Former Minister Yehoshua Matza passed away at the age of 89. Matza was a member of the Lehi, one of the founders of the State and the Likud movement.
He also served as a Member of Knesset for the movement and as Deputy Mayor of Jerusalem.
Yehoshua Matza was president and CEO of State of Israel Bonds, a global enterprise that generates more than $1 billion in annual sales. Israel utilizes the funds for economic development projects.
Matza served 18 years in the Knesset as a member of the Likud party.
He was a cabinet minister in the government of Binyamin Netanyahu, holding the portfolio of Health Minister.
Matza also served 20 years on the Jerusalem City Council, 10 of which were in the capacity of deputy mayor.
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu paid tribute to Matza: "I would like to express my deep sorrow at the passing of the former Knesset Member and Minister Yehoshua Matza, and I extend my full condolences to his family. My acquaintance with Yehoshua - a Jerusalemite in heart and soul - began decades ago when we served the general public within the framework of the Herut movement and the Likud party - both in the Jerusalem municipality and in the Knesset.
"I knew about Yehoshua's activity, as a teenager, in the Lehi underground before the establishment of the State. He even participated in the War of Independence. The love of man, the people, and the Land pulsated in him powerfully. I have always liked his popularity and directness, as a warm man who is sensitive to others. Yehoshua was a diligent parliamentarian, and during my first term as Prime Minister I appointed him Health Minister. He attached great importance to this role, which today everyone recognizes for its centrality. Yehoshua also was a force as president of the Bonds organization. The mobilization of resources for the benefit of Israel on a large scale, and the strengthening of ties between Diaspora Jews and our country, gave him immense satisfaction. May him memory be a blessing."
President Reuven Rivlin also paid tribute: "Yehoshua my friend, a dear man of Jerusalem, is gone. A man of Lehi, one of the pillars of the State. A leader of action and thought, one of the planners and builders of Jerusalem, who was a friend even when over the years we were sometimes rivals. I will lack the accompaniment and good advice, I will lack his wisdom. I send a warm hug to his family, I will always carry his memory with me," said Rivlin.
Health Minister Yuli Edelstein: "Former Health Minister Yehoshua Matza was an important part of Jerusalem and a Zionist in every way, a man who had already joined Lehi in the Zionist struggle for the establishment of the State of Israel. As a Knesset Member for many years and as Health Minister, Yehoshua served as an example and role model for the conduct of elected officials for the public."
New Hope Party Chairman Gideon Sa'ar: "Former Minister Yehoshua Matza joined Lehi in his youth. A native of the Old City of Jerusalem and a distinct Jerusalemite all his life. A real Betarist, a clean-handed and honest man, who served the public with faith."