Glowing tributes for fallen deputy minister Hlongwa

Crash claims life of rising political star

By George Matlala

Tributes poured in for deceased deputy minister of mineral resources and energy Bavelile Hlongwa, who died in a major car crash last week Friday.

Mineral resources and energy minister Gwede Mantashe said Hlongwa’s death was an untimely end to a bright young prospect.

“With deep anguish, we wish to join the president and our country in conveying condolences to the family and loved ones of comrade Bavelile. As we commenced our term of office in the new administration of our government, we were beginning to gel as we considered ways in which we could deal with the challenges facing our ministry, and our country,” he said. Hlongwa, who joined government in May, was the executive deputy chairperson of the National Youth Development Agency before her elevation to the department.
President Cyril Ramaphosa expressed profound shock at the passing of Hlongwa, and also extended his condolences to the four people who
died with the deputy minister while attempting to assist the passengers involved in another incident.
“The death of deputy minister Hlongwa is a devastating, untimely loss of a talented young leader who, alongside minister Gwede Mantashe, was playing an important and dynamic role in an important sector of our economy,” said Ramaphosa.

The ANC in Gauteng said “we dip our heads in mourning the tragic passing of comrade Bavelile Hlongwa”.

The service is currently underway at the Inkosi Albert Luthuli International Convention Center in Durban.


She started her career at Shell Downstream SA, having studied at the University of KwaZulu- Natal Howard College campus, where she obtained her BSc degree in chemical engineering.


Hlongwa was honoured with a category 2 official funeral in line with government’s state, official and provincial funeral policy today. The president also directed that the national flag be flown at halfmast at every flag station in the country until Hlongwa was laid to rest.

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