Government will host a memorial service for the late former Minister and High Commissioner, Dr Zola Skweyiya, on Wednesday, the Inter-Ministerial Committee (IMC) on State Funerals has announced.
In a statement on Sunday, Minister in the Presidency for Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation (DPME) and also chair of the IMC, Dr Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma, said the memorial would be held on Wednesday at a venue that is still to be confirmed.
Dr Skweyiya passed away on 11 April, aged 75, after a period of hospitalisation. He passed away just three days shy of his 76th birthday on 14 April.
“Dr Zola Skweyiya, a courageous fighter who fought for social justice in South Africa, played a pivotal role, in strengthening the foundational process and crafting the cornerstone of our democracy, the Constitution,” said Minister Dlamini Zuma.
Dr Skweyiya had served as Minister of Public Service and Administration from 1994 to 1999 under President Nelson Mandela.
He also served as Minister of Social Development between 1999 and 2009 during President Thabo Mbeki’s administration.
In 2009, Skweyiya was appointed as High Commissioner of South Africa.
On Friday, President Cyril Ramaphosa declared a Special official funeral, Category 1, for Dr Zola Skweyiya.
“The venue and time of the Memorial Service will be announced shortly. The funeral service will take place on the 21 April 2018 at CRC Church, Corner Lynnwood road and Solomon Mahlangu Drive, Pretoria.
“Our nation owes a great debt to the many selfless champions such as Zola Skweyiya for their contribution in the struggle for a just and equitable society,” said the Minister.
The IMC said further logistical details on the memorial service and funeral arrangements will be communicated soon.
A Special Official Funeral entails elements of military ceremonial honours and is declared, in line with the Presidency’s State, Official and Provincial Official Funeral Policy, for persons of extraordinary credentials specifically designated by the President of the Republic of South Africa.