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Former Foreign Affairs Minister, Pik Botha dies

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Former Foreign Affairs Minister, Pik Botha dies

Botha was appointed minister of mineral and energy affairs in 1994 and resigned from that post in May 1996.

Apartheid-era former Minister of Foreign Affairs Pik Botha has passed away.

Botha died in a hospital in Pretoria on Thursday, 11 October 2018, at age 86. He was admitted in September after a short illness.

Born in 1932, he joined the Department of Foreign Affairs in 1953 and then became Minister in 1977.

He served in the government of national unity under Nelson Mandela until 1996.

The SABC said Botha’s son, Roelof Botha, had confirmed his death. His wife Ina Botha was reportedly by his side till the very end.

In 1988, Botha signed a tripartite agreement between South Africa, Cuba and Angola at the United Nations’ (UN) headquarters in New York City. This resulted in the implementation of a Security Council resolution and to South Africa’s relinquishing control of Namibia, after decades of defiance.

He was also a fierce critic of affirmative action and said the apartheid government would have never reached an agreement with the ANC had it insisted on its current affirmative action programme.

In 2000, Botha famously changed allegiance from the National Party to the African National Congress (ANC).

Tributes have begun pouring in for the leader.

“Pik Botha dies. My condolences. May his soul Rest In Peace. His role in pressurizing the NP leadership to change for the betterment of SA & it’s people is well documented”, tweeted leader of the United Democratic Movement (UDM) Bantu Holomisa.

Thabo Baloyi
t.baloyi@politicalanalysis.co.za

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