Johannesburg mayor killed in car accident

Published September 20, 2021
A file photo of Johannesburg Mayor Jolidee Matongo. — Photo courtesy Jolidee Matongo Twitter
A file photo of Johannesburg Mayor Jolidee Matongo. — Photo courtesy Jolidee Matongo Twitter

JOHANNESBURG: The mayor of Johannesburg was killed in a car accident as he returned from campaigning with South Africa’s president on Saturday, just over a month after being elected, his office said in a statement.

Jolidee Matongo, 46, was returning from a voter registration drive in Soweto township ahead of local elections when the accident happened.

“It is hard to comprehend this tragedy, given the vitality and passion with which Mayor Matongo interacted with me and residents of Soweto so shortly before his death,” President Cyril Ramaphosa said in a tweet.

“Nothing could prepare any of us for this sudden loss, which has deprived our nation’s economic centre of its second Executive Mayor in two months.”

Matongo’s predecessor died from Covid-19 complications in July, and Matongo was elected on August 10. Gauteng province premier David Makhura, who was also at the Soweto voter registration drive, said the news had left him “shocked and shattered”.

“(Matongo) executed his duties with a cool and calm demeanour and remained committed to selflessly serving the citizens of Johannesburg,” he added.

Photos posted on social media by Ramaphosa and Matongo himself from earlier in the afternoon showed the two men walking around Soweto talking to residents, Matongo dressed in a bright yellow tracksuit with the African National Congress party’s logo on it.

Matongo was born in Soweto, according to the City of Johannesburg’s website, and became a member of the ANC Youth League after taking up student politics at the age of 13.

Matongo’s office said more details on the accident would be released “in due time”.

Published in Dawn, September 20th, 2021

Opinion

Editorial

The fall guy
Updated 18 Aug, 2022

The fall guy

Maryam’s public distancing from Miftah over recent fuel price hike is quite uncalled for.
Never-ending scourge
18 Aug, 2022

Never-ending scourge

POLIO eradication efforts in the country appear to have suddenly taken a giant leap backwards. A day after...
Frozen Afghan funds
18 Aug, 2022

Frozen Afghan funds

WITH Afghanistan facing a humanitarian catastrophe and economic collapse, the American decision to not release ...
No end to hostility
Updated 17 Aug, 2022

No end to hostility

It is time for all parties to rise above petty tactics and hostilities for political gains and pull country back from brink.
Deadly accidents
17 Aug, 2022

Deadly accidents

TWO horrific accidents on Tuesday, which resulted in high death tolls, illustrate the dangers people face while ...
New banknote
17 Aug, 2022

New banknote

PAKISTAN has a new currency note to mark the diamond jubilee of independence. The 75-rupee banknote, issued by the...