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Unspeakable Grief: Eyadini Lounge Owner Jabulani Mjey Zama’s Sudden Passing Leaves Friends and Family in Despair



Jabulani Mjey Zama

Just days after Durban restaurant Eyadini Lounge had put out a statement that it would be temporarily closing, its founder Jabulani Mjey Zama has died.

The death of the businessman was confirmed by sister publication Isolezwe with a Facebook post, and social commentator The Instigator in Twitter.

Family and friends had been hoping for a full recovery after Zama suffered a stroke.

In a statement released by the restaurant, it said they were saddened that Zama, also known as Jigga Money, had suffered a sever stroke.

“Due to his health condition and road to recovery, Eyadini Lounge will be temporarily closed until further notice.

“His family asks for your prayers during these trying times. We believe he will be better and back in joyful spirits,” concluded the statement.

Although no details have been given of Zama’s passing, his family is yet to issue an official statement.

When visiting the restaurant’s website on Sunday, it said the domain was temporarily unavailable.

Eyadini Lounge was an institution in Umlazi, Durban, and sometimes viewed as one of the most popular Shisa Nyamas.

Jabulani ‘Mjay’ Zama started his career as a police officer and then went into the tow truck business in Umlazi.

He built Eyadini Lounge from scratch in 2009. The venue officially opened in 2011.

In 2017, Zama accused a business rival of trying to tarnish his image after the Hawks had raided the premises.

“It could be that a business rival or a friend of a business rival is trying to tarnish my name and that of Eyadini, so patrons would stop coming to us and go to that rival’s business,” he said.

Eyadini Lounge to remain closed until further notice following death of owner Jabulani ‘Mjay’ Zama

What was once a bustling nightlife spot for locals and tourists alike has now been confined to the annals of uncertainty.

Eyadini Lounge was a huge crowd pleaser, attracting local celebs and politicians alike, thus cementing Durban’s Umlazi township as a tourist hotspot.

Confirming the passing of Zama, also known as Jigga Money, who had earlier last week suffered a server stroke, the restaurant announced that it will remain closed until further notice.

Zama’s family also thanked those who knew him for their prayers as they “come to terms with the passing of their son”.

A further announcement regarding funeral arrangements will be confirmed in due course.

Member of the executive committee (MEC) for Economic Development, Tourism and Environment Affairs, Siboniso Duma conveyed his condolences to his family, stating the establishment was the most popular destination for tourists and a source of jobs for artists and hundreds of youth in the Umlazi township.

“On behalf of all categories of staff in the department and two of our entities – the KZN Tourism Authority and the KZN Liquor Authority, we wish to express our deepest condolences to the family,” said Duma.

“In particular, our hearts are also with the staff, events organisers, artists, and other emerging entrepreneurs in the entire value chain of the hospitality industry who are now facing uncertainty as a result of this tragic development.

“Every week he provided food to local communities who were exposed to food insecurity,” he concluded.


Jabulani Mjey Zama

Jabulani Mjey Zama

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