Port Elizabeth - Family members and colleagues of late Bosasa boss Gavin Watson paid tribute to him on Tuesday, describing him as a man of God who first and foremost loved the Lord with every ounce of his being.
Speaking at his funeral service held at the Port Elizabeth Feather Market Hall on Tuesday, his only son Roth described his father as a remarkable man who lived an anointed and fruitful life.
"People would gravitate towards him. Dad had the natural ability to motivate and inspire people," he said.
He said that his father loved to see people grow and he took personal development seriously. He praised the organisation Bosasa, now African Global Operations, of which his father devoted 25 years of his life to, saying that more than 5 000 people had jobs because of his father's commitment in building the organisation.
Roth said that in 1979 there was an assassination attempt on his father's life in which he was stabbed in the chest. He believed that his father was given a second chance and reborn in that moment.
"To my dad's Bosasa family, thank you for loving him and honouring him. He loved you dearly for being part of it."
Watson's daughter Lindsay read out a letter from Watson's deceased mother. Lindsay said Watson cherished the letter so much that he framed it and hung it in their family home.
In the letter, his mother thanked Watson for the love and care he freely lavished onto family and said that she could never repay him.
Lindsay said that she believed her father had discovered his purpose on earth.
Watson's brother Valence emphasised that the family had strong Christian values. "We believe that the Lord is above all. That is what our parents imprinted upon us. We believe in freedom of religion. Christianity is a way of life and we are living it.
"It is not to say that we are holier than though, we can say that we are chief of all sinners," said Valence. He said that his brother would have wanted the province of the Eastern Cape to unite in taking the country forward.
Joe Gumede, chairperson of African Global Operations, said the Watsons were like family to him. He said that Watson sacrificed so many years of his life and family time to build the organisation.
Gumede said that Watson was hard-working and that material things did not matter to him.
"He did not allow himself to get attached to material things of this world. He was not attached to a brand, he told me he just needed four wheels to get around," Gumede said.
He added that Watson was a leader and that people vilified him for his belief in God. "He would invite people, he never forced anyone to come to the prayer meetings. Some people saw it as a cult."
Watson died when the car he was driving inexplicably crashed into a concrete barrier outside OR Tambo International Airport on August 26.
African News Agency (ANA)