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Zuma: Bavelile Hlongwa was different, incredibly intelligent

Former President Jacob Zuma said that the late deputy Minister Bavelile Hlongwa had asked him to mentor her and he intended to do so.

Deputy Mineral Resources Minister Bavelile Hlongwa. Picture: Twitter

DURBAN - Former President Jacob Zuma said that the late deputy Minister Bavelile Hlongwa had asked him to mentor her and he intended to do so.

Hlongwa – who was the deputy Energy and Mineral Resources minister – had stopped to help a motorist when a truck crashed into her in Limpopo last Friday.

She was remembered at a memorial service in Durban on Thursday night, where Zuma gave the keynote address.

The former president said that he had planned to meet with the late minister upon his return from Zimbabwe last week.

Zuma said that he got to know Hlongwa when she was elected to the ANC Youth League’s NEC and found her highly intellectual and impressive.

"She was different. She was a rare breed... incredibly intelligent. When you had a conversation with her, you gained clarity and learnt something."

The former president said he had planned to advise Hlongwa on the changes she needed to make as the Energy and Mineral Resources deputy minister.

"I was very excited when I heard she had been deployed to that department. I said: 'What a beautiful thing. She would have sorted out the problem at that department. There is something that needs to be solved there.' I would have told her exactly what to solve when I met with her."

Hlongwa will be laid to rest on Saturday.

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