A SOMBRE mood engulfed Warren Hills cemetery in Harare as yesteryear actress Rhoda “Mai Sorobhi” Mtembe was laid to rest yesterday afternoon.
Due to transport issues, only a limited number of people attended the burial to pay their last respects to the popular and celebrated actress.
The family had earlier sent an SOS as they struggled to clear the $37 000 hospital bill, which was later cleared following the intervention of Nyaradzo Funeral Services and government.
Famed for her role as Mai Sorobhi in the drama series Paraffin, Mtembe breathed her last on Monday at Harare Central Hospital, plunging the showbiz and nation at large into mourning.
She was 79.
She was buried at Warren Hills’ executive section, where football legend George Shaya and music icon Zex Manatsa are resting.
“We are grateful to all those who have been with us in such trying times,” her daughter Martha told NewsDay Life & Style at the graveside.
Speakers yesterday spoke glowingly about Mai Sorobhi who they described as a woman of great talent who will be hard to replace.
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“As artists, we must be recognised while we are still alive. Mai Sorobhi was a heroine, she deserved more than this,” Timothy Tapfumaneyi, famed for Timmy na Bhonzo drama series said.
Among those who attended the burial were Elizabeth Jongwe and energetic singer and actress Kessia “Muchaneta” Masona, popular for her role in television drama Muchaneta.
Mai Sorobhi rose to fame in the early 1990s in the drama series Paraffin that made her a household name.
Before venturing into acting, Mai Sorobhi worked for City of Harare as a health promoter at a clinic in Glen View.
She started acting in dramas that focused on child abuse, HIV and Aids.
The veteran actress featured in dramas such as Asi Chii Nhai, Mwana Anokosha, Paraffin 1 to 3, Jemanewadya, Chiri Mumusakasaka Chinozvinzwira, Nhunzvatunzva and Nhambetambe Neupenyu.
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