Heavy rain as Nyabinde laid to rest The late Bob Nyabinde's son Agga being consoled by Daisy Mtukudzi

Michael Magoronga, [email protected]

SCORES of people yesterday thronged Kwekwe Central Cemetery for the burial of jazz icon, Bob Nyabinde who died on Saturday after a long battle with diabetes.

Even rains that pounded the mining town could not deter people including family members, musicians, music promoters, church members, and fans who came in their numbers to witness the burial of the late musician.

One speaker after another kept referring to how The Headmaster, as he was known, led a life worth emulating.

Public Service Labour and Social Welfare Minister, July Moyo who represented President Mnangagwa described the late musician as an exemplary musician whose life is worth emulating.
“He was a successful and humble musician who proved that you can be successful without using drugs. He proved that an artist can be respected within society without depending on drugs. This is indeed worth emulating for our upcoming artistes,” he said.

Minister Moyo said the Government will ensure that his biography which was being published at the time of his death will be successfully launched.

Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare Minister July Moyo addresses mourners at the burial of jazz icon, Bob Nyabinde in Kwekwe yesterday

National Arts Council director Mr Josia Kusena said had it not been for festive holidays, Nyabinde could have been accorded a state-assisted funeral.

“We had written everything to our parent ministry that he be accorded a state-assisted funeral. But due to the festive holidays, most offices are closed. But all the same, the funds will be channelled towards the family once they are released,” said Mr Kusena.

He said a gala will be held in honour of Nyabinde .

“As we are aware, we were in the process of organising a gala for him. It will still go ahead in his honour. We’ll also work with relevant authorities for the publication of his biography,” he said.

Mr Kusena reiterated the need to shun drug and substance abuse by artists.

Representing promoters, Josh Hozheri said they will keep supporting Nyabinde’s two sons, Agga and Albert who are also into music.

“Our doors remain open, we will continue working with you the same way we worked with your father. We worked with Nyabinde, a straightforward individual who never used to cut corners and I wish to continue on the same path,” he said.

Hozheri said the biography they are working on as promoters, will be published on Nyabinde’s birthday.

“We were meant to publish Nyabinde’s biography on 10 March which is his birthday. But sadly he passed on before that could be done. But I promise that the book will still be published on the same date in his honour,” he said.

Tawanda “Bantuman” Jumo who is a teacher and a musician and worked with the late icon, said he was left exposed.

“We mentored a lot of artists together here in Kwekwe with Nyabinde including his former bassist and Chibuku Road to fame winner, Terry Bliss and his son Agga. He was also my boss in the education sector. His death has left me exposed as I have no one to turn to,” said Jumo.

Representing the family, Agga said they were still to come to terms with their father’s demise.

“We lost a pillar of strength and we are still getting used to it. We however thank God for giving us time with him. All we are doing, we learnt from him including music and we are grateful,” he said.
Agga said his father was a man of many talents.

“He was a footballer who once played for Ziscosteel but had to quit after injuring a ligament. He holds a CAF coaching certificate. He was a painter and a cartoonist who once drew cartoons for The Chronicle. He was also a carpenter who repaired guitars and other staff. So he was a man of many talents and we wondered how he did that,” he said.

Musicians including Sulu Chimbetu, Mono Mukundu, Mwenje Matole, Terry bliss, Trevor the One among others attended the funeral.

Promoters Chipaz, Mawhindo and Cossy Rules were also in attendance as well as fans and the public in general.

Nyabinde was born in Mutare Manicaland province on 10 March 1955 and grew up in the province until he moved to Kwekwe due to teaching requirements.

He rose to fame after releasing the hit track, Pane Nyaya and he never looked back releasing one hit after another.

Nyabinde would later quit teaching to venture into music full time where he continued churning out hits.

He would later drop the guitar after he was diagnosed with diabetes which rendered him partially blind.

Nyabinde eventually succumbed to the ailment after a long battle. He is survived by his two sons, Agga and Albert who are both musicians.

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