Meet Lee – the local leather man

2017-04-26 06:02
 Photo: tania sandbergAshley Kuzwayo (left) and Lee Gehehi at Lee’s Leather Works.

Photo: tania sandbergAshley Kuzwayo (left) and Lee Gehehi at Lee’s Leather Works.

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

THEY say every town needs a butcher, a baker, and a candlestick maker… I would like to add to that list a leather shoe fixer.

As a journalist I am always on my feet and heavy on shoes, and was it not for Lee Gehehi, I would have to go barefoot.

Gehehi fixed my same pair of shoes a couple of times, before I move the next pair. He has replaced the Velcro on my children’s school shoes and the zips of countless handbags, that are so badly made these days.

He had also fixed countless leather belts and leather jackets since we first came to town. There are few who have his skill and humility when it comes to business.

Gehehi immigrated to South Africa in 1992 and started his business, Lee’s Leather Works in Amanzimtoti in 1996.

The business is celebrating its 21st year at the same place it was started, in the Amanzimtoti CBD, next to the car wash, opposite the post office).

Gehehi has two secrets to success, the first is “be passionate about what you do” and the second ”mind the way in which you speak to your customers”.

“It is all about respect, don’t ever undermine respect,” he says.

The leather expert said he fixes anything from shoes to car seats, car canopies and zips.

The fact that his business has grown, but he has remained at the same premises, makes him affordable and easy to find.

Growth came in the form of a new business partner and Ashley Kuzwayo has been his business partner for many years.

“He is South African and I consider him family. I am very happy with my business and where it is. I am well known and when I move from here, it means God called,” Gehehi said. Gehehi’s other passion is farming. He rents a house in Toti and last year did well with his chickens and vegetables.

“This year has simply been too busy,” he added.

He also loves reading magazines and newspapers, with Drum being his favourite.

“I like listening to gospel a lot. I love having pap and meat or fish, which I buy,” he said.

According to Gehehi, life is good, and he thanks the community for all the support through the years.

“It is because of them that I am still here.”

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Inside News24

Partner Content
How data is changing investments

Technological disruption is rife in many spheres of business and given the quantity of data available, it’s no surprise that the way in which asset managers work is also changing fast.

Behind the sparkle

Alluring, beautiful and timeless - diamonds are some of the most sought after gems in the world and are a true testament of everlasting brilliance. Let us take you behind the sparkle to show you the history behind this coveted jewel.


Fascinating facts about dogs

Think you know a lot about dogs? How many of these facts do you know?



Perfectly captured cat snapchats!
Fascinating facts about dogs
Out with the old dog, in with the new
Play with your pet when you're not at home
Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.