Tributes are pouring in following the announcement of the death of anti-apartheid struggle veteran, Ahmed Kathrada.

One of the two remaining Rivonia Trialists, Dennis Goldberg, says he is devastated by the passing of his long time Robben Island inmate Ahmed Kathrada.

Uncle Kathy as he was affectionately known died at the Donald Gordon Hospital in Johannesburg in the early hours of Tuesday morning.

He served his jail term on Robben Island with former President Nelson Mandela, Walter Sisulu and Andre Mlangeni among others. Goldberg says he will remember him for his courage to defend the Constitution that he helped to write.

Former Finance Minister and close friend to Kathrada, Trevor Manuel, has recounted the first time he met the struggle stalwart.
Manuel had been arrested and in custody in Cape Town’s Pollsmor Prison when the man he’s looked up to paid him a visit in his cell.

“I’m alone pondering life beyond this and in my cell walks in a man who tells me he is Ahmed Kathrada. I had sung his praises. It was shock, I was in complete shock. The person who facilitated that contact was a warder Christo Brand. The following day Brand brings me a card in the fine writing of Ahmed Kathrada with a poem: Say not the struggle nought availeth and it comes not only from Uncle Kathy but from all the other Rivonia Trialists.”

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