of our country will sorely miss his intellectual sharpness, political maturity and passionate commitment to the plight and aspirations of the working class.
As the Alliance, we must make a solemn commitment never to betray the cause for which he fought all his life. In his honour and in taking forward his legacy, we must continue to work tirelessly towards the unity and renewal of our movement.
We must uproot corruption and factionalism wherever they may rear their ugly heads. Consistent with the revolutionary spirit of Comrade Chris, we must do all of these things not to seek personal glory or popularity, but as part of our revolutionary duty to defend the gains of the 1994 democratic breakthrough.
The ANC urges all its cadres, especially young people, to emulate the revolutionary example of selfless service, discipline and loyalty that was displayed by this distinguished son of the soil.
The ANC conveys its heartfelt condolences to his family, comrades, and the entire mass democratic movement. We wish them strength and fortitude during this difficult time.
We hope that the family will find comfort in the knowledge that they are not the only ones who have lost a loved one. To the family, we wish to say that we are with you in your difficult hour.
Your pain is the ANC’s pain. The whole nation shares in your grief.
May his revolutionary soul find eternal peace.
ISSUED BY THE AFRICAN NATIONAL CONGRESS.
Mahlengi Bhengu-Motsiri National Spokesperson Tel: 076 891 5420
Media Relations Amos Phago
Tel: 076 750 6961