The Arusha Times

Issue 00549

Jan 10 - 16, 2009

issn 0856 - 9135 

Local News

Arusha singer dies in Jerusalem
He collapsed at a local church playing piano

By Valentine Marc Nkwame

Arusha-based, Pop-Gospel singer, Fanuel Sedekia passed away in Jerusalem City early this week, after suffering a medley of mysterious illnesses for a fortnight.

The singer died on Sunday, January 4, at the Poriah Hospital in Tiberias after falling ill for about two weeks in Israel. Ever since his death was announced last Monday evening the town was paralyzed in disbelief.

Sedekia, who, together with 58 other people went for a pilgrimage last month. He left Arusha in good health on the 21st of December but two days later after arriving in Jerusalem he simply collapsed.

The popular singer who had a major countrywide hit with his second album ‘Kwa Sababu ya Pendo’ in 2001 reportedly flew to Jerusalem last December with the entourage of the Arusha based scripture teacher and economist, Dr. Christopher Mwakasege. However, Sedekia fell ill on the second day after their arrival in the Holy land. The singer collapsed at a local church as he was playing a piano.

Fanuel Sedekia who formed the Arusha based band, ‘Evangelism-Through-Music (ETM)’ in the mid-nineties, is also a well known artist when it comes to leading ‘praise chants’ during local congregation gatherings.

His other popular works include ‘Unaweza’ his first album and ‘Unaweza Tena’ his third album. Until his death, Sedekia’s discography had listed five albums releases though reports have that there were more songs that he had intended to release soon.

Sedekia, who used to work at the KIMAHAMA bookshop, along Col. Middleton road, where his church is also located, has been helping other artists either as guest singer or instrumentalist as well. He worked along popular gospel producers such as Zakayo Diigula and Forgen Joel.

Pastor Mathias Mushi who is the Chairman for the Union of Christendom Denomination could not be located when we tried to contact him this week for comment. Rev. Mushi was among the people who went along with the pilgrimage group to Israel. It wasn’t easy to find Sedekia’s wife who had recently returned to Arusha. She had remained behind in Jerusalem at her husband’s hospital bed when others flew back after the week-long fateful pilgrimage.

Sedekia, according to people who were on the pilgrimage, was rushed to hospital after collapsing. He was diagnosed with among other maladies, diabetes, hypertension and high fever.

Dr. Mwakasege, one of the most respected preachers and Radio-evangelists has been taking various groups of faithful people to Israel for the past three years. The latest trips took place between November 29 and December 6 and the follow up pilgrimage was held between December 14 and 21st.

Last December also saw another pilgrimage of more than 100 people who also went to Israel but this other group was made up of people from Dar-es-Salaam city and its suburbs.

Until going to press this week, there were efforts to raise money in order pay for the passage of the late singer’s body from Jerusalem to Arusha. Sedekia was a resident of Arusha but he was born in Kigoma region.

 

 

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