Provincial burial honour for ‘Bhodloza’ and MEC Ntuli


Thabisile Khomo

THE two celebrated KZN sons ofof the soil who’s lives were snatched by Covid-19 last week,​ have both been granted befitting send-offs that are set to take place this week.

MEC for the Department of Transport, Community Safety and Liaison Bheki Ntuli and former Ukhozi FM station manager Dr Welcome ‘Bhodloza’ Nzimande have been granted category one provincial funerals by the President Cyril Ramaphosa.

The announcement was made by KwaZulu-Natal Premier, Sihle Zikalala on Tuesday, adding that the flags will fly at half-mast as directed by the President.

“This is in line with the policy governing provincial official funeral category one,” said Zikalala.

He said the President’s decision follows his request to him, on behalf of the KZN government and residents to accord these outstanding patriots a befitting recognition for the immense contribution they have made in building a better province.

“We are humbled by the President’s gesture to honour these distinguished citizens. They deserve this recognition for the sterling role they played in advancing the lives of people,” he added.

Bhodloza passed away on Friday last week after what was announced as a short illness associated with Covid-19.

Ntuli, who is said to have been battling health complications associated with the virus, followed on Saturday afternoon at a Durban hospital.​

Zikalala also revealed that the funeral services for the two will be streamed live on all the provincial government social media platforms.

“All the funerals will follow the level 3 adjusted regulations and covid-19 protocols. We are grateful for the outpouring messages of support that we have received from across all sectors of society and beyond our borders,” he said.

Spokesman for the Nzimande family, Zama Nomnganga said they were grateful to both the President and provincial government for honouring Nzimande.

“We are hopeful that everything will go well and that government will ensure that all covid-19 protocols are adhered to,” he said.

Nzimande will be laid to rest on Wednesday at his home village of ePhatheni in Richmond, in KZN midlands.

On Tuesday, a short prayer service was held at Bhodloza’s home in Durban and was live on air on the 323 Cafe show on Ukhozi FM
Former colleagues, King Zwelithini, family, friends and politicians shared their last words.

Premier Sihle Zikalala said Bhodloza advanced traditional music across the nation.
“Today we’re proud and celebrate success of Black Mambazo because of his contribution. Maskandi music nowadays has become song of the year. Bhodloza is also known as a peacemaker, he was against the fights between the artists. He also played a role in bringing stability amongst political parties,” Zikalala said.

King of the Zulu nation Goodwill Zwelithini sounded so heart broken and devastated asking God to intervene and save his people.

“I pray to God to save my nation and chase away this evil, Bhodloza was an exceptional broadcaster and good ambassador of our language. I wish his former colleagues can learn from him. He was also talented and assisted so many artists to uplift themselves and feed their families through music. I remember the day I was celebrating my birthday, happily Bodloza danced in front of his King. Family and friends, this dark cloud hanging over you shall pass,” King Zwelithini said.

Burial proceedings will commence tomorrow from 9am.

Ntuli’s burial is set to take place on Thursday at his home in eMpangeni, north of KZN after a short prayer service at Esikhaleni Community Hall.​

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