Tributes pour in for gospel star Linda Gcwensa
The gospel fraternity is in mourning after the death of music group Avante founder Linda Gcwensa on Sunday.
According to SABC News, the star was in and out of hospital for several years with kidney problems and was again admitted to hospital last week.
“He was sick. As I think you know he’s been sick for years. He has been in and out of the hospital and he was getting better, you know. He had a problem with his kidneys. He died in hospital in the early hours of this (Sunday) morning about 1.30am,” the group's manager, Sindisiwe Cele, said.
He is expected to be buried at his family farm in Mzembe, close to Port Shepstone in KwaZulu-Natal. A memorial service will be held at the Ethekwini Community Church on Thursday.
Avante were discovered by Mbongeni Ngema in the 1990s and ruled the airwaves with their hits, including Qina.
News of Linda's death left fans saddened and led to tributes from musicians, friends and government officials.
MEC for arts and culture in KZN Hlengiwe Mavimbela paid tribute to the star and called Linda's death a tragic loss for the gospel fraternity.
“Avante was one of the popular gospel groups hailing from KwaMashu which won several awards. At the height of the group's offering, their music revived faith and filled both young and old with hope. Gcwensa will be remembered for being at the helm of this gospel legacy,” she said in a statement on Monday.
Meanwhile, actor Zola Hashatsi and musician Zakwe took to social media to pay their respects to the musician.
View this post on Instagram
Founder of the gospel music group Avante, Linda Gcwensa died in the early hours of today morning. The 47-year-old singer-songwriter from KwaMashu, north of Durban, has been unwell for a number of years and was admitted to hospital last week. Avante enjoyed great success after they were spotted in 1993 by @mbongeni_ngema . Their debut album Yek’ iJerusalema reached gold status and their 2003 release ‘Qina’ went platinum. #RIPLindaGcwensa
It's Gospel Time boss Thokozani Nkosi wrote: “Sad to have learned of the passing of brother Linda Gcwensa. Fare thee well maestro, you wrote amazing songs; you were a gifted psalmist and your music will live on. Condolences to the Gcwensas and the Avante family.”