DURBAN – The African National Congress in KwaZulu-Natal on Sunday expressed shock and distress at the murder of ANC Harry Gwala regional deputy secretary Khaya Thobela by unknown gunmen.
Thobela was shot several times as he arrived at his home in Emfundweni, ward 13 in Umzimkhulu on Thursday evening, KwaZulu-Natal ANC provincial spokesperson Mdumiseni Ntuli said.
He was rushed to hospital in a critical condition but succumbed to his wounds in the early hours of Sunday. The ANC had lost a great leader who had been committed to serving the people. Thobela was a “judicious leader” who served with great diligence and commitment in the Umzimkhulu local municipality as the speaker, Ntuli said.
Thobela’s murder was a serious setback for the ANC. Thobela was also an active member and a leader of the South African Democratic Teachers’ Union.
“While leading Sadtu he then became an activist and leader of the Congress of South African Trade Unions (Cosatu) at various levels. His political orientation made him to also associate himself with South African Community Party of which he also led at various levels in the region,” Ntuli said.
Thobela resigned as a teacher while he was a deputy principal in Ezinqolweni to take up a full-time position as a councillor in 2011 when the ANC deployed him as speaker in the Umzimkhulu local municipality.
The ANC called on police to swiftly investigate “this atrocious killing” and bring the perpetrators to book, as their action had robbed the people of Umzimkhulu, the Harry Gwala region, and the province of a dynamic leader.
The ANC sent its deepest condolences to Thobela’s family, cadres, friends, and relatives. “We will miss his leadership strength, discipline, bravery, and selflessness. We salute him as the great leader of our movement and a humble servant of the people who made many sacrifices in the transformation of the local government,” Ntuli said.
African News Agency