December 22, 2023

Celeb Twitter Round-Up: Twitter Reacts to Top 5 Zalebs We’ve Lost This Year

The last couple of years have not been kind to South Africa –  in 2023, we’ve lost many stars and other prominent figures, causing Mzansi Twitter to down their pitchforks in favour of posting RIPs and heartbroken emojis.

Today, we’re looking at the moments when Twitter reacted to the deaths of five beloved zalebs:

5. Teboho Mahlatsi

Illustrious, creative, a genius … there are many ways to describe writer-filmmaker and producer Teboho Mahlatsi, who died on 3 July at the age of 49 after reportedly succumbing to cancer.

Mahlatsi made his mark in the entertainment industry with a wide variety of films and TV shows including “Portrait of a Young Man Drowning”, “Isibaya”, “Shaka iLembe” and, of course, the ever iconic (and controversial) SABC1 series, “Yizo Yizo”.

Upon hearing about Mahlatsi’s passing, fans expressed their shock and grief on Twitter/X, as well as paid tribute to him:

4. Marc Rantseli

The popular 1988 song, “Quick Quick”, is a known tune that can summon everyone onto the dancefloor. But on 9 November, most people were listening to it with tearful eyes and sore throats.

That’s because Marc Rantseli – who, with his brother Alex, formed the musical duo MarcAlex, the hitmakers behind “Quick Quick” – passed away on this day at the age of 58, just two weeks after suffering a brain aneurysm.

Once the news of Rantseli’s passing broke out, the Twitter/X timelines were filled with laments and loads of heartbroken emojis:

3. Lebohang Mpyana

Funny lady, actress and all-round entertainer Lebohang Mpyana entertained the masses as the dramatic, vocally-talented and larger-than-life gossipmonger, Khelina, on the 2021 telenovela, “DiepCity”.

Sadly, Mpyana left the same masses in a mournful state when the 34-year-old unexpectedly passed away on 1 November following an undisclosed short illness.

In and among the tears, tweeps memorialised her talent and meme-worthy facial expressions that brought joy to all:

2. Zoleka Mandela

Writer and activist Zoleka Mandela had it rough over the years: she battled alcohol abuse and substance addiction; she lost her daughter Zenani in 2010 following a fatal car crash; and she had to contend with breast cancer twice (both in 2011 and 2016).

Fast-forward to August 2022, and the grand-daughter of Nelson Mandela and Winnie Madikizela-Mandela faced yet another hurdle: bone metastasis, an incurable form of cancer which sees cancer cells spreading to the bones.

Unfortunately, Mandela lost her battle on 25 September at the age of 43, causing a flood of grief on Mzansi Twitter. Tweeps paid tribute to her – as well as the Mandela women close to her – and spared a thought for her remaining children:

1. AKA

The entire population of South Africa was floored and left absolutely gutted when rapper AKA was killed earlier this year.

On 10 February, AKA – real name Kiernan Forbes – and his friend Tebello Motsoane were shot dead by hooded gunmen on Florida Road in Durban. The 35-year-old “Lemonade” hitmaker’s murder has yet to be solved and currently remains under investigation.

Shocked fans, friends and family alike paid their respects to Supa Mega, thanking him for changing the face of SA’s hip-hop industry forever with his exceptional talent:

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