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Coronavirus: Former Kaizer Chiefs forward Rusike devastated after childhood friend dies

07:53 GMT 24/03/2020
Matthew Rusike, Cape Town City
Broadcaster Zororo Makamba became the first confirmed person to die of Covid-19 in Zimbabwe

Former Kaizer Chiefs and Cape Town City forward Matthew Rusike was overwhelmed with emotions after learning the death of a close friend who succumbed to the coronavirus on Monday.

Zororo Makamba, a former radio and television show host, died aged 30 in Harare after testing positive for coronavirus last Saturday as per BBC, before his condition rapidly deteriorated leading to his demise.

According to The Herald, Makamba became susceptible to the coronavirus due to "an underlying heart condition for which he had been receiving medical attention."

Makamba attended the same private school, Saint George's College in Harare as Rusike where the Zimbabwe international played rugby before becoming a professional footballer later on.

The pair had known each other since the age of four and a devastated Rusike wrote on social media, “I have struggled to believe the news I read on Twitter and contacted many people trying to disprove the information to no success. RIP Zororo Makamba, my friend since age 4 [four]. You were a Giant.”

Rusike who now plays for Norwegian top-flight league side Stabaek also revealed Makamba’s final words to him when they last spoke a few weeks ago.

“Last message Zeddy [Makamba] sent me a few weeks ago closed with him saying “Long Live Forever” which is more than fitting right now for how we always thought. And we won’t stop, “We”. Sleep well brother. All the love,” Rusike wrote.

While only three confirmed coronavirus infections had been confirmed in Zimbabwe at the time of Makamba’s death, Rusike took the opportunity to urge the Zimbabwean government and local people to start being proactive in fighting the global pandemic.

“I’m empty. The government of Zimbabwe has to act now and give the people some guidelines and be transparent. Ask for assistance from China. Something. Anything,” he said.

“People in Zimbabwe need to start taking this Corona seriously. It’s doesn’t discriminate.”