Savita Mbuli, the widow of former Morning Live anchor Vuyo Mbuli. Picture: Antoine de Ras
Savita Mbuli, the widow of former Morning Live anchor Vuyo Mbuli. Picture: Antoine de Ras

Savita will never forget love of her life

By Mantombi Makhubele Time of article published May 15, 2016

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It will be three years on Thursday since Morning Live presenter Vuyo Mbuli passed away. For his wife Savita, it still feels like yesterday. The business woman who manages big blue-chip clients says she does not dream of anything except for a long life so she can be there for her children and her grandchildren.

“Vuyo and I lived a very blessed life. We travelled the world and experienced so many beautiful things. Since his death, I do not dream of attaining any material things. My dream is to have life so I can be there for my children. I have a fear of death because I have seen what losing a parent can do to children. No one has a guaranteed tomorrow,” says Savita in an exclusive interview at her offices in Wendywood, Sandton.

“All I want is to see my children grow, get married and have their own children. I pray to God every day that he may just give me long life,” the widow says.

As if grieving in public was not enough after her husband collapsed and died while watching a rugby game in Bloemfontein, Savita was embroiled in a legal battle with the FNB bank which was claiming more than R10 million against her husband’s estate. It later turned out to be a typing error from the bank. The amount was just over R1m.

She won the battle at the South Gauteng High Court.

Savita also had to contend with claims about her husband’s extra-marital affairs.

“There was so much that was going on and I found myself handling so many situations. The strangest thing is that Vuyo always told me about how strong I am but I never knew what he meant. When issues started flaring up and I had to be strong, I kept on hearing his voice saying: Thando (love), you are strong’,” she says.

Her brother has since stepped in and taken over the role of a father to her 18-year-old daughter and 16-year-old son. However, she says the void is still there.

“I don’t think I have dealt with the void in our lives yet. Every little thing reminds me of Vuyo. I never used to drive anywhere on my own. Vuyo used to drive me. He was one of those traditional husbands who did grocery shopping. I think of him constantly. It’s going to take me a while to accept that he is not here,” says the former journalist.

She says things like school parents’ meetings still makes her feel uncomfortable.

“I get very sad that I am alone. I am not a single mom, I am an alone parent. And that’s it. There is no father. The father is at West Park cemetery,” she explains.

She says she sees so much of the much-loved former TV presenter in her children.

Her daughter was involved in the Fees Must Fall play which she produced, wrote and directed at St Mary’s School two weeks ago.

“I had goosebumps during the entire play. Her content in the play and the use of the language and analysis of current issues was amazing. I don’t know where my husband is. But wherever he is, I know that he was proud,” says Savita.

“He might not have left us with millions but what he left with the kids nobody can take away. They can articulate their opinions. They are so fearless and outspoken as their father was. We’ve had political discussions since they were babies,” she explains.

“You appreciate his legacy at different times. As black as he is and being in the minority, my son is the best public speaker at the school.

“He’s won all competitions on public speaking. He does not rehearse for most of his speeches. He is good with impromptu speaking. I see his dad in him. Even the gestures and the facial expressions and the choice of words.”

Next Sunday, many will take to the streets for the 2016 Vuyo Mbuli 10km Memorial Run in Houghton, Joburg.

And now that the dust has settled, it’s time for Savita to focus on healing with the help of a counsellor. She has also disputed claims she is engaged to a new man. “I am not interested in marriage or a relationship. Maybe in my fifties or sixties for companionship but not any time soon,” she says.

The Sunday Independent

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