Masekela’s last public performance was scheduled for November last year alongside Zimbabwean musical legend Oliver Mtukudzi and a host of young musicians, but was forced to cancel due to ill health. Masekela began treatment for prostate cancer in 2008, and was back on stage as soon as his strength allowed. In March 2016, however the cancer returned and had started to spread, according to a statement Masekela released last year.

Dissatisfied by what he saw as a growing complacence in South Africa’s political and socio-economic landscape, he continued to speak out about the poverty of the black majority, preserving African culture and South Africa’s high rates of violence against women.

“We lost our sense of outrage after we voted,” Masekela said in one of his last televised interviews.

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