Celebrated Author And Anti-Apartheid Activist Don Mattera Dead At 87

Celebrated poet Don Mattera, who stood out for his anti-apartheid activism, is dead. He gave up the ghost yesterday, Monday, 18 July. He was 87.

Joseph Cotty, a spokesperson for the family, confirmed the death while noting that the celebrated author will be buried according to Muslim rite. The burial details will be out shortly.

News of Don Mattera’s death reverberated across South Africa, with famous figures and ordinary folks commenting on what his death means to Mzansi, especially in the country’s literature and culture universe.

Reacting to Mattera’s death, President Cyril Ramaphosa noted the Rainbow Nation is saddened by the loss of Don Mattera’s eloquent, rousing and revolutionary voice for justice. However, he ended up wishing the soul of the departed a peaceful rest. The president believes that the works of the late poet and author are avenues through which the departed “sleeps the sleep of freedom.”

Don Mattera was a standout voice in his prime in that he spoke out during an era when many were afraid to because of the repercussions. He was, fortunately, alive to see apartheid dismantled. He will be sorely missed for his contributions to the struggle as well as South Africa’s literary space. Stay tuned for burial arrangements.

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