According to Johannesburg based talk Radio Sation, Ngema’s family announced his passing in a statement, revealing that he was killed in a head-on collision December 27 while returning from a funeral he had attended in Lusikisiki, South Africa. He was a passenger in the vehicle.
Mbongeni Ngema was a South African writer, lyricist, composer, director, choreographer and theatre producer best known for Sarafina, was born in Verulam, KwaZulu-Natal.
He is best known for creating the musical Sarafina!, which premiered on Broadway in 1988 and was later adapted into a vehicle for Goldberg in 1992.
It told the story of a young student’s fight against racial segregation in apartheid South Africa after her teacher was jailed.
In a statement, Sarafina! producer Anant Singh said: “We have lost a trailblazing creative talent who fearlessly brought awareness of South Africa under apartheid to a global audience using the theatre as a platform.