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improving its audit scorecard from a disclaimer to a qualified audit and from a deficit to a surplus with no irregular, wasteful, unauthorised or fruitless expenditure. History The name Kotane resonates with many South Africans especially those who are familiar with the country’s struggle for freedom. It is with pride that this rural area in the North West Province produced iconic freedom fighters like Moses and Rebecca Kotane. Moses Kotane was born in Tampostad in the Rustenberg district in 1905 and died in exile in Russia in 1978. The

The late Rebecca Kotane

location of this municipality is steeped

Lobatla village near the Botswana border.

in rich cultural and heritage history and

they grew up was close to the Botswana

The monument consists of nine walls of

it is here that Moses Kotane grew up as

border and it became a gateway for

remembrance representing the

a herder but became involved in politics

freedom fighters to cross into Botswana

at a very early age. He educated himself

to undergo military training. The area also

and was an avid reader and this gave him

served as a secret hideaway from those

a grasp of the political situation in the

fleeing persecution by the security police,

country. His later education continued

including Nelson Mandela, Thabo Mbeki,

whilst he was in exile in Russia.

and Moses Kotane himself.

His leadership skills propelled him up

The couple are the embodiment of

the ranks of the Communist Party and

the resilience and courage of the people

as a result he became General Secretary.

of South Africa and it is therefore fitting

Due to his astute understanding of the

that this local municipality is named

politics of the day and his leadership skills,

after them.

he became a mentor to many leaders, including Nelson Mandela.

The burial site of Moses Kotane in Tampostad, Phela was declared a national

nine provinces. The passing of Ma Kotane The year 2021 marks the passing of Rebecca Kotane - Ma Kotane as she was affectionately known at the age of 108, in her home in Diepkloof, Soweto. She was buried on 6 Feb in Phela. President Cyril Ramaphosa accorded her a Special Provincial Official Funeral Category 2. In a statement, Mayor Diale said that Mme Kotane would be remembered “as one of the strong women, a champion for that matter, who supported her husband.

heritage site on 12 May 2017. Although

Both dedicating their lives to the struggle

involved in political activism and will

he died in Russia, his remains were

for freedom and reconciliation…

be remembered for her prominent role

expatriated and buried at this site in 2015.

in the Women’s March to the Union

The government further deemed the area

loss and offer our deepest condolences

Buildings in 1956. The couple remained a

of such great significance in the history

and solidarity towards the Kotane family,

thorn in the flesh of the apartheid regime

of South Africa’s struggle for freedom

friends and all people within Moses

until it was overthrown. The area where

that a monument was erected in 2019 at

Kotane Local Municipality jurisdiction”.

Rebecca Kotane was equally

“As the Municipality, we mourn her

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Municipal Focus Magazine - Volume 51