20 May 2013
President Jacob Zuma has joined thousands of South Africans in mourning the sudden passing of radio and television journalist Vuyo Mbuli, who died in a Bloemfontein hospital on Saturday after collapsing while watching a rugby match at Free State Stadium.
The SABC reports that the 46-year-old Mbuli, who was famous for this trademark “sharp sharp” sign-off at the end of SABC’s Morning Live show, was treated on the scene before being rushed to hospital.
South Africans from all walks of life took to the social networks over the weekend to express their condolences for the versatile presenter, who for decades has been a constant presence in many homes, tackling critical issues with vigour and charm.
“The loss of an icon is difficult to accept. Thank you Vuyo Mbuli for being an inspiration to us broadcasters,” wrote one Twitter user.
Another tweeted: “Vuyo Mbuli was a brother, a friend and a colleague … death be not proud. Condolences to the family, friends.”
Another tweet read: “RIP Vuyo Mbuli. You made sure we started our mornings on the right note. South Africa will miss you.”
President Zuma said his loss would be felt across the country.
“It is hard to think of a more patriotic and positive person than Vuyo,” Zuma said in a statement on Sunday. “He was always cheerful, and the whole nation will miss his smile and encouraging words.”
Government Communication and Information System acting CEO Phumla Williams said Mbuli had “touched the hearts of South Africans through his work”.
Minister in the Presidency for Performance Monitoring and Evaluation, Collins Chabane, said South Africa’s media industry “has lost a giant who used his interviewing skills to get his guests to respond adequately to questions that both his viewers and listeners wanted hear. He conducted his interviews professionally and with great intellect.”
Chabane, who is on an official trip in China, said in a statement: “I further call on young and aspiring journalists to strive for excellence as Mr Vuyo Mbuli did; he has left his mark and walked his journey with pride.”
SAnews.gov.za and SAinfo reporter