Mabuza taught me how to deal with the media, - MEC
The late head of communication in the Mpumalanga Department of Community Safety, security and liaison, Joseph Mabuza has been labelled as a humble and hard working government official who used journalism skills to enhance government in communication.
Speaking during his memorial service held in Mbombela on Thursday MEC for community safety, security and liaison, Pat Ngomane said Mabuza taught him how to speak to the press and gave him possible questions that could be asked by journalists in each circumstance.
“I’m still shocked and don’t believe what happened to Joe. But I want to believe what he planted to us will help us go forward. He was my hero because he thought me how to speak to the media and also told me what to say and not fear the media and be friends with the media. He told me to open my foundation to educate less fortunate children and now I promise his daughter is going to be educated by that foundation he encouraged me to open,” said Ngomane.
Mabuza who was labelled a road safety champion died instantly after a motorbike accident on the N4 while coming from work at the Lebombo border to Mozambique.
A bakkie which he was following made a sudden u-turn and the driver of the bakkie who police have labelled as a “fugitive” has vanished until today.
His childhood friend Veli Marule told mourners that Mabuza came from a humbling beginning and managed to educate himself to be a qualified journalist whilst working as a security guard.
“Joseph Mabuza was humble; we met early in the 80s when we studied together spent more time together. He was a dedicated man who wanted all his things to be done right and was clever at school. He worked as a security guard to educate himself to be a journalist who later became an editor before working for government,” said Marule.
Marule said “When he told me that he was working during the festive he sent me a message that said ‘let’s close mortuaries, stop road accidents arrive alive’”.
Mabuza worked as a journalist for Mpumalanga News and later became an editor for the same paper before joining government as a spokesperson for the department of health and community safety, security and liaison.
Mabuza was born in 1971, he leaves behind his wife, four children as well as his mother, brothers and sisters.
He will be buried at the Heroes Arc in Mbombela on Saturday and the deputy president of the country, David Mabuza is expected to attend the funeral.