ANC veteran and community activist Achmat Semaar passed away at the age of 72 on Monday. Western Cape ANC spokesperson Dennis Cruywagen announced Semaar’s passing in a statement on Monday night.
“It is with great sadness that we wish to announce the passing of one of our most dedicated, respected and loved members,” Cruywagen said.
ANC Western Cape secretary Faiez Jacobs said Semaar was never far from his community and played the role of a father to many he met.
“He was well known in Mitchells Plain. He made an impact on so many lives and was a father to hundreds of young people who were persecuted, arrested, tortured or hunted by the apartheid state. He even played a fatherly role in my life playing the role of a comforter during many hardships. I will never forget what he has done for us as South Africans,” he said.
“During the Apartheid years, he was a beacon of light, a voice that comforted and brought help. He made it his business to care for detainees and their families and made sure that they were not forgotten. Truly he was one of our greatest sons.”
Semaar leaves behind his six children, including daughter Karima Brown, a prominent political journalist. Brown said her father was an activist all his life and well known in many communities.
“My father was an activist all his life. He was always involved with ordinary people. He was a father to many and was incredible. If he did not work for the ANC he would have died.”
ANC activist Hanif Loonat described Semaar as a “stalwart of the party”.
Never turned on the organisation even when he was unhappy with the deceit and corruption. He knew that these people will be brought to book and the ANC will rid itself of wrongdoers. May he be granted the highest stages of Janaat and may there be nur in his kabr.”
Jacobs said the ANC is currently in talks with the family about a memorial service for Semaar.
The janaaza of the late Achmat Semaar will be held at 14:30 on Tuesday afternoon from 50 Forest Drive in Pinelands. He will be laid to rest at the Mowbray cemetery.
May Allah SWT grant the deceased Jannah, Ameen