Tributes are pouring following the death of 84-year-old African National Congress (ANC) stalwart, Ivy Cikizwa Gcina.
The ANC in the Nelson Mandela Bay region has described her passing as a huge blow to the party, nationally.
Gcina joined the ANC Youth League in the 1950s and was active in the bus boycotts and protests against Bantu education.
She headed the women’s committee after the establishment of Port Elizabeth Black Civic Organisation (PEBCO) and was also elected the first chairperson of the Port Elizabeth Women’s Organisation (PEWO).
Mourners visited the Gcina home to pay tribute to the struggle veteran. They include ANC veterans such as Benson Fihla, Nceba Faku and Litho Suka. Mama Gcina also lost three of her sons in the struggle, two in combat and the third in exile. All of her sons were members of Umkhonto we Sizwe.
The ANC in the region says her legacy will never be forgotten. ANC regional Member Nceba Faku and ANCWL NEC member Nancy Sihlwayi talk about her contribution to the struggle for liberation.
“Her children all died in exile and were extremely vital in the struggle against the oppression, it’s a sad loss but she was eighty, her wisdom will never be forgotten,” says Faku.
“She has a passion for people, she wanted to change the lives of the people and women emancipation, she loved the ANC and ANCWL, it’s a sad loss to our movement,” says Sihlwayi.
Gcina leaves behind her sister, brother, and great-grandchildren. A family spokesperson is Andile Hashe says she lived for the ANC.
“The only thing that she knew and lived for was the ANC, she loved each and everyone of us, may her soul rest in peace.”
Gcina was a Member of Parliament after the 1994 elections and retired in 2004. She will be laid to rest next week Saturday. -Reporting by Lwando Nomoyi