Ray Phiri 'terminally ill in hospital'

Legendary musician Ray Phiri has pleaded for privacy as he lies in hospital battling a terminal illness.

Speaking to Sowetan from a Nelspruit, Mpumalanga, hospital, the Stimela band member who is suffering from lung cancer, asked that he be given space. When asked about his condition, Phiri said he was under the care of an oncologist and the situation was under control.

News of the Zwakala and Whispers In The Deep hit-maker's health were shared on social media by long-time friend and band member Richard Mitchell on Friday.

However, when Phiri was called, he asked for his privacy to be respected.

"Let me suffer [in peace with my] pain, on my own with my dignity," Phiri said.

Mitchell said the award winning musician had used up all his medical aid funds and had requested members of the public to make donations.

"Please help by donating funds as he has exhausted all his private funds. Phiri has received many awards in recognition of his contribution to the music industry," Mitchell shared on the website.

Mitchell plea for Phiri was posted by Marah Louw on Facebook.

Louw said: "I called Ray and could hear he is not well after I also found out [about the raising of funds] through a Facebook post.

"I have sent his banking details to a database of friends, but I cannot just give out publicly. We are trying to do as much as we can to make sure he gets the best medical care. "

Ringo Madlingozi said he heard about Phiri's plea for funds. "Ray is my colleague and brother and I will help at whatever opportunity I get.

"We are not sure how the funds will be raised, I am waiting for Marah Louw to say how the funds will be raised.

"She said she is waiting for someone who is experienced in setting up a fund," Madlingozi said.

Dorothy Masuka said she was not aware that Phiri was ill, ". but I'm really sad to hear that he is sick," said Masuka yesterday.

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