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Fikile Mbalula: Ted Dumitru's life, legacy will be honoured

Ted Dumitru died yesterday, aged 76, after suffering a heart attack in Eastgate Mall.

FILE: Ted Dumitru. Picture: Duif du Toit/Gallo Images.

JOHANNESBURG - Sports Minister Fikile Mbalula has told Eyewitness News the life and legacy of legendary football coach Ted Dumitru will be honoured.

The minister says he had fond memories of the man known as "The Professor", saying South Africa has been left poorer by his death.

Dumitru died yesterday, aged 76, after suffering a heart attack in Eastgate Mall.

Ted Dumitru leaves an indelible mark in the history of sport in South Africa. SA football is poorer without him. pic.twitter.com/p4TD8YLeWR



The sports minister says Dumitru shared his life with South Africa on the football stage.

Mbalula believes the outpouring of emotion over his death speaks volumes about Dumitru's character and how much he was loved by those around him.

The minister says he has plans to honour the late coach.

"I'm now in the process of creating South Africa's first sporting Hall of Fame where all people like Ted Dumitru will be inducted"

There is no confirmation yet of when and where Dumitru's funeral will take place.



Mbalula has described Dumitru as a football all-rounder, an intellectual and a practitioner on the field.

He says Dumitru will never be forgotten.

"Look at the work he did in the PSL clubs such as Orlando Pirates, Mamelodi Sundowns and Kaizer Chiefs. He was somebody who was respected by all in our country and we will forever remember him."

Tributes and messages of support have been flooding in - as current and former footballers, sports bodies and political bodies offered their condolences.

Among those still paying tribute to the late football legend today are the parliamentary portfolio committee on sports and Gauteng Sports MEC Faith Mazibuko.

He was a Romanian citizen but lived in South Africa since the mid-80s.

You've left SA with a rich history of talent - coacheD our best teams and our national pride @BafanaBafana RIP TED pic.twitter.com/w6Kgo4CTMR