Ntsoelengoe, the Azanian flower, gone

Lerato Moeketse

Lerato Moeketse

Tshidiso Blessing Ntsoelengoe, a flower of the Azanian revolution, is no more.

Bles, as he was affectionately known, was a member of a generation of youth in the Black Consciousness Movement, a generation one African leader referred to as the "flowers of the revolution".

His unwavering dedication and radiant spirit gave the movement energy and resolve.

He always lifted the morale of those around him in the advancement of the struggle.

At the time of his death Ntsoelengoe was the regional chairman of Azapo on the West Rand.

He started his political career at 12, joining the Azanian Student Movement at Kgothalang secondary in 1985.

The Bekkersdal branch of Azapo served as an inspiration for many structures of the BCM through the courage and resilience it displayed in defending the philosophy and advancing the liberation struggle during the turbulent late 80s and early 90s.

In 2005, when the planned incorporation of parts of Gauteng into North West was still under discussion, Ntsoelengoe and the late Azapo councillor in Westonaria, Mokete Masetle, provided admirable leadership.

They mobilised the community and demanded that the details of the incorporation be made public, and that the community be consulted.

It is now history that the initial protests against incorporation and redrafting of provincial boundaries started in Bekkersdal, and due to this uprising, Bekkersdal and Westonaria were spared incorporation into North West.

And for not heeding Azapo's advice in Bekkersdal, government is now faced with an "illegitimate" local government in Khutsong (Merafong), a potentially explosive situation in Moutse, and an intractable problem in Matatiele.

Ntsoelengoe is survived by his two children, Keketso and Baatile, and will be buried tomorrow at Bekkersdal cemetery.

The service will be held at Paul Nel community hall at 7am and the cortege will leave at 9am.