Big send-off for Adam

BULAWAYO - Throngs of people from all walks of life attended the burial of football hero Adam Ndlovu at Lady Stanley Cemetery yesterday afternoon.

And while the request to officially recognise Ndlovu as a national hero fell on deaf ears, the massive turn out at his funeral service that was held earlier at the Amphitheatre prompted all speakers who took to the podium to declare the late Warriors striker a hero of the people.

In his address, the minister of Education, Sport, Arts and Culture David Coltart said the country has to learn to appreciate their sporting icons while they are still alive.

“In other countries sports heroes are inducted into halls of fame while they are still alive and we have to start doing that as a country,” Minister Coltart said.

“I did not know Adam on a personal level but I know that together with his brothers Madinda and Peter they did much more for the country than what politicians will ever do.”

The same sentiment was shared by the Mines minister Obert Mpofu who said the massive turnout at the funeral service was testimony that the people had declared Ndlovu a hero.

“People have come from all over the country to pay their final respects to Adam and to me this shows that he is a hero in their eyes that is why they are packing this place today,” Mpofu said.

“On behalf of the people of Matabeleland North I want to say we have lost a son of the soil who helped raise our country’s profile.”

Zanu PF national chairperson Simon Khaya-Moyo said Ndlovu was a hero not only in Zimbabwe but in South Africa and other parts of the world.

“President Jacob Zuma asked me to convey the condolences of the people of South Africa on the passing of Adam to the people of Zimbabwe.

“This is because he (Adam) did not belong to just this country but to South Africa and other countries where he plied his trade as well,” Khaya-Moyo said. Bulawayo mayor, Thaba Moyo said there was no doubt that Adam was a hero and therefore the city did not hesitate in honouring him.

“It did not take me more than 50 seconds to agree to the request that Adam be laid to rest at Lady Stanley, which is where we bury the city’s prominent residents,” Moyo said.

“And in the same vein, I did not hesitate to give the go-ahead when it was suggested that we avail this place (Amphitheatre) for his burial service because we are proud as a city to have produced such a gallant son.”

Zifa vice chairperson Ndumiso Gumede said Adam was a man of honour.

“I have known Adam from the time he was a young boy and he was an honest person who did things by the book and that is why he was not tainted by the Asiagate scandal,” Gumede said. We have as a country lost a gifted individual who had the qualities of become a national team coach.”

All in all the general feeling was that it was befitting for Adam to be laid to rest on Unity Day as he had played a big part in uniting Zimbabweans through the game of football Reverend Paul Damasane read out Adam’s history and described how the Makokoba-born and bred player had risen from the Highlanders junior ranks to become an international footballer.

He had the crowd going hilarious as he narrated how Adam had scored a hat trick in the early nineties to help Highlanders defeat Dynamos in a cup tournament. -
Sakheleni Nxumalo

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