Mazibuko was a likable fellow, ex-pros say

Boxing mourns passing of Baby Dush

08 January 2021 - 08:28
By Bongani Magasela
Picture: 123RF/SERGIY TRYAPITSYN
Picture: 123RF/SERGIY TRYAPITSYN

The boxing fraternity in Gauteng woke up to the sad news of the passing of Jacob “Baby Dush” Mazibuko.

The likeable and jolly former junior flyweight professional boxer passed on yesterday morning after being ill for some time – his bosom friend retired Transvaal junior welterweight champion Jeffey “Styles” Mankune confirmed yesterday.

Mazibuko’s death touched the hearts of retired former SA  and world boxing champions. They know Mazibuko personally, some having fought together in the same era while others grew up knowing him and saw him fight.

Dingaan ‘The Rose of Soweto” Thobela, Lehlohonolo “Hands of Stone” Ledwaba, Gregory “The Gentleman” Clark,  Jan "Kid Gavilan” Bergman and Pius “Mr HeRcules” Dipheko as well as sports presenter and boxing fundi Peter Leopeng and promoter Sandile Xaka are some of the boxing people who extended their messages of condolences to the family of the  departed fighter through their boxing platform – Save our Boxing – which was formed last year to tackle ammeters that affect their sport while mapping a way forward.

“May his soul rest in eternal peace,” they wrote.. Mazibuko’s death comes few days after the sport lost another former professional boxer Terrence "Ace” Makaluza from New Brighton in Port Elizabeth. Makaluza – who fought against the likes of Alfred “Kid Bassie” Buqwana, Nkosana ‘Happy Boy” Mgxaji, Anthony “Blue Jaguar” Morodi, Charlie “Silver Assassin” Weir and Elijah “Tap Tap” Makhtahini later became a respected boxing referee and judge. He dies of natural causes  in November.

Mazibuko’s bosom friend Mankune said the late had been at Lesedi Clinic in Diepkloof for three weeks.

“I am hurting my brother,” said Mankuine who sounded very emotional during the interview. “Dush was like a brother to me; we did everything together and we stayed close to each other at Protea City. We attended veteran’s meetings and funerals together. Honestly I have lost a brother – a wonderful guy, sweet and a church goer. He lived clean and just looked forward to life.”

Before his death Mazibuko was the public relations officer of the Gauteng Boxing Veterans Association.