Opinionista Orateng Lepodise 26 October 2018

HHP was a legend who did so much for the youth of Mahikeng

Hip Hop star Jabulani HHP Tsambo was a a legend, an inspirational figure and a role model. He died, aged 38, this week. The star from Mahikeng battled with depression.

Dear Jabulani HHP Tsambo

It is difficult to put my thoughts down as I have so much to say about you. Even though you will never get a chance to read this piece, hopefully, to some degree by writing it down, it will make the grief of your passing on easier.

You have done so much for us, the youth of Mahikeng. You have made us believe that we are more than our small city, and that indeed we are powerful beyond measure. You were responsible for bringing hope in Mahikeng. For that I do not think I could ever thank you enough.

You are a legend, not just because you put Mahikeng on the map, not just because you made Tswana fashionable but because, through your music, you were able to touch our hearts and make us believe that we could be somebodies in this world.

I was 12 years of age when I started jamming to your music. Today, 10 years later, your music still has a major impact in my life. It can still bring a smile to my face and make me want to sing and dance, even though I may be feeling down. Your music is timely and it will forever be played and it will forever be enjoyed and celebrated, not just be me but by all your fans.

I wish I could have been granted the opportunity to thank you in person but I guess this will have to do. I hope whoever reads it finds peace in their heart, knowing that you achieved your God-given role.

Now you can rest in peace. Even though we have lost a legend, your family has gained an angel that will protect them. Your absence will be deeply felt here on earth.

Thank you for being a role model and for making me believe that all that one needs to do in life is work hard and fight for what they believe in, even though you had your own demons to fight .

You were faced with the biggest battle – depression. Even though you were battling with your depression you tried to speak up and help others who are having the same fight.

You made people aware of the immense talent that Mahikeng has, which has spread not only throughout the music industry but in different fields. It is because of you that I was able to believe in myself and to write and to touch people’s heart and make an impact on people’s lives.

I appreciate the words from journalist Karyn Maughan who paid tribute to you on on Twitter: “HHP was an incredible talent, and a courageous soul. He made amazing, uplifting music while battling the darkness of his own depression. He spoke openly about his struggles and enabled others to do the same because he was REAL.”

Your death came as a shock. I still feel like someone will come up to me and stop me from writing this letter, because maybe the media made a mistake and you are still alive, but as I keep writing and checking my social media pages, the reality of it is dawning to me that I won’t be jamming with you this coming festive season.

During the past years, the ruling party in the North West has been in an ugly political fight. Your music reminded me that Mahikeng has talent, and that makes me proud.

It is because of you that I can hold my head up high and speak Tswana.

So thank you for the amazing impact you have had in my life and the lives of others robala ka kagiso!

In one of your songs, Lefatshe je, you did say this world would lead you to the stars. Your journey came to an earlier end. You are going to the stars, away from the world that used to make you cry.

To anyone going through depression or going through a hard time, hear these words from our song Lefatshe je: “Lefatshe je ke le tshelang le nkisa dinaleding le ha tsela empalela e nkentsha dikeledi, ha nkitla ka lo latlha ka lo latlharela diatla kea go tsenya letsapa ke ba lesa mo o lefatseng,”

These words remind me that the road is not an easy one but at the end of the day the road I am travelling will lead to the stars. While I am alive I need to hang on.

Thank you for being an inspirational legend. DM

If you need help in South Africa, contact SADAG’s toll-free helpline on: 0800 567 567

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