The President of South Africa, Cyril Ramaphosa, has sent a heartfelt message to Kaizer Chiefs founder and chairman, Kaizer Motaung.
Motaung, who founded the Glamour Boys almost 50 years ago, celebrated his 75th birthday on Wednesday with his side on top of the Absa Premiership and preparing for this weekend’s Telkom Knockout clash with Cape Town City, and was also bombarded with well wishes from big names around the country.
One of the biggest was that of President Ramaphosa, who spoke of Motaung’s ‘continuous contribution to our society’, and how ‘black and yellow have become the colours of hope, resilience, success and the adoption of a healthy lifestyle’ in Mzansi.
Ramaphosa’s statement in full read:
It is a special honour and pleasure for me, personally and on behalf of the nation, to wish you a very happy and momentous 75th birthday.
In doing so, I am joining your family, friends, colleagues in football and your club and supporters around the world, in celebrating an extraordinary South African.
Your life has been one of continuous contribution to our society - from your debut as a football player to your establishment of Kaizer Chiefs, which has become a global brand and a movement in our own country for the transformation of the lives of young people.
We acknowledge also your championing of non-racialism in sport in our country at a time when the state-enforced segregation and your leveraging more recently of football as a means to combat the public violence that affected pan-African nationals in our country.
Through your leadership and passion, black and yellow have become the colours of hope, resilience, success and the adoption of a healthy lifestyle to millions of people from Soweto to Cairo and in many other places around the world.
I also thank you for the special contribution you made to the success of South Africa's bid for, and hosting of, the first FIFA World Cup on African soil nine years ago.
I wish you and everyone close to you a wonderful celebration of your 75th birthday, and I wish you good health and success in the years to come.
All of us wish to see you remain at the top of your game and at the top of life's log.
Head coach, Ernst Middendorp, and his players will now be looking to make sure that their chairman’s birthday week ends on a high on Saturday by progressing to the next round of the TKO with a win over the Citizens in the Mother City.