Former “Backstage” actor and Yo TV presenter Sibusiso Radebe has died following his battle with cancer, aged 37.
Radebe’s close friend Claudia Kurhula Maluleke confirmed the news on her Facebook page in a touching post about the fallen actor and dancer.
She wrote: “It is with our deepest sorrow that we inform you of the death of our beloved Sibusiso Radebe our Brother and Friend. 09-01-2020.
“I’m going to miss so much Sbu Diva😭, our daily conversations, your constant encouragement and you constant care. I love you so much. #RIP. Rest in Beautiful Eternity, you are in the beautiful heavens, rest well Darling. Go bye my Legend. “
Tributes have been pouring in for Radebe on social media.
He lived his life and fought the fight and now he is gone. May the good Lord welcome your soul. #RIPSibusisoRadebe on the 1of January his Facebook post was “I wish all of you peace and so much love. You are one of the beautiful👼of God now. pic.twitter.com/KXKdQSQNnx
Thank you for sharing your art and love with us, watching you on screen and knowing you brought my own vision closer, you inspired, entertained and taught other black children in this country that we can achieve our dreams, rest well Sibu #RIPSibusisoRadebepic.twitter.com/jBns9LmXtU
Last month, Radebe opened up about his battle with cancer since his diagnosis in late 2018 and why he stepped away from the limelight.
The post read: “2019 was the hardest year of my life thus far. I was diagnosed with cancer in late 2018 and began chemotherapy on 14 January 2019. I didn’t anticipate what it entailed, a blessing in disguise perhaps?!
“It was the closest to hell I will ever experience. But I grew up in hardship so I handled it. It was a true do or die period. But I’m not the dying easily type, so I wasn’t about to kick the bucket that easily.
“It was a true test of livelihood on every level. Body, Mind and Spirit were tested and I had the option of choosing. For the first time in my life I had that choice and it was challenging and liberating at the same time. I chose life.
“Lord knows why, but I wasn’t ready to die. So I went through watching myself scratching the hair off my head and the skin peeling off my feet with my socks from radiotherapy…
The rest of the hair on my body began to fall off and I looked on in despair…
“People have never understood what an introverted artist I am, but I am. That’s why you’ve never seen me on the cover of any South African magazine or Newspaper. I have always refused. I am very shy. Except on stage or a film camera.
“Being photographed still challenges me, although I have had to deal with it since childhood as a TV child star and Teenage Soapie Star.
“I have accomplished a lot in my life, for which I am grateful. I am 3 years away from 40, and I wonder what it has in store for me…because apparently life only begins then, and I am looking forward to it.”