Free State Premier Ace Magashule; SAFA President Dr. Danny Jordaan; Mamelodi Sundowns boss Patrice Motsepe and PSL Chairman Dr Irvin Khoza, are some of the head-honchos who were notable at the funeral service of fallen icon Dr. Rantlai Petrus Molemela. The service took place on Tuesday (04 April 2017) at the Dr. Molemela Stadium. Ntate, as Molemela was affectionately known, was proficiently praised as humble, generous and astute by most speakers who unreservedly emphasized his gigantic contribution towards building a colossal brand in Bloemfontein Celtic. The first Citizen of the Metro, Mayor Olly Mlamleli was also in attendance, including Thulas Nxesi on his first official assignment as Minister of Sport.
“Molemela was larger than life. I have never in my entire life seen someone sacrificing his family and giving food and residence to strangers like myself,” explained James ‘Killer’ Mkhwanazi, Celtic’s former midfield player.
Another former Siwelele striker Lucas Skosana added, “We are not only grieving but agonised by the passing of someone who made us heroes without any financial aid. He ensured that his housing projects were completed on time so that he could get money to pay our salaries”.
In paying tribute to Molemela, Premier Ace Magashule said “Through intolerable rules of segregation and apartheid, Dr. Molemela managed to have businesses and run them professionally and that resembles a leader of huge stature.”
One of the moving speeches of the day was by Celtic chairman Max Tshabalala and he said: “I have lost my father, mentor and advisor; I will now rely on the faith and guidance of you the supporters. Molemela left us a legacy that we all need to guard and protect. Let us bond and take Celtic to the next level. Beyond anything, respect the opportunity given to me to lead this titanic ship, through your support we shall triumph” he concluded.
After a long day that also included performances from Mangaung Sunrise and our own Siwelele Band, Molemela was laid to rest at Mangengenene Cemetrey in a service that included the unveiling of a befitting tombstone.