The Presidency has announced that the late Free State Stars founding father and boss, Mike Liphapang Mokoena, has been accorded a Special Provincial Official Funeral Category 2.
President Cyril Ramaphosa has instructed that the national flag fly at half-mast in the Free State, on the day of Mokoena’s funeral service on Friday, June 26.
The 68-year-old Mokoena, who was one of the founding members of the National Soccer League (NSL), and long-serving member of the Premier Soccer League ()PSL, will be laid to rest in Bethlehem.
Affectionately known as Bra Mike, Mokoena passed away last Wednesday after a long battle with cancer. The funeral service will be held at the Methodist Church in Bohlokong, in his home town of Bethlehem, in QwaQwa, in the eastern Free State.
The service will start at 10am and he will be laid to rest at the Utopia Cemetery. In line with government COVID-19 guidelines, there will be no memorial service but the family will in due course consider holding one at a later stage.
Despite many South Africans wishing to attend the funeral, the number of mourners will be limited, in line with the COVID-19 rules, regulations and protocols.
Mokoena’s club was formed in Makwane village in QwaQwa in the Free State 1977. He then sold the status of the football outfit to the PSL in 2002 when the league reduced clubs from 18 to 16.
Mokoena later bought the status of National First Division club Maholosiane in 2003 and revived it to what it is today.
The revered but humble soccer boss’s club won the Second Division championship in 1985 and the 1994 Coca-Cola Cup. The side regained promotion to the Premiership in 2005 after winning the National First Division league title.
Ea Lla Koto, as Stars are popularly known, won the 2017/18 Nedbank Cup but were unfortunately relegated last season.
Meanwhile, the PSL has announced that it was saddened to learn about the passing away of veteran football administrator Michael “Bra Mike” Matlooane.
Motlooane was the longest-serving secretary of the then Johannesburg Football Association (JFA), vice-president of South African National Football Association (Sanfa) and the longest-serving member of the PSL disciplinary committee.
The PSL wishes to convey heartfelt condolences to the Matlooane family and all those who were touched by Motlooane’s life.