The lead vocalist of rhumba duo Insimbi ZeZhwane died in a horror road crash which also claimed the life of the group’s drummer on Saturday morning, police said.
Elvis Mathe, known to the band’s followers as ‘MaEli’, tragically died along with drummer Thembinkosi ‘Maviri’ Mpofu after their Toyota Hilux veered off the road and hit a tree near the Fatima High School turn-off on the Victoria Falls-Bulawayo highway.
Their deaths were confirmed by the group’s manager, Bahlanu Sibanda.
Police said the group was coming from Binga, and driving to Harare via Bulawayo.
In a statement, police said one person was killed on the spot and 10 others injured. A second later died in hospital.
“A Toyota Hilux with foreign number plates burst a tyre resulting in the vehicle veering off the road before hitting a tree at the 200km peg along the Bulawayo-Victoria Falls road.”
The bodies of Mathe and Mpofu will undergo a post-mortem at St Luke’s Hospital where the injured are being treated.
Insimbi ZeZhwane, a name which pays homage to their Tsholotsho roots, are currently the most sought-after group in Matabeleland after bursting on the scene in the last five years.
The group was made up of Mathe and Meluleki ‘Brema’ Moyo, who formed the outfit in South Africa before relocating to Bulawayo.
They produced hits such as GPS, Imbulumakhasane, Umkhumbi KaNoah and Imbemba.
Duo no more … Elvis Mathe (left) and Meluleki Moyo made up the group Insimbi ZeZhwane before accident claimed Mathe’s life on August 5, 2023
Insimbi ZeZhwane caused internet controversy only last week after performing at a Zanu PF rally in Nkayi, and then posed for pictures wearing Zanu PF regalia.
In a bid to dispel the controversy, the group posted a statement to fans on Facebook insisting that wearing the gear was not a sign that they support Zanu PF.
“We were invited to the presidential gala in Nkayi, but that does not mean we’re now into politics. Any party can hire us to perform at their events and give us their regalia, we will wear it, pick up our guitars and perform,” the statement said.
The group said they had “always wanted to be hired by the government” but insisted: “Any party that wants us they should call us and we will be there.”