Yasmin Jessie Duarte

ANC Deputy Secretary General

Comrade Duarte started her professional career as a Management Accountant at Anglo American Properties Limited, and later Raven Press. She was with the latter when she was served with a restriction order. During this period, she worked with Beyers Naude to set up and administer a scholarship fund to educate and skill ANC and UDF activists, progressive crop of public servants. She was detained without trial in 1988, released and placed under restriction orders until the State of Emergency was lifted. Following the unbanning of the ANC in 1990, she was appointed to serve on the Interim Leadership Core.

Timeline

  • September 1953

    Rise

    JESSIE YASMINE DUARTE was born in Coronationville, where she grew up and completed her schooling. She became actively involved in politics at a very early age and over the years she developed a reputation as an activist and an advocate for equality. 

  • July 1979

    Early years

    She was recruited by Mme Albertina Sisulu in 1979 to establish women’s structures throughout the country, and by 1981 the ANCWL had nine (9) functioning women’s structures in the Eastern Cape, Western Cape, Transvaal and others. She was also serving at that time as the provincial secretary of the Federation of Transvaal Women (FEDSAW), which was a UDF Affiliate.

  • July 1982

    Professional Career

    Comrade Duarte started her professional career as a Management Accountant at Anglo American Properties Limited, and later Raven Press. She was with the latter when she was served with a restriction order. During this period, she worked with Beyers Naude to set up and administer a scholarship fund to educate and skill ANC and UDF activists, progressive crop of public servants. She was detained without trial in 1988, released and placed under restriction orders until the State of Emergency was lifted. Following the unbanning of the ANC in 1990, she was appointed to serve on the Interim Leadership Core.

     

Videos

Tributes

TRIBUTE BY

ANC HQ

The passing of Comrade Jessie is a great loss, not only to the family, but to the democratic movement and the country as a whole. 

TRIBUTE BY

Mukovhe Masutha

Doing research and speechwriting for the Deputy Secretary-General, Cde Jessie Duarte at Luthuli House will go down as one of the greatest honour of my life.

Thank you for your unflinching resolve , forthrightness and mentorship, Mam.

Dr Mukovhe Morris Masutha

TRIBUTE BY

Morgan Mauritianalien

  • We will miss your words of encouragement. Thank you

TRIBUTE BY

Sid Ahmed Baouche

Ambassador of Algeria

Mohamed Hacene-Echarif                         

 

I was deeply saddened to learn about the passing of the Mrs Yasmin Jessie Duarte, Deputy Secretary General of the African National Congress, may Allah grant her the highest place in janaah inshallah.

In these difficult circumstances, I would like to convey to you my sincerest condolences and my deepest sympathy.

I’m sharing the grief of the brotherly people of South Africa, the African National Congress and the bereaved family of Mrs Duarte.

South Africa has lost, in the person of Mrs Jessie Duarte, one of its dedicated daughters who served her country with commitment and selflessness.

Mrs Duarte managed no effort in her fight against apartheid and the elimination of the racial discrimination, becoming one of the icons of the struggle of the people of South Africa.

 

TRIBUTE BY

Lindani Nkwanyana

TRIBUTE BY

Adam Ismail

May Allah grant you a high abode in janaah for your sacrifices and devotion to a better life for all. You have made Muslim leadership fashionable and I hope and pray many of our sisters follow your path for a better South Africa for all. Your relentless and strong will reminds me of bibi Zainab the grand daughter of our beloved Prophet peace be upon him who fought valiantly against oppression. Your passing away during the month of Haj is you reward. Go well and hamba kahle mama.

TRIBUTE BY

Zoe D. Whitley

My dearest mother, I miss you so much. I struggle to find the words to explain the magnitude of losing you. You are irreplacable. Without you, the last few days has been the most difficult, going through it alone without your presence, your smile, your voice, your laugh, nothing is the same without you. This is the hardest way to live going forward. I can only hope and pray that you are at peace. May your beautiful soul rest in peace Mommy, until we meet again. Memories is all I have now. I love you. From your daughter, Zoe.

TRIBUTE BY

Gadija Abrahams Brown

Your legacy resides in ALL of us ??


As you championed building an ethical and capable state DSG,  we can not thank you enough for your leadership and all the sacrifices that you have made for all humanity ????

We will continue to keep you in our prayers. May Allah SWT grant you the highest place in Jannah InshaAllah ????????
 

Gadija Brown
MEC Finance:FS

 

 

TRIBUTE BY

Sikhumbuzo Thomo

A Letter from Home 

 

 

I don’t know why saying good bye to you feels like I am burying a part of my soul. I feel like I have fell into a deep empty hole, lost into endless solitude of realising that our organisation and I has to get through the worst storms with our spiritual beacon shuttered into many pieces. 

 

Maybe because after saying good bye every other word sounds empty. What is true is that ahead of us the future looks painfully hostile and uncertain. And I ask myself; why? 

 

Why has the devil conspired against us? But life goes on and we will find a new path to go on living. If you can call having to live with a broken heart can be called living. 

 

Losing our mother, someone we love is very painful andagonising.  The Japanese call it the takotsubo, a grieving surge of abnormal electrical waves that causes the heart to deflate, and contour until it resembles a fishing pod, hallowed  and cold, an empty vessel, at the bottom of a fathomless sea. It’s how I feel. 

 

Our DGS was so many different things. A truly great teacher. She was a lot more than a mother. There is one thing she was not. She was not afraid. She was never afraid of an impossible task. She was not afraid of danger no matter how hard or unfair life was to her. She loved our people equally. A non-racist activist, she was and loved the ANC to the end of her life. 

 

She embraced non-racism and non-sexism without reservations, regret or remorse. That is rare. I wish more leaders were not afraid, like her. 

 

It’s not until someone passes away that you know what really mattered to them, what they really cared about, what they’ve sacrificed for and what they would die for. 

 

Sikhumbuzo Thomo 

Messaging and Content - DiP

 

TRIBUTE BY

Lindani Nkwanyana

Lala Ngoxolo Mme Cde Jessi Duarte, Siyohlezi Sikukhumbula Winston Siyanda Mchunu Citizen

TRIBUTE BY

Muzi Ncala

May your revolutionary soul rest in eternal peace Cde Jessie Duarte, we will remember your sharp teachings, resilience and fighting spirit. Hamba Kahle Mbokodo.

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