Obit – Reggie September: A great veteran of the struggle
Reggie September, who died this week at his Cape Town home, would be remembered as one of the great veterans of our struggle, Essop Pahad said yesterday.
September was 90 years old.
Born in 1923 in Cape Town, September became one of the founding members and general secretary of the SA Coloured People’s Organisation in 1953.
He later joined the ANC and was imprisoned during the 1960 state of emergency and again the following year for helping to organise the May Stay-At-Home protest.
In 1963, September was ordered by the ANC to flee South Africa and was posted as its Chief Representative for the United Kingdom and Western Europe, a post he held until 1978.
It was in London where, Pahad said, September guided him and other young comrades.
“When we made mistakes, he would very nicely take us to the side and tell us where he thought we went wrong. He had a smile that would disarm you when you were in a hard debate.”
September, was one of the first non-Africans elected to the ANC National Executive Committee in the 1980s.
“He was so loyal, so dedicated and so disciplined. He never wanted anything for himself,” said Pahad.
In a tribute yesterday, President Jacob Zuma said September was “one of the staunchest revolutionaries the country has ever seen” and “fiercely opposed to racism”.