Collins Chabane’s son: We will never forget him

Matimba Chabane has remembered his father as a simple man who remained committed to his family.

Former Public Service and Administration Minister, the late Collins Chabane. Picture: Vumani Mkhize/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - Collins Chabane's son on Thursday paid an emotional tribute to his father at a memorial held for the late minister in Pretoria, saying he was a person who led by example and taught his children to be appreciative.

The Public Service and Administration Minister died in a crash on the N1 between Polokwane and Mokopane on Sunday morning.

His two bodyguards were also killed in the collision with a truck, which was allegedly making a U-turn on a highway at around 1am.

Graca Machel comforts one of Collins Chabane's family members at his memorial service on 19 March 2015. Picture: Govan Whittles/EWN

Matimba Chabane remembered his father as a simple man who remained committed to his family.

He said despite his father's busy schedule, he still managed to be supportive of his family and colleagues.

"As a father who both my sister and I will never forget, we are eternally grateful to have had him."

Several ministers and deputy ministers take their seats at the Collins Chabane memorial on 19 March 2015. Picture: Govan Whittles/EWN

Matimba said one of the greatest lessons Chabane taught him was appreciation.

"Be appreciative of all small things over big things. Appreciation is for me a gift that he has bestowed upon us, that we take nothing for granted.

Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa also paid tribute to Chabane and said his death marked the turning point in the fight to make South Africa's roads safer.

WATCH: Collins Chabane's memorial service.

Ramaphosa said Chabane would have wanted his death to bring about change on the country's roads.

"It would have been his wish that our shock and our sorrow be transformed into a solemn determination, not merely to reduce the number of deaths on our roads, but to end them."

He added that road safety had to become a national obsession in Chabane's memory.

"Let us make this tragic event the turning point in the struggle we must necessarily wage to have safer roads."

He also told mourners here that Chabane's tenure in the Monitoring and Evaluation Department in the presidency has proven invaluable in assessing the quality of government service.