SA soccer legend Philemon 'Chippa' Masinga to be given provincial official funeral in Klerksdorp
South African soccer legend Philemon Chippa Masinga will be given a provincial official funeral when he is laid to rest in Klerksdorp in the North West on Thursday January 24.
The national Sports Ministry confirmed to SowetanLIVE on Tuesday that the request for a provincial official funeral has been sent to president Cyril Ramphosa and it is expected to be given the green light.
“Yes the request has been received (by president Ramaphosa) and we are actually processing that with the office of the premier in North West‚” confirmed Sports Ministry spokesman Vuyo Mhaga.
“In no time we will be able to bring South Africans into our confidence that the request has been approved by the president (Ramaphosa).
“The family has also indicated that the memorial service will be held in Johannesburg on Friday (January 18) and another one will be held in North West next Tuesday.
"But the details of the venues will possibly be communicated sometime tomorrow (Wednesday).”
Mhaga also clarified earlier speculation that suggested Masinga’s funeral would be held on Sunday January 27‚ saying the family requested that it rather be held on Thursday next week.
“The family‚ when they reconsidered‚ arrived at the determination that it must be held on Thursday‚” said Mhaga.
“Initially it was planned for the 27th but the family changed it again last night (Monday) to Thursday.”
The president of the South African Masters & Legends Football Association (SAMLFA)‚ Buddha Mathathe‚ said the funeral will be held at the Klerksdorp Stadium as per Masinga’s last wish.
“We had a meeting at Safa House on Monday with the president of Safa Danny Jordaan and government officials from the sport ministry‚" he said.
“Masinga’s family‚ his (fiancée) and eldest son‚ and other family members were there and we agreed that we will give Chippa a provincial government funeral in North West.”
Mathathe said they were still waiting for the government to confirm the official provincial funeral as well as the venues for the two memorial services.
“We got the assurance from the government representatives that they would expedite our request for Chippa to be afforded a provincial official funeral‚” said Mathathe.
Masinga‚ who was the vice president of SAMLFA‚ passed away at a Parktown private hospital in Johannesburg on Sunday after battling with cancer towards the end of last year.
The former Bafana striker‚ who scored 18 goals for the national team‚ leaves behind three children and a fiancée‚ Ntombi Nombewu‚ the lady he was engaged to after divorcing from his first wife.