Acting President pays tribute to the late media personality, Mr Xolani Gwala
Acting President Ms Angie Motshekga has, on behalf of President Cyril Ramaphosa, expressed sadness at the passing away of respected broadcaster and public speaker Mr Xolani Gwala.
Mr Gwala has passed away at the age of 44, following an extended illness.
President Ramaphosa learnt of Mr Gwala’s passing while en route today, Friday 01 November 2019, to Yokohama in Japan.
Mr Gwala, who last served as a senior host on Talk Radio 702, established his reputation as a media professional during a career that took him from newsreader on Ukhozi FM to P4 Radio in KwaZulu-Natal in the mid-1990s, to various radio and television platforms at the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC).
A decade ago he was appointed news editor at a radio station based in Ramallah in the Palestinian territory.
President Ramaphosa has extended heartfelt condolences to Mr Gwala’s family, friends and colleagues in the media fraternity in South Africa and abroad.
The President said: We have lost a youthful veteran in an important sector in our country. As a professional who qualified in the mid-1990s, Xolani Gwala carried with him the values of our transition to democracy � the values of listening and being open to views that conflict with or offend your own, and a focus on solutions.
While he became a prominent public figure, he never placed himself ahead of the interests and needs of large numbers of South Africans who trusted his platforms as safe spaces for dialogue and engagement.
He never shied away from tough questions and from holding people in public office to account, but he never let his cross-examination impugn the dignity of anyone with whom he interacted.
At the same time, he understood that public education was not only about the cut and thrust of debate but also about unpacking, in easily understandable terms, the attributes of our democracy and the development of our economy.
We will miss his voice, his insight and his love for our country but we will remain grateful that he gave a voice to thousands of South Africans who shared their joys and frustrations in life on the many platforms Xolani commanded with excellence.
Source: Government of South Africa