The family of Afro-pop legend Robbie Malinga say they appreciate the love and support they’ve received from South Africans as well as the rest of Africa, following his passing.

Malinga’s funeral service is underway at the Rhema Bible Church at Randburg, north of Johannesburg.

The singer, songwriter and producer died on Christmas Day following a battle with pancreatic cancer.

Malinga’s niece, Matomelo Moahlodi, paid tribute to her uncle.

“So many memories we have shared cannot describe what an amazing individual he was and he will always be. The bond between us could not be explained as he referred to me as his daughter confusing a number of people. In actual fact he did consider me as his daughter for which I’m grateful for,” says Moahlodi.

“No matter what life threw at him, he always came back guns blazing. Not just a musical genius but a man of great strength and unconditional love. I was and still am your biggest fan. That’s why I’ll always keep telling people what a great man, father, husband, friend uncle, nephew and genius you are,” adds Moahlodi.