General Defao to be buried today

General Defao

Congolese rhumba singer Lulendo Matumona, famously known as General Defao.

Photo credit: File | Nation

Congolese music star General Defao Matumona Lulendo will be buried today at the Necropole Cemetery in the outskirts of Kinshasa in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

According to a tentative funeral programme that was released earlier this week by DRC Culture Minister Catherine Furaha Kathungu, today’s burial was to be preceded by a gathering of family members, fans and former counterparts yesterday in Kinshasa.

In the press release the Congolese Culture Minister pointed out how there would be strict adherence to Covid-19 regulations g with a limited number of people allowed to attend the burial ceremony.

Defao’s body was flown in on Wednesday last week from Douala, Cameroon where he died while on a musical tour of the West African state.

It has become apparent that the DR Congo government stepped in to honour Defao like it has been the case with many other earlier fallen music icons from the nation famous for its rhumba musical prowess.

The 62 year-old Sala Noki hit maker had prior to touring Cameroon been on a tour of Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire, where he had reportedly gone to receive a musical award.

The burly Defao, who was a great vocalist and dancer, had for a long time been battling diabetes, for which he had been treated in Nairobi before he returned to DR Congo two years ago.

His Kenyan fans will recall how he had spent almost 18 years of his adult life based in Nairobi where he performed and released songs.

 Those accompanying his body on the private jet from Douala included former members of his Big Stars Band Kabose Bulembi and Theo Mbala.

Similarly also in the frontline of his funeral arrangements has been his long serving counterpart Montana Kamenga.

Speaking earlier this week to Saturday Nation, Montana eulogised Defao for having inspired many other musicians through his Big Stars Band.

Elsewhere, rhumba songbird Principessa Eve Namulanda and her group Keco International Band perform every Friday at the Mutengene Resort near Webuye town in Bungoma County. The group features veteran solo guitarist Jose Beniko and the youthful upcoming drummer Yolas.

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