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Message from PEDI CEO Thomas Swana on the tragic death of Councillor Xolile Gwangxu

The Philippi Economic Development Initiative (PEDI) is deeply distressed by the loss of a leading member of the Philippi community, Councillor Xolile Gwangxu, who has given so much to the people of the area through his work as a Director of PEDI and as a highly regarded and trusted Councillor.

Cllr Gwangxu served for 6 years as a member of the PEDI board and his contribution to PEDI’s mission to facilitate the transformation of Philippi, of this historically much-neglected neighbourhood of Cape Town has been unstintingly enthusiastic.

Cllr Gwangxu maintained a reputation as an individual who could bring calm into the many stormy and unsettled issues which so frequently arise in neighbourhoods such as Philippi. His ability as a peace-maker is a sad loss and will be deeply felt by civil society for many years to come as a result of his untimely death.

As we try to transform Philippi into a vibrant central suburb, to bring it in from the periphery of the city’s economy, and to bring opportunities that offer the chance of alleviating the massive challenges of poverty and unemployment in the area, the role of individuals like Cllr Gwangxu cannot be overstated.

This senseless crime has robbed us of a committed and dedicated champion of the Philippi suburb and we offer our condolences to his family and colleagues. The Philippi community has lost one of its most valuable leaders. We will miss his generous spirit and his long-standing contribution to our work.

Thomas Swana
CEO Philippi Economic Development Initiative

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