Fans, family and many big-name entertainers paid tribute to music legend Mandoza at a memorial service held yesterday at Johannesburg’s Standard Bank Arena.
Arts and Culture Minister Nathi Mthethwa described Mandoza as a lion who had roared at the Thank You SABC concert at Orlando Stadium, a week before his death.
“That was his last roar, which all of South Africa will remember,” he said.
Mthethwa’s speech was interrupted when a brawl broke out among some of those present and police had to intervene.
He praised Mandoza’s widow, Mpho‚ saying she was a lioness who had stood by her man.
“We are here to pay tribute to a hero. Mandoza is a hero who is going to last forever.”
Artists including Zahara‚ Mshoza‚ Zola‚ Brickz and Doc Shebeleza all paid tribute to him.
His son, Tokollo Tshabalala, said he could write a book about their adventures together. “When we were young‚ making hits, we had so much fun,” Tshabalala said.
He told of his last meeting with his father, saying the kwaito star had confided that he was hurting.
“Wherever he is‚ he is resting. He is at peace.”
Brickz said he was proud of Mandoza for living his life to the full: “He’s lived his life. He’s done all the most important things.
“He’s pushed kwaito music. He’s pushed the kwaito flag. I feel proud that he made me a man.”
Yizo Yizo’s Israel Makoe said: “It’s a loss. He was a father. He was everything. He used to bring everyone together.”
Other celebrities included Moshoza, Florence Masebe and Danny K, who also sang, and Bafana Bafana coach Shakes Mashaba.
Bongo Maffin’s Jah Seed said: “Not only was he an icon‚ a friend in the music industry‚ he was a young man. We feel sad for his family because he was a family man.”