African National Congress veteran and former High Commissioner to Canada Ambassador Billy Modise has died at the Unitas Hospital in Pretoria on Thursday. The 88 year-old is best remembered for his work in building the anti-apartheid movement in the Nordic countries in the 1960s.
He joined the ANC in 1955 as a young student at Fort Hare University, and after securing a scholarship to study medicine in Sweden he spent the next 30 years outside South Africa. He working for the UN and later as the ANC’s chief representative in Stockholm until the party’s unbanning in 1990.
In democratic South Africa Modise was appointed South Africa’s high commissioner to Canada in 1995. He ended his career as the chief of state protocol in the Presidency in 2006.
Amongst many accolades Modise recieved was the Order of Luthuli – Silver Class from former President Thabo Mbeki.