Minister Nathi Mthethwa extends deepest sympathies on the passing of legendary songwriter and musician “Ntate” Tsepo Tshola

Printer-friendly versionSend by emailPDF version
15 Jul 2021

Minister Nathi Mthethwa is saddened to learn about the passing of South Africa's legendary songwriter and musician, “Ntate” Tsepo Tshola.   Popularly nicknamed “the Village Pope”, Tsepo Tshola has been in the music industry for more than four decades and dominated local and international musical platforms throughout his life. 

“His melodical tunes from the Sankomota days to his solo compilations will linger forever in our minds. My word of special comfort goes out to his family, friends, loved ones and followers. No amount of words and comfort expressed during this time will be befitting for such a magnificent icon. Nor could it overcome the accompanying grief” said Minister Mthethwa upon receipt of the sad news.

Legendary South African and Lesotho songwriter is an award-winning jazz musician. His fame commenced in the in the 70s as the lead vocalist and composer for the musical group called Sankomota. The band (originally named Uhuru) from the “Mountain Kingdom” of Lesotho was formed around 1976. It consisted of members such as Frank Leepa, Moss Nkofo, Black Jesus, Moruti Selate and Pitso Sera.

In the late 80s they relocated to London where Tshola joined another icon, Hugh Masekela on a world tour. Tshola and Masekela then became friends. 

Minister Nathi Mthethwa celebrates “The Village Pope” and Sankomota’s invaluable contribution to the arts and heritage landscape as well as society.

Media Enquiries:

Masechaba Khumalo: Spokesperson (Minister)

Phone: 082 858 4415



Mickey Modisane: Chief Director Communications,

Cell: 0829920101