Dr Abdulah M. Omar, Minister of Transport of South Africa, passed away on the 13th of March 2004.

Omar was a spokesman for former President Nelson Mandela in the months leading to his release after 27 years in jail. He participated in the negotiations that paved the way for South Africa's first all-race elections in 1994 and was named Minister of Justice in the new government. When President Thabo Mbeki came to power in 1999, Omar was named Minister of Transport.

People from more than a hundred countries over the world will retain the memory of his warm welcome address at the opening ceremony of the XXIInd World Road Congress, held in Durban, in October last year.

The World Road Association wishes to extend its deepest sympathy to Dr Omar's wife and family.