“Seventeen days after we lost our mother, our father left this earth to join his lifetime sweetheart and soulmate, this morning at the age of 83,” the family said in a statement on Saturday
“A loving and devoted husband, father, grandfather, friend and mentor, our hearts beat with profound loss. Dr Gwangwa’s international and activist contribution to and participation in the areas of music, theatre, and the arts in general is contained in the memory and minds of millions across the world and we are blessed and grateful to have been part of a life and legacy of love and avant-garde creativity that spans the space of over seven decades,” they said.
The family asked for space to mourn their beloved parents, and that “the respectful manner in which we were able to bury their mother be continued”.
Details of memorial and burial services will be released in due course.
President Cyril Ramaphosa earlier on Saturday expressed his deep sadness at the death of Gwangwa.
“A giant of the country’s revolutionary cultural movement and democratic creative industries has been called to rest,” President Ramaphosa said.
“Jonas Gwangwa ascends to our great orchestra of musical ancestors whose creative genius and dedication to the freedom of all South Africans inspired millions in our country and mobilised the international community against the apartheid system.
“As we mourn the loss of many precious lives around us, we pray also that the soul of Jonas Gwangwa will rest in peace,” he concluded.