The African National Congress (ANC) dips its revolutionary banner in honour of Rajas Pillay, a veteran of our struggle for freedom. The passing of Rajas Pillay has robbed the liberation movement of a dedicated and committed servant who placed the freedom and aspirations of the oppressed masses above her own life and personal comfort.
She belonged to that generation of freedom fighters who were prepared to lay down their lives in pursuit of the liberation of the people of South Africa. Her death marks the end of a revolutionary life that was genuinely dedicated to the struggle for liberation. She was a humble, yet fierce opponent of the apartheid regime.
Comrade Rajas Pillay became politically conscious at a very young age as a result of the racism and gross injustices that she witnessed daily as a child. She joined the ANC and Umkhonto we Sizwe at a time when it was extremely dangerous and unfashionable to do so. She started working for the ANC underground in the 1970s and was recruited as a member of the military wing of the ANC, Umkhonto we Sizwe. She skipped the country in 1979 to work for the ANC in Swaziland.
The people of our country will treasure her memory as one of our most distinguished daughters who consciously chose to fight a cruel and inhumane system at a time when it was extremely dangerous to do so. The best tribute we can pay to Rajas Pillay is to continue to work tirelessly in pursuit of the kind of society for which she sacrificed most of her life. This will be a fitting tribute to this distinguished daughter of the soil.
The ANC sends its heartfelt condolences to her family, comrades and the entire mass democratic movement. We hope they will find solace in the knowledge that the nation shared in their grief. We wish them strength and fortitude during this difficult time.
ISSUED BY THE AFRICAN NATIONAL CONGRESS
071 623 4975