ANC mourns death of activist and education expert Graeme Bloch

09 April 2021 - 12:43
By TimesLIVE
Cheryl Carolus and Graeme Bloch. File photo.
Image: John Liebenberg Cheryl Carolus and Graeme Bloch. File photo.

The ANC in the Western Cape said it was saddened by the passing away of mass democratic movement stalwart Graeme Bloch on Friday.

Bloch was the husband of former ANC deputy secretary-general Cheryl Carolus.

“Comrade Bloch comes from a family of activists and is one of those activists who epitomised the non-racial character of the liberation struggle. Like his wife, he was detained and banned without trial by the apartheid regime because of his fight for a just, non-sexist, non-racial and free South Africa,” the party said in a statement.

“He was an educationist who with fellow educators such as Saleem Mowzer, a former mayoral committee member when the ANC was in charge of the City of Cape Town, were part of the National Education Crisis Committee [NECC] with the likes of Eric Molobi and Father Smangaliso Mkhatshwa. The NECC rejected apartheid education and worked for one that was non-racial, democratic and united.”

Bloch's brother Lance said in a post on Facebook on Friday that he had suffered from a neurodegenerative disease.

RIP GRAEME BLOCH, MY BROTHER 23/1/56-9/4/21 A fearless fighter for justice and equality Banned, detained, beaten by the...

Posted by Lance Bloch on Friday, April 9, 2021

Mowzer said in a tribute that Bloch was an active participant in the UDF and the National Union of South African Students.

“I served with him on the NECC. He wrote policy positions on a new education system in the 70s, 80s and 90s. One of the most important things about Graeme is that he entrenched himself in the struggle against apartheid,” said Mowzer.

Bloch was part of the formation of the End Conscription Campaign, an organisation that rejected military service under the apartheid government.

“The ANC salutes comrade Bloch for his courage, integrity, commitment and role he played in making the first democratic elections of 1994 possible. We grieve with the Bloch and Carolus families and extend our deepest condolences to them,” said the party.