You were a rock

Poppie Buthelezi, one of the victims of the June 16 uprising in 1976, has at last succumbed to the bullet that lodged in her spine.

Poppie Buthelezi, one of the victims of the June 16 uprising in 1976, has at last succumbed to the bullet that lodged in her spine.

She was an icon and the face of all the pupils who died to secure freedom for all south Africans. She fearlessly gave testimony about police brutality and the struggle to free black people from the oppressive apartheid government.

She had an indomitable spirit. She rebuilt her life, albeit in a wheelchair, and began an awareness campaign for the rights of the disabled.

Together with Friday Mavuso she founded the self-help association of paraplegics. She did not let her wounds dictate her life but continued to ask uncomfortable questions about those who disappeared during the struggle.

She was a rock. She did not bemoan her fate but went out of her way to serve others.

She will remain a mirror of excellence in community service, activism against all odds. Hamba Kahle, Mbokodo.

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