A mother’s love for DeMbare

The Sunday Mail (Zimbabwe) - - SPORT -

HE IS only 20 but is al­ready a leader on the pitch and when he speaks he ex­udes a ma­tu­rity that be­lies his age. Peace Makaha is one of the few at Dy­namos who epit­o­mise the club’s leg­endary never-say-die spirit and it’s not sur­pris­ing that he wears the cap­tain’s arm­band in the ab­sence of Ocean Mushure and Obey Mw­er­a­hari.

Makaha loves Dy­namos and was over­come with emo­tion when he fi­nally re­alised his child­hood dream of scor­ing a goal for them in DeMbare’s 2-1 win over Harare City at the Na­tional Sports Sta­dium last Sun­day.

The de­fender was full of tears as he cel­e­brated his team’s opener in a game they needed to win to go three points clear at the top of the Cas­tle Lager Pre­mier Soc­cer League.

“Emo­tions got the bet­ter of me be­cause I love DeMbare so much,” said Makaha.

“When that shot hit the tar­get I could not con­trol my­self, I could not be­lieve that I had re­ally scored such a cru­cial goal.

“I didn’t know what to do, so I burst into an emo­tional cry be­fore run­ning to our bench to cel­e­brate with my coaches. If we were play­ing at Ru­faro, where one can even run to the stands, I think I would have gone on to hug my mum.” Makaha had a tough up­bring­ing. His trans­for­ma­tion into a man began at the ten­der age of 10 when his par­ents, Boni­face and Thandiwe, di­vorced.

Thandiwe would spend three or more months in Botswana do­ing me­nial jobs while Peace stayed be­hind with his sib­lings Vim­bai and Anesu.

“Each time she would leave mum would al­ways say ‘Peace ndiwe baba’, so I knew early on that I was the fa­ther of the house and had to be re­spon­si­ble,” re­called Makaha.

The Dy­namos player has a full plate as he has to take care of his mum as well as pay school fees for his sib­lings, Vim­bai — who is now an Up­per Sixth stu­dent — and Anesu, a 14-year-old Kam­buzuma High School stu­dent.

“Some peo­ple are nurses, oth­ers doc­tors and I am a foot­baller, that is my job and I treat it as such. I am al­ways out to win matches, los­ing means loss of in­come and I hate los­ing.

“The big­gest mo­ti­va­tion for me is the need to take care of my family, they look up to me and I can­not let them down,” said Makaha.

The DeMbare de­fender, born to Apos­tolic Faith Mis­sion dea­cons, is also highly spir­i­tual.

“God has taken me this far. I was raised by a sin­gle mother and you know how tough it is raising a boy in a ghetto like Kam­buzuma but mom would al­ways pray. All she wanted was a good life for me and my sib­lings.

“At one point she pushed me to join the army but I told her foot­ball was my des­tiny. She then started giv­ing me bus fare to go and train with Black Rhi­nos’ re­serve side in the hope that I would get into the army through foot­ball but I would di­vert and go to Devine Academy in­stead,” said Makaha.

The de­fender re­vealed that he fell in love with Dy­namos af­ter watch­ing them beat Mo­tor Ac­tion 1-0 in a rain-soaked 2011 Mbada Di­a­monds Cup fi­nal at the NSS.

“I just went to the sta­dium to watch the fi­nal, not sup­port­ing any team but there is some­thing about Dy­namos that re­ally charmed me. I could see the fight­ing spirit that was be­ing dis­played by play­ers like King Mura (Mu­rape), Den­ver Mukamba and Rod­er­ick Mu­tuma and vowed to my­self that one day I would be like them.

“Although my fa­ther had al­ready sep­a­rated with my mother, he has al­ways been supportive and he is the one who gave me bus fare to go watch that fi­nal,” said Makaha.

His dream was then made pos­si­ble by David “Yogi” Mandig­ora.

“It was coach Mandig­ora who brought me to Dy­namos in Jan­uary 2015 af­ter he had spot­ted me play­ing for Devine Academy against Cran­borne Bul­lets. I was then sent straight to the re­serve side and that’s where I learnt a lot about the Dy­namos spirit,” re­called Makaha.

His Premier­ship de­but came at Ru­faro on Oc­to­ber 9, 2016 when Lloyd Mu­tasa played him as a de­fen­sive linkman in a game that DeMbare drew 1-1 against Hwange.

“I al­ways played as a de­fen­sive mid­fielder even at school but soon af­ter that game against Hwange, Fa­ther (Mu­tasa) came to me and told me in fu­ture he would use me as a right back and that is how I switched from be­ing a d-link.

“I have great re­spect for Mu­tasa be­cause he gave me my break­through and there is no way I can ques­tion his de­ci­sions. I be­lieve ev­ery­one in the dress­ing room owes coach Mu­tasa, he has changed our lives but in­vest­ing his trust in us,” said Makaha. It’s seven games to go be­fore the 2017 league race con­cludes and Dy­namos are sit­ting on top of the rest with 56 points.

There are still 21 points to play for but af­ter last Sun­day’s 2-1 win over Harare City, Makaha is sens­ing blood.

“This is Dy­namos, peo­ple can talk and talk but we know what this team means and what is ex­pected of us. Yes, it is still a long way to go but, like our coach said the other day, we just didn’t wake up at the top, we worked for it and if any­one thinks that we will just re­lin­quish that po­si­tion with­out a fight they are dream­ing,” he roared. PEACE MAKAHA’S mother Thandiwe was charmed by Dy­namos back in the 1980s when Moses “Bambo” Chunga used to daz­zle the crowd at Ru­faro and says hav­ing her son at the Glam­our Boys is a bless­ing from God.

“I was still a young lady when Chunga was the best player at Dy­namos and I fell in love with the team. Back then I never imag­ined that I would have a son who would also play for the team but God al­ways has a way of bless­ing peo­ple,” she said.

Raising Peace and his two sib­lings as a sin­gle mother was dif­fi­cult for her but as a “prayer war­rior”, Thandiwe sol­diered on.

“I had no op­tion but to work hard, the chil­dren needed to eat, they needed to go to school and they looked up to me for ev­ery­thing.

“With Peace be­ing the first born I prayed for him the most be­cause I ap­pre­ci­ated that his suc­cess meant that I would not have to work that much.

“At first I didn’t trust his de­ci­sion to take up foot­ball as a ca­reer but now I am con­vinced be­cause he is play­ing for Dy­namos and help­ing in tak­ing care of the family. He is the fa­ther of the house and we are grate­ful for all the sac­ri­fices he makes,” she said.

Makaha’s mother is a dea­coness at Kam­buzuma’s AFM con­gre­ga­tion and usu­ally has busy Sun­days when Dy­namos are play­ing in Harare.

“I go to church first then rush to the sta­dium to watch my boy, I don’t want to miss a sin­gle home match,” she said.

With her son a key mem­ber of the DeMbare army Thandiwe re­vealed what she is pray­ing for these days.

“Now that the name Makaha is known across the coun­try, my wish is that Peace stays grounded and gets a move to a for­eign league,” she said.

FAMILY MAN . . . Dy­namos’ youth­ful right back Peace Makaha is in­spired by the need to look af­ter his mother Thandiwe, sis­ter Vim­bai and young brother Anesu

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