By Mbali Sibiya
President Jacob Zuma on Wednesday said he was saddened at the death of ANC MP Timothy Khoza in a car accident that left three colleagues injured.
“We are deeply shocked and saddened by the untimely passing of Mr Khoza who tragically lost his life while providing service to our people and was committed to improving the quality of education in South Africa. We wish to extend our deepest condolences to his family. May his soul rest in peace,” said Zuma.
Earlier, the ruling party and Parliament’s presiding officers also paid tribute to Khoza, a member of the portfolio committee on basic education who was on a week-long oversight visit to schools in the Paarl area along with colleagues when a minibus collided with the shuttle in which they were travelling.
“The African National Congress sends its heartfelt condolences to the family of Comrade Khoza. He died in the line of duty, serving his country and his people,” said ANC spokesman Zizi Kodwa.
The three injured MPs are committee chairwoman and ANC MP Nomalungelo Gina, Democratic Alliance (DA) MP Ian Ollis, and United Democratic Movement MP Cynthia Majeke.
DA acting Western Cape leader Bonginkosi Madikizela extended his party’s condolences to Khoza’s friends and family.
“May Mr Khoza’s soul rest in peace and his family and loved ones find solace during this time. The DA wishes those in hospital a speedy recovery,” said Madikizela.
“Mr Ollis has since updated the party that he’s doing well and receiving treatment.”
Earlier on Wednesday, the ER24 paramedic service said one person had died and eight people were injured, including the three MPs.
Parliament said it had sent a delegation to the hospital to visit the injured and to get a report on the circumstances surrounding the accident.
Deputy Speaker Lechesa Tsenoli said Khoza had served his nation with dedication, and his death was a shock.