By Ricky Zililo
Highlanders and national team defender Peter Muduhwa was among a handful of mourners that paid their last respects to popular Bosso supporter Lubelihle Maphosa, who was buried at Athlone Cemetery in Bulawayo yesterday.
Maphosa (35), succumbed to an asthma attack at the United Bulawayo Hospitals (UBH) last Sunday.
In the absence of Highlanders officials, Muduhwa said his presence was to show that footballers valued their supporters.
“Without supporters we are nothing. They show us love and rally behind us in good and bad times. I know a number of people that Luba travelled with for away games and I’m here to give them support for their loss,” said Muduhwa.
Bosso fans, through their numerous WhatsApp groups, raised $7 000 and sourced various basic commodities, which they handed over to Maphosa’s family.
Club life members Khetha Marizane, Prince Tshuma, Sidumisile Ntini, Never Phiri, Thulani Dube and Philani Mpofu led an adhoc supporters’ committee to mobilise funds to assist with Maphosa’s burial.
The supporters’ coordinator Philani Mpofu expressed disappointment at the club’s leadership for not sending an official condolence message, even through its various social media platforms or sending a representative to yesterday’s burial.
“As supporters we feel the club has demonstrated that it only cares about us when it wants something from us like asking for goodies to assist the team yet it can’t even at least send a condolence message to the family of a member we just lost.
“Luba’s death was topical in almost all the club’s supporters groups that also house some of the executive members, yet the club failed to just send a message. Is asking for that little recognition like a condolence message too much,” said Mpofu.
“Luba was one of the people who contributed towards the team’s off-season preparations, giving the little she had so that the club could buy food for the players before friendly matches. We’re not asking for Highlanders to contribute money, but just a simple message goes a long way to show supporters that even in bad times the club cares.”
When news of Maphosa’s death broke, Minister of Youth, Sport, Arts and Recreation Kirsty Coventry used her official Twitter account to express her condolences.
“I’m sorry to hear this. Without fans, sport would not exist. I’m also asthmatic so this is close to my heart,” tweeted Minister Coventry.
A number of Bosso fans in essential services, represented the multitudes of the club’s followers to give their “heroine” a befitting send-off and sang signature Highlanders’ songs at Maphosa’s service held in Trenance.
Maphosa is survived by two sons Tadi (6) and Sipho (13). The Chronicle