He was an exceptional talent: Ramaphosa mourns Bob Mabena
Johannesburg - President Cyril Ramaphosa has described the late Bob Mabena as an "exceptional talent". The legendary radio broadcaster died of a cardiac arrest on Monday afternoon, Power FM confirmed.
The former Metro FM, Kaya FM and Highveld Radio broadcaster was 51 at his time of death.
His family has appealed for privacy.
Said Ramaphosa: “This is a sad loss not only to Bob’s family and friends, but to the broadcast fraternity and the country. His exceptional talent and voice of reason and insight reached millions of South Africans in their homes, workplaces and vehicles.
“It is very sad that such an iconic and household voice has gone silent. May his soul rest in peace”.
Mabena was a renowned television and radio personality who started his career in 1989. He went on to host numerous television and radio shows across many prominent broadcast houses. He mentored and paved the way for many emerging broadcasters to achieve their own success in a dynamic and competitive entertainment and broadcast industry, said the Presidency.
Earlier, the DA said Mabena had been a role model to some of the country's "biggest and brightest broadcasters".
"Mabena was not only a legend of our airwaves - he was also a pioneer and role model to many of South Africa’s current biggest and brightest broadcasters," said the DA via a statement.
"For more than three decades, Mabena entertained our nation and was a constant feature of our daily lives through his music and radio shows. He was a giant in the media industry who has left an indelible mark in music, arts and broadcasting."
The party extended condolences to Mabena's family, friends and colleagues.
The ANC said via a statement that Mabena was an accomplished broadcaster who "brightened many mornings" via his breakfast show.
"For years, Mabena has been a constant presence in South African homes, tackling various issues of national importance with charm, respect and an all-embracing and inclusive manner.
"It was this ability to converse with and entertain all types of people that also made Mr Mabena a sought after public speaker and master of ceremonies, jobs he would carry out with flair. He will be sadly missed."
The party extended its condolences to Mabena's family, friends and colleagues, saying it wished them "strength and fortitude during this difficult time".