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HomeNewsDeath of Equal Education’s founding member Lumkile Zani is devastating

Death of Equal Education’s founding member Lumkile Zani is devastating

Death of Equal Education’s founding member Lumkile Zani is devastating

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One of the founding members of Equal Education, Lumkile Zani, has died.

Activists at the NGO have described the death of the 43-year-old as devastating and deeply painful.

The loss of Zani comes a few weeks after the organisation lost one of its co-founding members Yoliswa Dwane.

Through a statement, EE said it was grateful to Zani not only for the invaluable contributions that he made to organising parents and learners in township and rural communities, and for leading strategies to improve the infrastructure of Eastern Cape schools, but also for his comfort and support to EE and the Dwane family after the passing of Yoliswa Dwane in October.

Zani grew up in Alice, Dimbaza, Zwelitsha and East London in the Eastern Cape. He completed school at KwaMfundo High School in Khayelitsha in the Western Cape, studied photo-journalism and worked as a chef.

Giving the words of gratitude and remembering the life of Zani, former EE learner member and current head of EE Western Cape, Ntsiki Dlulani, said he encouraged EE’s young members to be confident and to take up space.

“Ta Lee was about being on the ground, he was in the community meetings and engaging in them. He lived EE and made EE a home for a lot of us. We have lost a beautiful soul.

“He was very protective of the people he loved and he was less of a talker and more of a doer, taking action. He didn’t regard anything as impossible,” Dlulani said.

Former deputy head of EE Eastern Cape, and former deputy director of EE Law Centre, Daniel Linde, said Zani was committed to hearing and being accountable to Equalisers and other members of Equal Education, and that commitment imbued so many with a deep sense of respect and admiration for him.

“I will remember Lumkile’s radiant and contagious spirit, and his dedication to democratic ideals and organising,” Linde said.

Meanwhile, one of the founding members of EE, Joey Hasson, said Zani was central to the formation of the character of EE, by being part of the first school meetings, engagements with youth leaders and organising of events including the campaign to fix broken windows.

“Lumkile was a soft-spoken, warm-hearted comrade who was committed to building a better education system for the poorest children in South Africa.

“He was particularly passionate and skilled at engaging parents, recognising that they were an essential part of the struggle to improve education,” Hasson said.

In remembering Zani’s contribution, EE former deputy general secretary, Ntuthuzo Ndzomo, said: “Lumkile was a soft-spoken, warm-hearted comrade who was committed to building a better education system for the poorest children in South Africa,”

“Lumkile was central to the formation of the character of EE, by being part of the first school meetings, engagements with youth leaders and organising of events including the campaign to fix broken windows”

“He was particularly passionate and skilled at engaging parents, recognising that they were an essential part of the struggle to improve education.” Ndzomo added.

IOL

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