‘He died with his boots on’ - ANC hails Jackson Mthembu as a champion of the people

‘He died with his boots on’ - ANC hails Jackson Mthembu as a champion of the people

The African National Congress (ANC) has hailed the late Jackson Mthembu as a champion of equality and truth.  

energy war room cabinet announcement Jackson Mthembu

Mthembu died of Covid-19 related complications on Thursday, 10 days after he publicly confirmed he had tested positive for the virus.

He would have turned 63 in June.  

ANC deputy secretary-general Jesse Duarte described him as hardworking.

“For us who’ve lost a brother and a friend, this is a great loss. We’re still reeling from the shock. I think not all of us know how to process it yet but we’re trying hard,” she said.

“But he leaves a legacy of honesty and integrity and a legacy of deep value to us.”


The governing party held a briefing at Luthuli House on Thursday.

Duarte told the media that the loss of Mthembu was incalculable.  

“You’ve lost a person who’s loyal to the country, put the country first at all times, very loyal to the ANC, defended the ANC’s values at every turn and was able to bring to the NEC of the ANC a quality in the debates based on his knowledge and understanding of the people.

“Comrade Jackson wasn’t someone who lived in the cloud, he did interact with people therefore he understood what the challenges were for the people and could communicate them very articulately. He was very articulate and very considerate.”  

She added that his support for the ANC was unwavering.

“Comrade Jackson was not afraid of defending what was important to be defended and of raising issues that could be considered controversial by other people. He defended what was the truth, that was his bottom line.”

A stern Mthembu was often on the frontlines of government’s response to the Covid-19 pandemic.  

The ANC says his death is a cruel reminder that the virus doesn’t discriminate.

“We take away that Covid-19 has no respect for anyone, and it will take anyone away from us.”

Listen to Duarte below:

Listen to more news from Jacaranda
Jacaranda FM

Show's Stories