Free State Legislature sends its heartfelt condolences on the passing of Mantsheng Anna Tsopo
The Speaker of the Free State Legislature, Hon. Mamiki Qabathe wishes to convey a heartfelt message of condolences to the family, friends, comrades and all the people who knew Mrs. Mantsheng Ouma Tsopo and are sadly touched by her passing away. Puma Stoop as she was affectionately known to the people of the Free State and the country as a whole, died in the early hours of Sunday, 1st January 2017 after she was briefly admitted into hospital on Christmas Eve.
She also had a very balanced political and academic life in which she studied personnel management and received a Diploma in Pedagogics from the University of the North. She holds a Bachelor Degree in Management Leadership from University of the Free State and a Certificate in Project Management. She also holds two Masters Degrees in Public Administration and in Governance and Political Transformation. She further received a Certificate in Executive Leadership Programme from Harvard University and participated in Executive Leadership Programme delivered by India and Thailand, in Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore (2005) and another Certificate in Governance and Leadership (2013). She also attended many other seminars and training aimed at expanding knowledge in public administration such as the Postgraduate Diploma in Governance and Leadership. She was also admitted to do a PHD in Governance and Political Transformation at North West University.
Ouma Tsopo’s life and times are a well known factor in the history of our country because she shared her life with all of us. She dedicated her life to the services of the people of our country until the last day of her life. She was a teacher by profession and was responsible for knowledge production in the early 1980s where she worked at Naledi High School before joining the Masilo Town Council as the Administrator during the period 1988-1993. Then in 1994 she was elected and became a Member of the First democratically constituted Legislature in the Free State. She was then appointment the Member of the Executive Council (MEC) responsible Local Government and Housing and also became a Leader of Government Business from 1997-1999. During the same period until 2004, she also served as a MEC in various other portfolios responsible for Education, Sports, Arts, Culture and Recreation, Social Development and Local Government and Housing. Post 2009, Tsopo continued to serve as a Member of the Provincial Legislature in which she occupied the position of the Deputy Speaker, the Acting Speaker and was formally appointed as the Speaker in 2013. Then she became a Member of Parliament of the Republic of South Africa. During 2014, Tsopo served as the ANC Whip in Parliament responsible for Trade and Industry. She also served as the Chairperson of Reference Group on Capacity building of National Speakers forum in 2010 and as a Member of Reference group on sector oversight model 2010 to date.
Many of the progressive policies and legislations we have today in our country passed through her careful consideration.
She was a member of the African National Congress and has served in all its structures from a branch to the National Executive Committee, the highest structure of the ruling party in South Africa.
As the Free State Legislature, we wish to convey this message of deep heartfelt condolences to all the people of the province and the country. We have lost a giant who understood the needs of our people. Women in our country suffer a lot of discrimination resulting from various types of stereotypes and many of them are unable to realise their full potential in terms of what they can offer to the transformation of our country. We pass our sincere deepest respect for the colossal example she set for many young and old women in our country who sometimes consider giving up the struggle to continue believing in their worth. She was indeed a leader to all of us and we will forever be indebted to her immense contribution.
Details of the Funeral:
The Free State Legislature recognises and respects the fact that Mrs. Tsopo will be granted an Official State Funeral as approved by the Presidency South Africa. The MEC for Finance Hon. Elzabe Rockman, who has been appointed the Acting Premier, will lead the funeral arrangements and the Executive will be responsible for all forms of communication regarding the funeral from now onwards.
Free State Legislature
076 231 6810