The management team of deceased iconic South African gospel musician Sfiso Ncwane has blasted fraudsters who have illegally turned his funeral into a money-making scheme by selling pirated DVDs of the service for R10 (USD 70 cents) in Durban, South Africa.
A local newspaper reported that DVDs of the singer's funeral service, held on 10 December at Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban, have been “selling like hotcakes” through street vendors.
Thobile Mchunu, spokesperson of Ncwane Communications, expressed disgust over the DVDs.
"We are deeply disappointed by this as a company. It is disgusting that people have chosen to take such a dignified occasion and turn it into entertainment and then try to make money from it. It is not right and very disrespectful," she said.
Mchunu urged people not to support the sale of the DVDs, and warned that they would be involving the police.
"We are trying to find the culprits and we know who some of them are but, to be honest, we do not even know where to start. We will lay any charges we can against the people we find," she added.
The award-winning gospel star died on 5 December from kidney failure. Mchunu said that they hope news of the DVDs will not reach Sfiso's widow Ayanda Ncwane.
"Ayanda does not know about this because she is not on social media and does not read newspapers. We hope that we can sort this out before she finds out because we do not want to upset her while she is mourning," Thobile said.
Ayanda Ncwane had recently thanked people for supporting her during the difficult times.
"I found it fitting to take a moment from my silent mourning and heavy painful grieving to say thank you to you all for showing deep love for my husband. Thank you for allowing me to mourn in peace and in private, as I start a very strange and new journey as widow," she said.
It has been just over one month since Sfiso's sudden death sent shock waves through the nation and his family is still grappling to come to terms with the loss.
This article was originally published in Times Live on 10 January 2017.