Tributes continue to pour in for owner of Eyadini Lounge in Umlazi

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Small businesses from Umlazi are still coming to terms with the passing of well-known businessman and Eyadini Lounge Owner Jabulani “Mjay” Zama. They say they not only benefited from Zama’s business, but he provided much needed mentorship.

Zama passed away on Saturday.

They have heaped praise on Zama for his contribution to job creation and the development in his community. Zama was the owner of one Durban’s most popular entertainment establishments, Eyadini Lounge. It attracted not only locals but tourists from around the world.

Thami Nyembe is one of Zama’s neighbours. Through business from Eyadini he was also able to make a living. He says Mjay’s passing is a great loss. Nearby small businesses also shared the same sentiments.

“This is very sad for us. When he had big events here, I was opening my yard for cars to park, owners were paying R200 per car. For about 2 years I depended on making money through parking,” says Nyembe.

Local events manager, Sandile Makhoba who worked with Zama for over 10 years, says Zama played an important role in nurturing local talent in the entertainment industry.

“He hired young people from there and on Tuesdays, he would give neighbors meat. He believed in sharing what he had. He was always joking that people might bewitch him if he doesn’t share,” says Makhoba.

The Zama family says “Mjay”, as he was affectionally known, was a philanthropist and passionate about building his community. Through his businesses provided over 100 jobs.

“It’s a very emotional moment for me I am the only girl at home, we have lost a pillar at home. He was supportive to me,” says Mbali Zama-Madikane, family member.

The family says Eyadini Lounge will reopen after Zama’s funeral. He is survived by his wife and four children.

Video: Tributes continue to pour in for owner of Eyadini Lounge, Jabulani Mjay Zama