On his way to his love - Madigage was making wedding preparations
THE late Bafana Bafana assistant coach Thomas Madigage was driving to Limpopo to, among other things, finalise preparations for his wedding to Fetakgomo Municipality mayor Kuki Sefala.
Madigage, who divorced his wife and the mother of his child Conita Mambane about five years ago and then another woman two years ago, was to marry Sefala in a wedding of cosmic proportions in Joburg in December this year.
Sunday World has it on good authority that Sekhukhune District Executive Mayor David Magabe was to lead a team of ilobola negotiations a few days before the wedding.
We can also reveal that Madigage, who hails from Driekop in Ga-Sekhukhune, was driving to Atoks in the same district to fetch Kuki when he had his fatal crash.
Kuki is said to have collapsed when a friend, Phineas Makuwa, who arrived at the accident scene minutes after it occurred, phoned and broke the news of the soccer legend's untimely death.
"That is the woman he was supposed to marry. After breaking up with his wife because of the challenges they had, he wanted to re-establish himself and Kuki was a step in the right direction for him," says one of his friends.
The source, who asked to remain anonymous, says it became general knowledge only after the crash that Madigage was intending to marry,
Relating the events, the source says Makuwa, who was supposed to have met with him at 5pm, arrived at the crash scene.
"Makuwa was so devastated. He is the one who phoned and broke the bad news to Kuki," says a source close to the situation.
A devastated Sefala spoke exclusively to Sunday World yesterday and confirmed that she'd had an intimate relationship with Madigage for about a year, but declined to discuss their wedding plans.
"Our parents hadn't yet been informed about the matter. It is so painful to lose someone you've been spending most of your time with. But I leave everything in the hands of God," she says.
She confirms Madigage was on his way to fetch her when he crashed.
"He phoned to tell me he was coming to fetch me. I didn't have any premonition or suspect anything bad would happen because I'm used to him coming to pick me up every time he comes up here," she says.
Makuwa confirms he was supposed to have met Madigage to discuss the sports academy project he was spearheading in the Ga-Sekhukhune area.
"Unfortunately I went to Polokwane to attend another meeting and we agreed to meet the next day (Friday). On my way back to Ga-Sekhukhune I saw blue lights on the road and stopped," he says.
Makuwa says he spoke to the driver of the bakkie, who was at the scene.
"He told us the driver in the damaged White Mercedes Benz was Madigage.
"At the time he was still trapped in the car. It was a bad sight," he says.
Makuwa says the bakkie driver told them that he was driving in the opposite direction when he saw two donkeys standing in the middle of the road.
He said the bakkie driver, who was pulling a trailer, swerved to avoid hitting the donkeys.
Madigage also swerved and hit the trailer, which was carrying steel pipes.
The former footie and Supersport United assistant coach's car veered off the road and rolled several times.
"Some of the steel pipes pierced his car but we couldn't see if they'd injured him. Seeing him trapped in that car still traumatises me. I couldn't sleep that night," says Makuwa.
Makuwa says after Madigage was freed by a crew using the jaws of life, he immediately phoned the Sekhukhune district officials who were waiting to hold a meeting with him at a lodge in Steelpoort and broke the news to them.
"They gave me the number of his partner so that I could phone and break the news to her.
"She cried and fainted while I was talking to her on the phone. We were later phoned by an elderly woman who told us that the woman was fine.
"We then decided to go to his family home in Driekop to tell them about the accident but when we arrived we found police there and we left," he says.
Asked for comment, Magabe says: "What I can say is that we were jointly working with him to establish Investment of Sports Academy.
"We were also supposed to host Inter-Milan in November for a meeting to discuss this project".