FORMER mayor of the Nelson Mandela Bay metro Nceba Faku celebrated eight years of marriage with his wife, beauty salon owner Unathi, last week with a “cosy” night in at their Bluewater Bay home.
The couple met in 2003 in Alice when Nceba was attending a conference at the University of Fort Hare.
“He saw me in town and called me a day after my birthday asking if we could meet and I agreed, then he drove to Alice to meet me,” said Unathi, who said at first she gave him a hard time for pursuing her.
“He started visiting very often, even though his meetings would be in East London he would make a trip to Alice. I suspect that he made an effort of coming to as many meetings this side as he could,” she laughed.
The age difference of 28 years at first scared Unathi as she was only 19 years old when they met, but that quickly became a thing of the past as love took over.
Nceba also believes that fate brought them together: in 1983 when he was politically imprisoned on Robben Island his mother apparently said: “Nceba, my son your wife has not yet been born into this world”.
This was exactly a year before Unathi was born in Alice.
“When chemistry is there then age really doesn’t matter. It has never really bothered us at all,” said Nceba.
New Brighton-born Nceba was “persistent” in persuing her and as soon as they started dating he asked her to move to Port Elizabeth with him.
“After meeting my wife I just knew that she was the one for me,” Nceba said.
Unathi remembers the engagement date: “He did not really propose but one day I came home in 2004 and told him that I was pregnant with Ntlonipho, our son, and I guess out of excitement he asked me to marry him.”
Then a 20-year-old cost and management accounting student at NMMU, she accepted the proposal but asked to postpone the wedding until after the baby was born.
The couple got married on September 30 2006 at the Assembly of God church in New Brighton and the reception was held at the King Edward Hotel in Central. “It was such a beautiful wedding!” Nceba said. The lovebirds are now both in business with Unathi the owner of Manati’s hair and beauty salon in KwaZakhele and Nceba the director of AMAT, a company aimed at curbing electricity theft in the metro.
They have a son and two little girls who keep them “very busy”.
The couple spent their anniversary at home with their children but are planning to have a big celebration when they reach their 10-year milestone.