Yesterday Xavier Mosa Mtetwa would have celebrated his 47th birthday.
But instead his family is in mourning, preparing for his funeral.
Mtetwa was diagnosed with cancer in 2005. He died on Sunday at the Olivedale Clinic, in Johannesburg, where he had been admitted three months ago.
His wife, Kekeletso, and their five children now have to figure out how to live life without the man who worked hard to provide for them. Mtetwa's family in Timbutini, near Manzini in Swaziland, and his community in Bramfischer, where he was an activist of note, are also grief-stricken.
Born on June 7 in 1960 to the late Boy and Namsibi Mtetwa, he finished high school in Swaziland and his tertiary education in South Africa. He worked in the Agriculture Department in Swaziland and later opened his own company with his brother in that country.
A member of the board of directors of the Manzini Wonders Club, he was involved in the Swazi-link investment and also bought and sold property in his birthplace.
Mtetwa relocated to South Africa in the early 1980s where he met and married his soulmate, Kekeletso.
He had several businesses in South Africa, including a hotel and restaurant, and was also a taxi owner.
Several years ago he joined the ANC Bramfischer branch and was quickly elected to its executive committee.
Outspoken and forthright, Mtetwa endeared himself to many people whose paths he crossed. He enjoyed honest and incisive political debates. His enthusiasm and industriousness played a key role in contributing to the Bramfischer branch. It won the Sol Plaatje award for the best ANC branch nationally last year.
He is survived by his wife Kekeletso, his children, Sabelo, 23, Palesa, 19, Mbali, 18, Tsandzile, 12, and Tiyandza, 6, and his brother Simon.
Mtetwa will be buried tomorrow after a service at the Rhema Church in Randburg.
The cortege leaves for Westpark cemetery at 12.30pm.