Message by Minister Nathi Mthethwa for the memorial service of Junaid Ahmed

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18 Nov 2016

He was an activist and a founding member of COSAW, the Congress of South African Writers. He became its Secretary General and travelled extensively throughout the country setting up units and encouraging people to write.

He had a fighting spirit that inspired all of us. He was high-spirited and inspired others with his dedication to his work and a sassy sense of humour.  He was exuberant and ebullient. He was truly a member of the creative class who learnt so much from him. Above all, he was a family man.

He was equally known for his hard hitting documentaries and  his more light hearted offerings that had popular appeal. He was concerned with the transformation agenda in film and commercial viability. He also keenly assisted new young filmmakers and advised them a strong script is the backbone of a film.

We have lost a highly talented and patriotic filmmaker who ploughed back into the industry. Our heartfelt condolences go to his wife and children, and to friends and fans! We must carry his legacy forward to make South Africa a great filmmaking nation. He would have wanted that. He showed the way. We will remember him.