By Patrick Chitumba
Prominent Gweru based businessman Mr Philemon Mubata (54) popularly known as Spoks, has died from complications related to Covid-19.
Mubata who had interests in the mining sector and was also the owner of Central Region Soccer League team Real BVM FC, collapsed at his home in Nashville suburb in Gweru on Sunday.
He once played football up to division one for the now defunct Power Cells FC in Gweru. Family spokesperson Mrs Jenifer Sibanda confirmed his death.
“Mr Mubata passed on around 2AM on Monday. He passed on while admitted to a local private hospital in Gweru and we are sad to announce that it was Covid-19. We are hurt, he was a jolly good man and he has left a vacuum which will be difficult to fill,” she said.
Mrs Sibanda said Mr Mubata’s four children tested Covid-19 negative.
“Mourners are gathered at his house in Nashville. Only 30 mourners are allowed at the house in line with the new Covid-19 regulations announced by the Government.
“We are practising social distancing and people are constantly being sanitised because we are aware that Covid-19 is real,” said Mrs Sibanda.
Mr Mubata ran a mine in Shurugwi. Zimbabwe Miners Federation spokesperson Mr Dosman Mangisi said the mining sector had lost a champion of artisanal miners’ rights.
He said Mr Mubata is a past ZMF committee member and technical director.
“He was a fighter for mining rights. He is one of the miners who started from scratch before going to own a mill and a mine. He was in ZMF committees as technical advisor.
“His works speak for themselves as they are visible on the ground. As ZMF we moan with his family and the whole industry. We lost someone who transformed the mining sector which contributes to the GDP,” said Mr Mangisi.
Zifa Central Region Soccer League marketing, development and communications officer Ms Violet Jubane said they were deeply saddened to learn of Mr Mubata’s untimely death.
“We would like to express our sincere sympathy to the family, friends and partners on behalf of the Central Region Soccer League family. Mr Mubata’s contributions to the football fraternity was full of dedication and selfless service.
He was a sponsor of Real BVM FC and his contributions to the football community will not be forgotten. He made a difference in the lives of many people and we believe his legacy will live forever. With sincere sympathy,” she said. The Chronicle