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Friend who died with #MandlaHlatswayo an 'awesome, sweet soul'

Crime & Courts
Johannesburg - Friends of the second victim in the Meli’s Lounge shooting have expressed sadness and shock.

Remembered as an “awesome, sweet soul” and for his “warm smile”, condolences and tributes poured in over social media for Oupa “Chom Chom” Duma.

Ntokozo Makhuba, a close friend, described Duma as someone who had captivated her from the first day they met and had remained “unchanged until their (his) last day - that is the effect of our awesome buddy #Chomarizing.

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Oupa “Chom Chom” Duma was shot at Meli's Lounge on Sunday night.

“You never knew if you would get a kiss hello or a blow in your face because there were no expectations with this unpredictable, energetic and welcoming soul,” she wrote on Facebook.

“He can never be replaced because his aura was his truth. It is such a loss and it is such a sad day.

“Let’s remember that awesome smile, that 100% energy all the time and how his absence was so obvious because he would always automatically light up any place he entered,” Makhuba said.

“We will miss him always and forever.”

Puni Modiboa described Duma as “a sweet, big, heart-warming teddy bear”.

“He made everyone around him feel good to be in his presence. His valiant heroic act, which led to his untimely passing, epitomises his beautiful heart and love for people,” she said.

Another friend of both Hlatshwayo and Duma, Lawrence Ofentse Seroto, said he was missing his dear friends.

“May your souls rest in peace. We’ll cherish every moment that we all spent together as friends - RIP Gents #Chom-Chom and Mandla,” he said.

Meanwhile, Meli’s Lounge sent their deepest condolences to the families “of our dear friends DJ Mandla and Chom Chom”.

“With all respect we plead to our friends to be careful with spreading stories of hearsay. We are in pain from what has happened and the least we need is to hurt both families with uncertain stories.

“We also plead with our friends to respect both families,” Meli Lounge management said. The pub would remain closed.

“Those who feel a need to comfort Meli at the shop, please kindly do so in a respectable manner since that area is a crime scene and the police still need to do further investigations.

“We trust that we will work together in this. May all who are affected and hurt find strength in the L-rd,” a statement concluded.

The Star

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