Solomon Mahlangu’s tombstone unveiled

Executive chairperson of National Youth Development Agency Sifiiso Mtsweni standing next to the newly revamped tombstone of the late struggle hero Solomon Mahlangu.

The newly-revamped tombstone of late struggle icon Solomon Kalushi Mahlangu has been unveiled at the Mamelodi West cemetery on Tuesday.

The Mahlangu family was joined by correctional services deputy minister Thabang Makwetla, national youth development agency, traditional leaders, Cosas, ANC members and the Mamelodi community to unveil the tombstone.

Youth agency chairperson Sifiiso Mtsweni said the aim of revamping the tombstone was for young people to see and learn what Solomon Mahlangu had done for South Africa.

Mtsweni said when NYDA visited the family in April to celebrate his life, a promise was made that the tombstone would be revamped. “I am happy to announce that we kept our promise.”

He said, as the struggle icon deserved respect, revamping the tombstone and turning his grave site into a monument was a sign of respect.

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Solomon Mahlangu, from Mamelodi West section C2, joined the ANC in 1976 and soon left the country to train as an uMkhonto weSizwe soldier in Angola and Mozambique.

Upon his return to South Africa, he was executed by the apartheid regime for being part of a failed attempt by the ANC to smuggle weapons into the country.

He was hanged in 1979 at the Pretoria Central prison.

Family spokesperson Gideon Mahlangu said it was a day to celebrate the life of his uncle and the sacrifice he made for the country.

“The young people of this country must know that this democracy was born out of a great sacrifice by brave young freedom fighters like Solomon Mahlangu.

“Solomon became the source of the inspiration to students. He was a symbol of hope to many students,” said Gideon thanking those who attended the unveiling ceremony.

Makwetla said Solomon Mahlangu deserved respect.

“Solomon Mahlangu has shown bravery in fighting for this country and most importantly not forgetting his mother, Martha Mahlangu, who became a leader of all women and mothers of this country.”

The unveiling ceremony was followed by a memorial lecture at Mamelodi West community hall.

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  AUTHOR
Stephen Selaluke
Mamelodi journalist

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