Free State Stars FC chairman, Mike Mokoena, has passed on.
The Premier Soccer League (PSL) announced the news through a statement and tribute, posted on its website.
Mokoena, the founder of the QwaQwa-based, Free State football club, affectionately known as Ea lla Koto, was one of the founding members of the NSL and a longstanding member of the PSL Executive Committee.
“Our prayers are with the Mokoena family, especially its matriarch, Ausi Joyce Mokoena, who has been a pillar of strength that propped Bra Mike up over the years.
“Mokoena was a self-made man that took the fruits of his toil, which he could have used for his personal benefit and that of his family and invested selflessly into football.”
The club was campaigning in the now sponsored GladAfrica Championship, a second-tier league, also known as the National First Division (NFD), following the relegation of the side last season.
“The Free State Stars payroll that he created and maintained, sometimes under very trying circumstances, is a source of viable livelihood for many,” continued the short tribute.
“Bra Mike was an epitome of practicality. People do not come more practical that Mr Mokoena lived.
“He shined a spotlight on a little known town in South Africa. He literally put Qwa Qwa and the town of Bethlehem on the map. The economic activity generated by Free State Stars in that part of our country is a powerful legacy of a passionate man that always maintained that “where there is a will, there is a way.”
Mike Mokoena, through his toil, left this world a better place than he found it. May his soul repose peacefully.