COSATU Eastern Cape mourns the death of Comrade Lizo Vakala and condemns his brutal killing

The Congress of South African Trade Unions(COSATU) in the Eastern Cape has received the news of NEHAWU Provincial Deputy Chairperson, Comrade Lizo “Sir Vaks” Vakala’s death with great shock and a deep sense of sadness. Rubbing salt into the wound, is the merciless manner in which he was murdered.

The frightening discovery was made by police after a massive search subsequent to Comrade Lizo Vakala being reported missing on Saturday 22 October 2022. His burnt body was found in the evening on Tuesday, 25 October 2022, in the bushy area near Addo Road, Motherwell in Gqeberha.

Comrade Vakala was a seasoned activist who selflessly contributed all his life to the liberation struggle. He was an all rounder who participated actively in all Alliance components. His political clarity always guided his participation in these formations. His determination, dedication and devotion to the struggle defined the kind of leader he was. His political activism earned him a prison cell at St Albans Prison in the height of the State of Emergency in 1985.

He was one of the trailblazers in Local Government when he was deployed in the Transitional Local Government as a Ward Councillor in 1994. Sir Vaks served for many years as the Chairperson of ANC Nomkhosi Mini Branch and Motherwell Custer. He also served as an REC member in Nelson Mandela Region between 2002 and 2006.

Comrade Vakala served in many positions in the trade union movement. Among those, he served as COSATU Local Chairperson of Vuyisile Mini Local, Chairperson of Thabo Moshoeshoe Region in NEHAWU and later NEHAWU Provincial Deputy Chairperson until his untimely death.

COSATU in the Eastern Cape condemns the gruesome killing of Comrade Vakala, not as an isolated incident but as a reflection of a society we live in. Crime is on the rise and our communities are under siege from criminals. We call upon organisations in our communities to join hands with police and other law enforcement agents to work together to combat crime. When communities are united against crime with the assistance of law enforcement agencies, they become in charge of their environment.

We hope that the apprehended suspect will cooperate and assist police to get to the bottom of the case. Perpetrators must face the full might of the law.

We express our sincere sympathy and heartfelt condolences to the Vakala family, relatives, colleagues, NEHAWU and the entire liberation movement for this catastrophic loss.

Issued by COSATU Eastern Cape

Mkhawuleli Maleki
COSATU Provincial Secretary
Mobile: 082 339 5482