Palacios saddened by Khoza's wife's passing

Premier Soccer League (PSL) and Orlando Pirates chairman Irvin Khoza is mourning the passing of his wife, Matina, sixth months after Mantwa Khoza passed away in January.
Premier Soccer League (PSL) and Orlando Pirates chairman Irvin Khoza is mourning the passing of his wife, Matina, sixth months after Mantwa Khoza passed away in January.
Image: Sydney Seshibedi/Gallo Images

Premier Soccer League's chairman Irvin Khoza suffered yet another tragedy when his wife Matina died yesterday.

Matina is Khoza's second wife to pass on this year, just months after Mantwa Khoza's death in January.

Former Bafana Bafana coach Augusto Palacios was devastated when contacted for a comment regarding Matina's death.

Palacios - who is one of the many coaches that polished Pirates' bench as a manager - said he was actually not aware of the passing of the wife of the hard-working Premiership's chairman until Sowetan contacted him.

"I am very sad; I have known the Khoza family - Khoza's mother, Matina and her children Sonono and Zodwa [daughters], Nkosana and Mpumi [sons] - since 1995," said Palacios yesterday.

"I was very close to the chairman's youngest daughter."

Actually, Palacios and Zodwa established the Augusto Palacios Apprentice Academy in Mayfair in 2005. It is still going on even to this day. Palacios closed it in March due to the lockdown.

"I will always be part of that family," said the 68-year-old.

"The saddest thing is that I cannot even go to the family to pay my last respects because of the Covid-19 pandemic regulations. My heartfelt sympathies go to both the chairman and his children."

The passing on of Matina comes when Khoza is due to chair the all-important meeting of the league's Board of Governors today to discuss the state of affair regarding the resumption of competitive football.

There has not been any professional football action since March due to the lockdown that was informed by the alarming rising rate of people testing positive for coronavirus.

The statement on Pirates' website on Matina's death reads: "The Khoza family is announcing the sad passing of Mme Matina Elsie Khoza, the wife of Dr Irvin Khoza, mother of Sonono, the late Zodwa, Nkosana and Mpumi Khoza.

"Mme Matina, who was affectionately referred to by everybody, including her 10 grandchildren, as Mama, has been in and out of hospital in the last few years battling ill health. She sadly passed at 09h11 this morning, Thursday 23 July 2020.

"She was 69 years of age. The Khoza family pleads with the public to help us observe restrictions imposed on the nation by the Covid-19 pandemic. There will, as a result, be no visitations and prayer services held at home."

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