Pay tribute to Ting Ting Masango

#146. Remember a different time. A small item in the news section appeared this morning announcing the death of Umkhonto we Sizwe veteran Ting Ting Masango from diabetes. This event deserves more space.

A reader had left a comment on the story about him being a “nobody” — a remarkable and seemingly proud display of ignorance that  is indicative of a greater willful ignorance about this country’s history.

Ting Ting Masango was one of the Delmas Four, and was recently “immortalised” in Peter Harris’s Alan Paton Award-winning book, In a Different Time. I met him him close to 20 years ago when he was on hunger strike along with fellow soldiers Neo Potsane and Jabu Masina. They were facing the death penalty then and had been taken to Johannesburg General Hospital after embarking on a hunger strike.

My memories of Ting Ting Masango are of a gentle man, large and imposing but soft-spoken and with a slight squint.

It was a time of true heroism, of people fighting for a cause so much bigger than themselves — something increasingly rare in the society and the world that we live in. They were fighting a system that was inhumane and cruel, and that exacted an enormous toll on us — and in many ways we are still paying for it.

People like Ting Ting deserve to be remembered and to be honoured.

5 thoughts on “Pay tribute to Ting Ting Masango

  1. I came to know Ting Ting during the night vigil of Solomon Mahlangu who was to be hanged the following day. The night vigil was held at Mahlangu’s place and Ting Ting was leading the proceedings, but he kept on saying ” while we are still waiting for the chairperson let us sing Zinja ziyo bulawa”. I am sure he was avoiding detection by the SB then beacuse the next day he left the country. He came as an intelligent person who really led the proceedings well. I also met him after his release and he has not lost his touch with the people. We have really lost one of the great sons of the soil because of the sacrifice he made for the country. May his soul lost in peace.

  2. Rest in peace Ting Ting Masango …. you will always be remembered with fondness and admiration. You have served your fatherland well and paid dearly for the freedoms that so many of our young people already take for granted.

  3. Dear TingTing, it was a privilege to have known you. Sweet person, brave fighter. I saw you do the kindest act – gently tell a mother how her son died, 20 years later. RIP, special person. Find Moss, please.

  4. Maleme Ting Ting, God has blessed us with your presence in our lives and it was great knowing you and made a huge impact in our lives. May your soul reast in peace. U will always be remembered, in our hearts forever. Love you.

  5. We can never repay men like you for your great sacrifice.
    We can only say thank you and hope to keep your spirit alive and picking up and continuing where heroes and heroines like you left.
    Thank you for your sacrifices.
    Rest in peace Ting Ting Masango

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