Social network sites such as facebook and twitter started buzzing around 3pm when the news of her death in the Johannesburg Hospital private wing started filtering through.
Professor Francois Venter, President of the Southern African HIV Clinicians Society and outspoken critic of Tshabalala-Msimang said ‘The family should be allowed to grieve in privacy. Equally, political leaders should keep eulogizing to a bare minimum, to respect the large number of people who died unnecessarily of HIV or who suffered at the hands of a decimated health system.’
General Secretary of the Treatment Action Campaign Vuyiseka Dubula expressed her condolences: “The Treatment Action Campaign would like to send condolences to her family, children and the ANC for their loss. We do not wish ill-health and death upon any human being although we had differences with the former minister of health. Only history will judge all of us on what we have done to save lives of thousands of people living with HIV!”
One of the former minister’s greatest adversaries Zackie Achmat was one of the first to post a comment on his facebook page: “Manto Tshabalala-Msimang has died. I hope that people speak the truth without venom.”