The South African government has expressed condolences to the families of journalists Ngwako Modjadji and Sefako Nyaka following their deaths at the weekend.
Modjadji, who was a senior political reporter for the City Press, died in what is believed to have been a hit and run incident in Soweto on Saturday night. Nyaka was a veteran journalist who worked for several years at SABC and other media houses. He joined the public service in 1994 and served as a government communicator.
In a statement issued on Monday, GCIS Acting Director General Phumla Williams said Nyaka played an instrumental role in mentoring upcoming government communicators post-apartheid.
“In this regard, our country has been robbed of great professionals and journalists, who through their work, were committed to make South Africa a thriving democracy and a better place. Our hearts go to their families, friends and media colleagues,” she said.
“As government communicators, we work closely with journalists on a daily basis and always saddens us when we lose a journalist and it is with a heavy heart that we have to bid farewell to the two great journalists Ngwako Modjadji and Sefako Nyaka,” Williams added.
Government said it believes that media plays a critical role in serving the public interest by reporting in a transparent, objective and helpful manner that significantly contributes towards creating a tenet for the basic freedoms of every citizen.
“We are on the eve of yet another elections in our country and it is during events like these that we note and appreciate the work of journalists in telling the South African story.
“The two journalists upheld the principles and ethics of the media profession and have left behind a legacy for many media professionals to follow,” Williams said.