Tribute to Kenneth Sigidi

The relationship between the Black Sash and Kenneth in the Eastern Cape was a long and memorable relationship. The relationship started in the oppressive 1980s when the Black Sash co-founded many community-based advice offices including the Daliwe Advice Office.

With support from the former Black Sash Advice Office in Grahamstown and Legal Resources Centre, Kenneth and others in Cathcart exposed atrocious human rights violations in the Cathcart area. During the oppressive years, black people in the Cathcart area were forcefully and indiscriminately evicted from farms and relocated to the Old Ciskei.

 

As a passionate defender of human rights, Kenneth collaborated with the Black Sash, Legal Resources Centre and media (Daily Dispatch) to expose how many did not enjoy any constitutional freedoms.

At the dawn of constitutional democracy in our country, Kenneth continued to defend people whose constitutional rights were threatened and violated by government.

As a representative of the Daliwe Advice Office, Kenneth’s relationship with the Black Sash grew from strength to strength.

Before his untimely passing, Kenneth and his colleagues protected the dignity of the voiceless and powerless impoverished people through monitoring the delivery of a constitutionalized social assistance programme in Cathcart.

At the age of 72 years, we will remember him as a strong, respectful and principled person who lived to protect abahlali (“residents”) and uluntu (“community”) in Cathcart. Kenneth’s legacy will remain within the Black Sash.

Our thoughts are with the Sigidi family during this very difficult time.

UMTHI OMDE UWILE (“a tree has fallen”) and MAWUPHUMLE UMPHEFUMLO NGOXOLO (“May his Soul Rest Peace”)