Tributes are pouring in for former Bafana Bafana player Bheka Phakathi. 43-year-old Phakathi was tragically killed in a car accident on the R33 in Greytown in the KwaZulu-Natal midlands in the early hours of Sunday morning.
It’s believed that the driver of vehicle that collided with them lost control and veered off the road.
He died at the scene. He was traveling with two others who were seriously injured.
His family is still is battling to come to terms with their loss.
Bheka’s sister, Sithembile Phakathi says: “Bheka was loved by the whole community of Lamontville. The accident happened early in the morning yet we have many people coming to pay their respects here. It shows how much he was loved. He was a people’s person. He was kind hearted. He loved his family very much and he didn’t desert us.”
Phakathi played for Orlando Pirates, Goldern Arrows and Maritzburg United.
At time of his death he was a head coach of ABC Motsepe League Team – uMvoti FC in Greytown.
The team had just won a provincial title and were set to play in the national play-offs to the NFD.
Umvoti FC team manager, Bongani Msomi says: “We had a good season with him. So it’s a big loss and we are hoping that as a team and all players and the whole management will be able to dedicate play offs to our coach and say to him we still believe that the guys will do whatever he always told them to do and make sure that we win the promotion to the NFD.”
The football fraternity has reacted. They say death has robbed the country a national asset.
Former teammate, Vusi Kanu Vilakazi says: “It’s a loss for football setup in SA considering that Bheka was a young coach. He was just coming up and we were about to see his progress in terms of achievement. I have played with Bheka Phakathi at Golden Arrows and I have also worked with him at a coaching capacity because when we were relegated he was an assistant coach to Shaun Bartlet. So we share a lot of memories together”
He leaves behind his mother, wife and four children.