The death of Sungura giant Tongai “Dhewa” Moyo was not only the end of one the country’s most sought after musicians, but also evidence that he was a true hero in the Zimbabwean music industry.
As soon as the news of his death hit the web on Saturday evening, thousands of fans worldwide have not until this day stopped sending their heartfelt condolence messages over the death of a man who left a mark in Zimbabwe’s sungura music history.
It was even clearer that Dhewa was a true giant with the send-off he received both in Harare, where he performed mostly, and in Kwekwe, his hometown, where mourners thronged Mbizo Stadium to bid farewell to the singer before he was laid to rest at his rural home in Sosombe, Zhombe.
Among the mourners were Dhewa’s patrons from all walks of life including politicians, fellow musicians, actors, businesspeople, promoters and loyal fans who came in their numbers, fancy cars and classy dressing.
“Dhewa was the one who made me like sungura music. After watching one of his videos a few years back, I was so impressed by his dressing and conduct. He really made the genre look so cool that’s why I’m here in my best regalia,” said a female mourner who was dressed in a black suit with matching Armani sunglasses.
Sulumani Chimbetu, who did a number of shows with Dhewa, was one of the musicians who stayed in the parading convoy from day one with his Mercedes Benz ML 270 and local music promoter Patson “Chipaz” Chombodza with his BMW X5, among other hot rides such as Range Rovers, Mercedes BenzML 350 and Discovery 4 latest models.
Dhewa was laid to rest in a top-of-the-range white casket with golden handles that was donated by Mutare businessman Esau Mupfumi together with buses for transportation of people during the funeral.
“We were his biggest fans and we have travelled all the way from Harare to Zhombe to bury Dhewa because we know he can never be replaced, but his legacy shall live on,” said one of Dhewa’s loyal supporters who was present for his burial together with a group of friends who were also fans, in their Mercedes Benz A160.
Indeed Dhewa was a force to reckon with in music, known for his smart stage regalia and powerful lyrics, many would not stop singing his hit songs including Samanyemba, Naye and Muchina Muhombe.
One would see fans from different angles imitating how Dhewa would handle his bass guitar during performance, imitating his gestures and of course the Utakataka boys gave a final dance for their late master and told people that they would continue with music.
Although people were in deep mourning, many were of the view that Dhewa had suffered much in his battle with cancer and it was time for him to rest, so instead they celebrated the life of a true fighter.