It is with deep sorrow and sadness to announce that Minister in the Presidency, Jackson Mthembu has passed on from Covid-19 related complications.

President Cyril Ramaphosa has confirmed that Mthembu passed away earlier today. The minister was 62 years old.

Jackson Mthembu was a much loved politician in South Africa. He was also a close ally of President Cyril Ramaphosa.

Mthembu fought for freedom in South Africa and he went out of his way to make sure that media in particular is treated well and with respect.

The African National Congress (ANC) will hold a media briefing today and ANC top leadership is expected to speak at the briefing.

Mthembu was an exemplary leader, an activist, life long champion of freedom and democracy thus his passing leaves South Africa in deep mourning.

Mthembu was  born in 1958 in Witbank, Mpumalanga Province. He was a parliamentarian for the ANC, previously serving as a Chief Whip for the ruling party in Parliament.

At one point he was a critic of former President Jacob Zuma when he was leading the country. He also deliberately defied President Jacob Zuma at the time.