The Bulawayo community has described the late national hero and music icon Dr Oliver Mtukudzi as a character larger than life in the music circles who would be sadly missed by the whole country and those in the international world.

Stakeholders in the music industry have urged the government to ensure that Pakare Paye is provided with funding so that it can continue with its programmes that will empower young artists.

Former broadcaster Sam Mkhithika said those that will be take over the management of Pakare Paye Arts Centre should keep on facilitating the preservation of Tuku Music.

Dr Mtukudzi music was for everyone, and for every occasion.

He sang for the bereaved, those in love, and those betrayed.

In most of his recent songs, Dr Mtukudzi fused jazz with his genre to cut across all barriers.

Cultural expert Phathisa Nyathi and afro jazz artist Jeys Marabini described the late national hero as a humble person, a cultural icon, world changer and true superstar.

“Oliver was a humble man who raised the Zimbabwean flag high with his music,” said Nyathi.

“Ngizwa ubuhlungu kakhulu ngalokhu osokwenzakele. Ubaba uOliver wavulela abahlabeleli bakuleli isikhala sokuthi saziwe njalo. (I am saddened by Mtukudzi’s passing on. He inspired and opened many doors for local musicians),” said Marabini.

Dr Mtukudzi’ s most popular show in Bulawayo was when he performed with South African icon Ringo Madlingozi and sang in Zulu and Shona.

He also collaborated with Kalawa songstress Busiswa.