President Cyril Ramaphosa mourns Joburg Mayor Jolidee Matongo
President Cyril Ramaphosa of South Africa has paid respect to the next mayor of Johannesburg, who died in a vehicle accident at the age of 46.
Before the automobile tragedy, Jolidee Matongo was campaigning alongside Mr Ramaphosa.
Details are few, however photographs of a badly smashed up car’s front have surfaced in local media.
Mr Matongo took office as mayor on August 10th, after his predecessor died of Covid complications.
He was the son of a Zimbabwean migrant, according to local media, and had been a political activist in South Africa since he was 13 years old, battling against apartheid, a legalized system of racism in force at the time.
He was a member of the ruling African National Congress (ANC), and he was slated to lead the party’s campaign to win Johannesburg, South Africa’s commercial city, in local government elections on November 1st.
In his tribute to the mayor, President Ramaphosa said: “It is hard to comprehend this tragedy, given the vitality and passion with which Mayor Matongo interacted with me and residents of Soweto so shortly before his death.
“Nothing could prepare any of us for this sudden loss, which has deprived our nation’s economic centre of its second executive mayor in two months.”
Herman Mashaba, the former mayor of Johannesburg and the leader of the opposition ActionSA party, said he and Mr Matongo had severe political disagreements, but he will always “cherish” their “special connection.”