Sakhile ’Killer Kau’ Hlatshwayo described as a loving and respectful person
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Death is inevitable. We can prepare for it by paying life policies and burial societies every month, but none of that can prepare you for the pain that comes with losing a loved one.
It's one of those things that leave you with so many questions that no one can answer until it sinks in that they are no more.
The cruel thief that is death has been a frequent visitor in South Africa, and it's unbecoming. When the entertainment industry was still mourning losing filmmaker Shona Fugerson, another death hits the Amapiano fraternity.
On Monday morning South Africans woke up to devastating reports that Amapiano artists Mpura, Khanya Hadebe, Thando Tot, TD, and killer Kau were involved in a fatal accident on their way to perform at an event in the North West.
While the details around the accident are still sketchy, Sakhile Hlatshwayo's (Killer Kau) family confirmed that the 23-year old rising star passed away on Saturday. They said that they received a call from a police officer who informed them about the ordeal.
Arriving at his home in Zondi 2, Soweto, I found his aunt cleaning the yard because the previous night, the deceased's friends and fans gathered outside his house to honour their legend.
I was so anxious because everyone had pain written in their eyes, and there was nothing I could say that would make them feel better.
They describe him as a respectful person who never lost his identity when he became famous.
His older sister, Gugu Hlatshwayo, says she lost a part of herself and wishes someone could pinch her and say it is just a dream.
“Sakhile has always been an entertainer even before he became famous. He used to enter singing and dancing competitions. He was such a giving and loving person. I want him to be remembered as a bubbly and very respectful person that he was.
“He didn’t use his fame as a tool to look down on others. If anything, he empowered them. He loved people and continued to treat them with respect even when he became famous.
“He was also a hard worker and never the type to give up. Whatever he was doing, he would give it 110%. He was always giving to his fans, the community,” says Gugu.
His other sister, Xolisile Makhubu, who describes him as the sweetest person, says she will miss his scent and warm hugs.
With a long day ahead, I said my goodbyes and was ready to leave until his aunt called me to the bedroom where both his grandmothers, Nomgqibelo Nzuke and Sibongile Makhubu, sat on a mattress, mourning the loss of their grandchild.
Gogo Makhubu explains that what broke her the most is that his grandson had so many plans for his future. She says that Hlatshwayo wanted to host a party for his father since his mother died a long time ago. Unfortunately, he is no longer able to fulfil that dream.
Hlatshwayo's music career started when he was still in high school. He rose to fame in 2017 following a freestyle video that went viral on social media. He then released a song “Thol’ukuthi Hey” that same year and never looked back.
As a person who tasted fame at a young age, one would expect him to lose interest in school, but that wasn't the case. He finished school and then fully committed to music.
His former teacher, Mr Sizwe Mathe, who taught him Geography in matric at Lavela Secondary School, emphasises that Hlatshwayo was a respectful person.
“Sakhile was a good learner who focused on his studies. As his class teacher, whenever he would be absent from school to make music, he would report to me in time and ask me to help him with whatever lessons missed while he was away. He was full of respect. I don’t remember having a complaint about him disrespecting educators or other learners," says Mathe.
Mathe adds that what made him even more proud of Hlatshwayo's success is the fact that they both come from the same neighbourhood.
“I was so proud of him because he is from Zondi 2, and that’s where I was born and bred. Seeing him progress made me so happy, and whatever money he used to make from his music, he would take care of home first.”
His peers also agree that he was someone they looked up to because when he became famous, he never changed. He was still the same bubbly person they've always known.
His childhood friend Khaliphani Mazibuko describes him as a person who loved life and would always help others whenever he could.
“I’ve known Sakhile since 2009. We met when Izikhothane were still popular, and he grew to like me because I was never a liker of things. I wouldn’t participate in their Izikhothane things, and that’s how our friendship began.
“And as time went by, we ended up seeing each other almost every day. Not only was he my closest friend, but he was also my personal advisor. He was a straightforward person and a helper," says Mazibuko.
He adds: "Sakhile loved having fun. He wouldn’t want us to be serious. He always said that when he passes on, we have to celebrate his life and have fun. The way did when he was still alive. "
With that said, Mazibuko also clarifies the video of Hlatshwayo saying he's not afraid of death that has been circulating on social media. While others claim it was recorded six days before Hlatshwayo's passing, Mazibuko clarifies that it was taken around March this year when they were fooling around.
The family also condemns any spreading of fake news around Hlatshwayo's death. They said there are no pictures of the car accident. The ones some people have been sharing are false. The family has not yet confirmed when will he be buried.