Ifa Lethu Mourns the Passing of its Board Member

Together with South Africa, the Ifa Lethu foundation mourns the passing of legendary jazz musician, Hugh Masekela. Uncle Hugh lost his courageous battle with prostate cancer in Johannesburg on Tuesday, 23 January 2018. While the country mourns the loss of such phenomenal talent in the music industry, Ifa Lethu mourns the loss of a very dear friend and advisor. After serving as a founding Director on the Foundation’s South African Board, Uncle Hugh went on to sit on Ifa Lethu’s Board of Elders. During his tenure on the latter he continued to provide wise counsel on our work and projects as well as to motivate our youth entrepreneurs. His involvement and performances in our many global events was legendary. This was especially the case when he performed for the FTSE 100 CEO’s and Chairpersons as well as celebrities at the Lord Mayor’s/Ifa Lethu Gala Investment Dinner in London. Hamba Kahle Uncle Hugh and May You continue to inspire us and our youth for eternity.

Director and CEO, Dr. Narissa Ramdhani addressed delegates  at the 2nd National Conference of the South African Cultural Observatory on The Creative Economy and Development.  The conference was held at the Turbine Hall, Johannesburg from 24-26 May 2017. Her address was entitled.
The Fourth Industrial Revolution, Rural Industrialisation and Development: Successes for Ifa Lethu in the Creative Economy of South Africa.        
Brand Ambassador of Ifa Lethu, Michael Selekane, joined Dr. Ramdhani as a co-presenter at the Cultural Observatory National Conference in May 2017. 


Edward Maqwacha Miya is our featured artist (fashion designer) for this quarter.  Edward has been fortunate to have participated in the Ifa Lethu Creative Entrepreneurship training and Mentoring programmes the Ditlabeng Municipality(Clarens) of the Free State Province in 2016-2017.


Letter from Ifa Lethu Chairperson

Dear Narissa

I attended the State Funeral for former Prime Australian Minister, the Right Honourable Malcolm Fraser AC CH  yesterday.

There was a very big turnout and the small Scots Church could not accommodate everyone. I was advised late Thursday afternoon to go to the church across the street, St Michael's, where there was live screening of the service. This church too was full.

The service had a strong family focus with very moving tributes from Mr Fraser’s children and especially lovely tributes from two of his granddaughters. I will attach some reporting so you can read this.

During the service there was mention of Mr Fraser’s long involvement in activities after politics and his strong opposition to apartheid in South Africa. There was also reference to his involvement in the Commonwealth Eminent Persons Group. There was no specific mention of the Foundation, but there was reference to many condolence messages to the family from overseas. I assume that one of these was from Ifa Lethu?

It was not possible to convey condolences to Mr Fraser’s family directly after the service. However I assume that the family would have seen the letter that went to the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet. I also signed the attendance register at the church as a representative of the Ifa Lethu Foundation. There is a condolence book at Old Parliament House in Canberra where I can record full condolences, which was more than was possible on the simple attendance register. Do let me know if you think it necessary for me to also do this? If so, I would need to do this quickly.      

On a personal note, along with others who attended Mr Fraser’s funeral in Melbourne, and very many people listening to the service around Australia, it was an occasion to say a very sad farewell to a great Australian and a respected elder statesman who had a passionate commitment to human rights and who throughout his long political career and afterwards took such a very strong and public stand against racism and injustice.

As you expected, it was not appropriate to take photos but I have attached the front and back pages of the order of service so you can see this.

Kind regards

Di Johnstone AM


Ifa Lethu completed two further projects nationally in recent months.  They included the Creative Entrepreneurial Project Phase 2 in Clarens, Free State and the Arts and Craft Beneficiation Project for the Cradle of Humankind (COH)  World Heritage Site, the latter being the Foundation’s flagship project for 2016-2017.