Minister Nathi Mthethwa joins the nation in mourning the passing of legendary pop icon Ricardo

Ricardo Groenewald, best known for his ballad "I love you Daddy" sadly passed away on Wednesday at the age of 43 after a long battle with cancer. He had burst into the music scene when still a child aged 8 years old.

"This song "I love you Daddy" captured the imagination of South Africans who were won over by Ricardo's voice, the memorable yet simple lyrics and the melodious tune that appealed to families and their loved ones everywhere," said Minister Mthethwa.

Ricardo rose to fame during a time when South Africa was still in the last years of apartheid rule, in a country in which the migrant labour system still tore families apart and where the pure voice of a child could represent an innocent and peaceful yet powerful protest at the system.

"His music conveyed a theme of heartfelt hope and unconditional love, an idyllic gesture in a world wracked with violence and fear."

This song and his exuberance in performance took him on to the international stage when in 1989, he performed alongside Stevie Wonder on the Children Of The World Tour.

"Our memories will be of him forever young." "In his last days, he must have known that he too was cherished when a benefit concert was held in his honour by friends in the industry. Our condolences go to his wife Helen, his three children, his family, friends and fans," said Minister Mthethwa.

For more information, contact:

Lisa Combrinck

Cell: 082 821 4886