Former NW Education MEC Oabetswe ‘OJ’ Tselapedi laid to rest

Reverand OJ Tselapedi passed away on Sunday, 06 June 2021 after a short illness. He was 65 years old.

Reverend Oabetswe Johannes Tselapedi, former North West Education MEC, was laid to rest on Friday 11 June 2021. Picture: Screenshot

JOHANNESBURG – Former North West Education MEC Oabetswe Johannes ‘OJ’ Tselapedi has been laid to rest in Mmabatho on Friday.

Reverend Tselapedi passed away on Sunday after a short illness at the age of 65.

Speaking at the funeral on Friday morning, his comrade of more than 29-years, Zacharia Tolo spoke of their time serving as MECs under then-Premier Popo Molefe – following the demise of the Bophutswana government.

“We understood that we had great intentions, we were not there to make money, we were there to work for the people. We understood that our personal interests as leaders could not be greater than the rights of our people.”

Also addressing those who attended the funeral was North West Premier Job Mokgoro: “Those that served under his leadership at various roles describe him as an affable character, an approachable man, and a man who never saw himself above his kin; a man loyal to his organisation, but a man committed to his faith.”

Tselapedi's son Tshepo read his father's obituary, which detailed his illustrious career in politics and in the clergy.

“It is hard, as you can imagine, to summarise the life of a legend… A lion of the North West, in serving the people, has ceased to breathe.”

Amongst those attending the official provincial funeral was former Premier Supra Mahumapelo; Tselapedi was touted to succeed Mahumapelo following his 2018 ousting

Earlier in the week, the African National Congress (ANC) described Tselapedi as “a humble, yet fierce opponent of the apartheid regime”, adding that death had robbed the liberation movement of a dedicated and committed servant of the people.

At the time of his passing, Tselapedi was an ANC councilor in the Ngaka Modiri Molema District Municipality where he chaired the municipal public accounts committee.

He leaves behind his wife, six children and three grandchildren.

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