President media statement:
President Cyril Ramaphosa has expressed his sadness at the passing away of Dr Zola Skweyiya – former Cabinet Minister and High Commissioner to the United Kingdom – and has extended condolences to the family, friends and comrades of Dr Skweyiya.
Dr Skweyiya has passed away at the age of 75 after a period of hospitalisation.
“Our thoughts, as colleagues and comrades, go out to the family and friends of Dr Skweyiya who served our country with great passion and distinction during his time in Cabinet and the diplomatic service. Dr Skweyiya’s endearing engagement and his contribution to our society – especially his role as the first Minister to lead the Public Service in a democratic South Africa – will be greatly missed and honoured,” President Ramaphosa said.
Dr Skweyiya served as Minister of the Public Service and Administration from 1994 to 1999 and later as Minister of Social Development before retiring as a Member of Parliament in 2009.
In the same year, Dr Skweyiya was appointed High Commissioner to the United Kingdom and Northern Ireland – a position that acknowledged the long period Dr Skweyiya had spent in exile during the apartheid era.
Details of memorial events will be communicated in due course.