Home News Didiza mourns loss of 'two of agriculture's brightest minds'

Didiza mourns loss of ‘two of agriculture’s brightest minds’

'The death of leaders of this calibre makes the agricultural sector poorer,' says KZN agri MEC Bongiwe Sithole-Moloi

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Thoko Didiza, the minister of agriculture, land reform and rural development, has paid tribute to two well-known agricultural leaders, doctors Mandla Buthelezi and Mnqobi Ngidi, who both passed away this week.

Didiza says Buthelezi, who was the KwaZulu-Natal chairperson of the National African Farmers Union of South Africa (NAFU-SA), was “a true champion of small-scale farmers and the farming community at large.” He was also NAFU-SA’s second vice president at national level.

Dr Mnqobi Ngidi, a former council member of the Agricultural Research Council. Photo: ARC

The minister says his death has left her in shock. “Dr Buthelezi will be remembered as a fearless, uncompromising and true champion… He had a special talent of being able to engage with everyone in pursuit of his love for agriculture and farming.”

Meanwhile Didiza has also saluted Ngidi, council member of the Agricultural Research Council (ARC) and member of the research development and evaluation committee.

In a statement she describes Buthelezi and Ngidi as “two great minds in the agricultural sector”. Didiza says, “On behalf of the agricultural sector, I would like to send my deepest and heartfelt condolences to the families of these two champions and legends of our sector. May their departed souls rest in eternal peace.”

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“The death of leaders of this calibre makes the agricultural sector poorer. The industry, and in particular farmers, organized labour and strategists, play a critical role in shaping discourse and strengthening the country’s economy and democracy,” added Bongiwe Sithole-Moloi, the MEC for agriculture and rural development in KwaZulu-Natal.

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Sinesipho Tom
Sinesipho Tom
Sinesipho Tom is an audience engagement journalist at Food for Mzansi. Before joining the team, she worked in financial and business news at Media24. She has an appetite for news reporting and has written articles for Business Insider, Fin24 and Parent 24. If you could describe Sinesipho in a sentence you would say that she is a small-town girl with big, big dreams.
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