Ben Turok made sacrifices that helped SA attain freedom - Ramaphosa

Ben Turok made sacrifices that helped SA attain freedom - Ramaphosa

Cape Town - President Cyril Ramaphosa has mourned the loss of Struggle stalwart and former parliamentarian Professor Ben Turok. 

The African National Congress stalwart and former long-serving MP died in the early hours of Monday morning, his family said.

In a statement released on behalf of the president, Ramaphosa offered his sincerest condolences to Turok’s spouse, Mary, and their children Ivan, Fred and Neil, as well Turok’s friends and associates.

“I am deeply saddened by the loss of an outstanding yet humble patriot of our nation. Professor Turok made enormous personal sacrifices which helped us attain our freedom. He was a principled freedom fighter, dedicated to non-racialism and the unity of our nation and of our liberation movement," said Ramaphosa.

“He was a true democrat and servant of our people who stood up to injustice, corruption and the abuse of public office both during our Struggle and into the democratic dispensation. 

Ramaphosa added that the death left a big void and a formidable legacy.

Turok was the only surviving member of the original underground leadership of the South African Communist Party. 

In 1962, he was arrested under the Explosives Act and was sentenced to three years’ imprisonment in Pretoria. After that, he was placed under house arrest. 

He fled South Africa and spent two decades in exile. 

African News Agency (ANA) and IOL