The family of well-known Cape Town pastor and award-winning gospel singer, Nkomfa Mkabile, has described him as a peacemaker who liked to see people happy.

The 48-year-old Mkabile died at a Cape Town hospital on Wednesday afternoon after a short illness.

With more than 125 000 followers on social media, messages of support started pouring in when the news of Mkabile’s death became public.

He had been hospitalised last Thursday. Family members and friends met at his home for a short prayer.

He has been described as a passionate preacher, singer, and loved by many.

Born in Mbekweni Paarl in 1970, his family says he had shown a liking for preaching and gospel songs at an early age.

Family spokesperson, Vukile Sekilane, says he also liked to contribute within the community.

“He was a good person, he was the person who liked peace within the family, to be happy all the time, and he also liked to make a contribution to his family.”

His mother, Nontinam Mkabile, says she is devastated by her son’s unexpected death.

She says he had been planning to start a song group with some of his children.

“I never expected this, I had hope and I was saying he would come out stronger and release a song about his experiences as he always does, he always sings about his experiences.”

Pastor Nkomfa leaves his wife, Unathi, and three children.

He’s expected to be buried next Thursday. Up to the time of his death, Mkabile had been active in politics.