JOHANNESBURG, September 5 – The KwaZulu-Natal Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (Cogta) MEC, Nomusa Dube-Ncube, on Tuesday added her voice to the growing list of tributes for uMzimkhulu Municipality Councillor, Sindiso Magaqa.
The former African National Congress Youth League (ANCYL) secretary general, who was hospitalised in July after he and two other colleagues were shot at several times by unknown assailants, succumbed to his injuries on Monday.
Dube-Ncube described the sudden death of the Magaqa “as a crippling blow to the sphere of local government and a time for a united action to end the impunity of killers who have spilled too much blood of local government representatives in our province”.
She said Magaqa was one of the “youngest and rising” local government leaders.
He was one of the three uMzimkhulu Councillors shot at by unknown assailants while returning from a meeting. The trio sustained serious injuries after the attackers unleashed a hail of bullets at their car.
She said after meeting Community Safety and Liaison MEC, Mxolisi Kaunda, that they urged the police to work around the clock to ensure that perpetrators of this heinous crime are brought to book.
Dube-Ncube said KZN Cogta had “long voiced its concerns” about the increase in attacks on local government representatives. The department has described these violent incidents as a dangerous trigger that could plunge municipalities into chaos and a state of ungovernability.
“The loss of such a young and energetic community leader is indeed a grievous loss. The sphere of local government lost one of the most zealous and determined public servants who dedicated his short span of life to the cause of bettering his community,” said Dube-Ncube.
“His devotion to serving the community at the coalface of service delivery he exemplified, is a message to young people that they must dedicate themselves to making a difference where it matters the most.
“We extend heartfelt sympathy, thoughts, and prayers to the family of Councilor Sindiso Magaqa, his friends, relatives, and Comrades.”
Earlier the ANCYL said it was “shocked and saddened” by passing away of its former secretary general
” … we had hoped that Cde Sindiso was going to recover. There are many leaders who have passed on, particularly from KwaZulu Natal, because of inter and intra political differences. We call for political tolerance in the province. We call on the Ministry of Police and State Security to help arrest this situation which has become a norm in KZN,” said Mlondi Mkhize, the ANCYL national spokesperson.
The Democratic Alliance (DA) sent its “deepest condolences” to the family Magaqa. DA KZN Leader Zwakele Mncwango asked: “How many more must die before ANC appears before Commission?”
“I personally met Sindiso through Youth Parliament in 2006 and found him to be a brave young person who stood for what he believed in,” Mkhize said.
“The political killings in KZN continue to rob our province of young people with a bright future. We have placed our hope on the Moerane Commission to give frame work on possible interventions that may be used to end this bloodshed.”
He said the passing of Magaqa will not just affect the ANC, but it will bring instability in uMzimkhulu which will translate in delays in service delivery.
“We call on the real leaders in the ANC to put an end to this slaughter. As the DA, we offer condolences to Magaqa’ s family during this tragic and sad time. May justice be served by finding and arresting those responsible for his death.”
The Congress of South African Trade Unions (Cosatu) said Magaqa will be remembered as a loyal and a forthright cadre of the movement, who had served the ANC with integrity and never wavered in his fight for social justice.
“He left an indelible mark as a young leader. He was a born leader and did not need to hold a position or have a title to serve both his organisation and his community,” said Sizwe Pamla, Cosatu national spokesperson.
“The ANC has lost a loyal cadre and an independent thinker. The people of Umzimkhulu and Ibis, in particular, have lost a beloved son, who championed social justice and economic transformation.
“We hope that his death will spur the government at national, and provincial level to attend to the ongoing political assassinations in KZN. The spate of political killings in the province has reached crisis levels and a solution is needed soon. We shall forever remain indebted to him for his contribution in championing economic transformation without fear or favour.”
Cosatu also sent condolences to family and friends of the slain councillor.
Former ANC Youth League secretary general Sindiso Magaqa died on Monday, following a shooting incident in July, the African National Congress said.
“It is with grave sadness that the African National Congress has received the news of the passing on of a young lion and one of our movement’s most brave and fearless fighters, Comrade Sindiso Magaqa. Comrade Magaqa succumbed to injuries sustained in a shooting incident in July and passed away earlier today,” the ruling party said in a statement.
“Comrade Magaqa’s life was testament to the abiding belief he had that the cause of the people shall triumph. He lived his life boldly and courageously, standing true to his convictions, in even the most trying times. He will forever be remembered as a gentle soul and a fearless fighter. His contribution to the struggles of youth and South Africans in general for economic freedom will never be forgotten.
“He leaves behind his unfinished life’s work and we trust it calls upon the current generation of youth and youth activists to pick up his fallen spear and continue the mission for the realization of economic freedom in our lifetime.”
On July 13, three ANC councillors of the uMzimkhulu municipality in KwaZulu-Natal were shot while they were at a local shop together. The three councillors, PR councillor Magaqa, ward 11 councillor Nonsikelelo Mafa ,and ward 16 councillor Jabu Mzizi, were shot outside a general dealer in the Ibisi area. The shootings followed the killings of three other councillors in the area this year.
On July 14, the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (known as the Hawks) announced it had set up a special task team to probe the shooting. At the time, Hawks spokesperson Hangwani Mulaudzi said they sustained multiple gunshot wounds and they were taken to hospital for medical attention.
Magaqa was the ANCYL secretary general under then leader Julius Malema before the league was disbanded in 2012.
On Monday, the ANC said that Magaqa was part of a generation of young people in the ANC who fought tirelessly for the realisation of the vision of economic freedom.
The ruling party said Magaqa was a “true product of the revolutionary movement” who served with diligence and distinction in the Council and as Member of the Mayoral Committee (MMC) at the time of his passing.
“The African National Congress sends its deepest condolences to Comrade Sindiso Magaqa’s family. May they find solace in the knowledge that we painfully share their loss and thank them for having borrowed the ANC and the country this incomparable son of the soil.”
The National Freedom Party (NFP) said it was “deeply disturbed and concerned about the ongoing killings” in KwaZulu-Natal and extended their condolences to Magaqa’s family and friends.
“Our people are living in constant fear of being caught in the cross fire of what has become normalized in our society as ” political killings” amongst ANC members targeting each other,” spokesperson Sabelo Sigudu said.
“This cannot be left to go on unchallenged. It’s high time that law enforcement authorities reclaimed that province and bring these killings to end and protect our people from living in fear.”
The NFP called on Police Minister Fikile Mbalula to put an end the killings and bring those responsible to justice.
“It’s high time that government Minister’s focus on what they are paid to do – service our people instead of focusing on smearing each other in public over scandals whilst our people live in constant fear every day of been caught in between firing lines” Sigudu said.
Furthermore, Former ANC Youth League secretary general Sindiso Magaqa was a fearless and indomitable lion who made an indelible mark, the African National Congress (ANC) in KwaZulu-Natal said on Monday.
“He was a fearless and indomitable lion who grew up from the ranks of our movement and made an indelible mark within and beyond the borders of our province… The ANC has lost a dependable, disciplined and committed servant of the masses of our people,” the ANCKZN said in a statement.
Magaqa, who died on Monday, following a shooting incident in July, undertook his tasks with distinction, the party said.
“He fell in the cause of service to his people which he did without any demand for recognition nor expecting material rewards. We accept with the greatest pain and sorrow the dictates of fate that today, 4th September 2017, we have to send our heartfelt and deepest condolences to the family of comrade Magaqa.”
The party said that Magaqa’s death was a “staggering blow” to the ANC and will be mostly intensely felt by those in the Umzimkhulu Local Municipality.
– African News Agency (ANA)