South African cabinet minister Roy Padayachie was a committed patriot who died in the service of his country, the deputy minister of public service and administration said on Saturday.
“I have lost a comrade,” deputy minister Ayanda Dlodlo said.
Padayachie, the minister of public service and administration, was found dead in his hotel room in Addis Ababa in Ethiopia by a South African colleague. He was attending a meeting of the African Peer Review Mechanism.
Dlodlo said his wife, Sally, had spoken to him on the telephone on Friday evening and he promised to call her back in twenty minutes. The call never came.
“In that conversation he had been so excited about the meeting and the input South Africa was making,” Dlodlo said. He told her the meeting had been extremely fruitful.
Padayachie had joined the public service and administration ministry in October last year. He was minister of communication and before that deputy minister of public service and administration.
“He came back with a bang,” Dlodlo said, “He understood the department and was very hands on.”
“Roy died without scandal, a committed patriot and distinguished member of the African National Congress,” she said.
“The saddest thing is to die out of the country but he went in the line of duty with his boots on.” — Saps