Donald Maluleke: Soshanguve's Giant Stadium befitting spot for send-off
The venue was filled to capacity with friends, relatives and the general public at the funeral service of the philanthropist Maluleke, fondly known as Donny, Donza or Dimco (after his brainchild, the Donald Isaac Maluleke Charity Organisation).
Although he was small in stature, Maluleke was described as gigantic inheart because of his noble deeds in and around Soshanguve.
Groups of people of various ages gathered to pay their last respects to the man born in Stinkwater, who later moved to Winterveldt before settling in Soshanguve.
From bikers, car enthusiasts, representatives of non-profit organisations and church members, the conference hall venue at the stadium was packed to the rafters, with some sharing their memories.
Maluleke was involved in many organisations, including the United National Churches Men's Forum, Dads in the Pictures, Forever Young Golf Club, No Excuses and Angels of Bikers.
Taking to the podium, Forever Young Golf Club member and close friend Magubane Modiba described Maluleke as a unifier. “He brought the neighbourhood together. He could literally hang around with anyone and have fun.
“He listened to everyone, even those we deemed outcasts.”
Modiba did however admit that they had their own fallouts, but Maluleke would always be the bigger man and apologise first.
“He didn’t like being angry and hostile for too long; so he always made amends first.”
He left a legacy built upon his unwavering adherence to his famous philosophy, “let’s all be free and let each other live it’s really okay.”
On behalf of Dimco, Kgaugelo Mohlala said Maluleke attributed the success he enjoyed to the support of the community. He regularly gave back by providing generous financial support to a wide variety of causes
Dr John Molepo, another close friend and one of the 100 most influential people last year, said he considered Maluleke more than just a friend; he was more of a brother.
“The list of his achievements is legendary; there are so many individuals who benefited from his charitable approaches.
“As far as I am concerned, he was a brother to me as well as a friend. He had the highest intelligence and a big heart.”
Dr Bishop Mawelele described him as an undying family man who took good care of his wife and four children.
“We all know how he adored Norah (wife). He always almost managed to fit her in any conversation you had with him. She popped up anywhere in discussions. He also loved travelling with her and trying new experiences,” he said. Maluleke was buried at Zandfontein Cemetery.