Elected president at the founding of the ANC Youth League in 1944, Lembede died suddenly in 1947 at the age of 33.
In a tribute to his lifelong friend, AP Mda wrote in the Ilanga lase Natal, “Young Lembede, one of the most brilliant students that this land has produced, died ‘before his prime’. . .on the threshold of a scholastic, legal and political career, that might have been unparalleled in Black Africa.”
Commissioned by the Rural ABM. Special thanks to Edista Lembede, Sibongile Lembede Gumede, Jabulani Lembede and the Lembede family. Also thanks to Induna Makhanya of Madundube and the praise poet Kozkubenjani Shange.