Pa Majiga lead actor Elson Soko, popularly known as Anyoni, died on Saturday night aged 71, after a long battle with a heart problem.
His nephew Leonard Mafukeni said yesterday his uncle had been unwell until Wednesday when Malawi Broadcasting Corporation (MBC) management facilitated his admission at Blantyre Adventist Hospital.
Born on New-Year’s day in 1949, Soko will be remembered for his acting prowess on MBC Radio One popular play Pamajiga where he played a starring role.
Last week Tuesday, the State broadcaster staff cheered him up at his residence in Machinjiri, Blantyre, and donated various basic items and some cash where they noted the actor needed urgent medical attention.
“He has been struggling with a heart problem but just this week doctors also diagnosed him with a kidney complication. Unfortunately, he passed on around 10.40pm on Saturday,” he said.
Mafukeni said Anyoni was “our tower of strength”.
MBC director general Aubrey Sumbuleta expressed shock at the death of Soko who has been the pillar of Pamajiga. He started acting with MBC in 1972, featuring in many radio plays and commercials.
Soko was also being used by various public and non-governmental organisations in their awareness campaigns.
National Theater Association of Malawi president Erick Mabedi said Malawi has lost a veteran actor.
“He started drama a long time ago with the likes of the late Smart Likhaya Mbewe. He inspired many of us. He has left a very big gap. He was old and talented, but when it was time for drama he could lower himself and adapt to any situation,” he said.
Soko, hailed from Mackenzie Village, Traditional Authority (T/A) Sawali in Balaka. He will be laid to rest today in Blantyre, according to his nephew. He is survived by four children and six grand children.