Community stalwart dies

2016-05-18 06:00
Photo: supplied Mohanlal ‘Johnny’ Ramhith

Photo: supplied Mohanlal ‘Johnny’ Ramhith

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MOHANLAL ‘Johnny’ Ramhith, the former building inspector in the KwaDukuza Municipality, died last Thursday night in hospital after a short illness aged 78.

Uncle Johnny, as he was popularly known by both young and old, was born in New Guelderland on 26 January 1938 and attended the New Guelderland Government-Aided Primary School up to standard six.
He proceeded to the Stanger Indian High School (now Stanger Secondary) where he matriculated in 1959. He commenced work at the Borough of Stanger (KwaDukuza Municipality) in 1960 as a clerk and remained there in various positions until being boarded off on medical grounds in 1992 with a period of continuous service for 33 years.
He served as building/drainage inspector for 19 years.

After his retirement he served various religious organisations, education committees, cricket clubs and associations, the retired teachers' association (LOTARE), and a number of community-based welfare organisations.
Besides being actively involved in community work, he drew plans gratis for Ashville, Harry Bodasing and Radha Roopsingh Primary Schools, religious organisations - Ramakrishna Jyoti Umhlali Temple, Gingingdhlovu Hindu Society, Hanuman Temple (Nonoti), Hare Krishna Mandir (Lot 14) and Sri Hanuman Temple (Stanger Manor).

Some of his lengthy services were rendered at the Lower Tugela Hindi Patshala where he served for over 30 years as treasurer and chairman respectively, Stanger Primary School (now KwaDukuza Primary) where he served as a committee member and treasurer and held the post of chairman for almost 25 years and Stanger and District Cricket Union (now iLembe) where he served on the double-wicket committee for more than 30 years. The U13 division is sponsored by him for the last 15 years.

In the sporting arena he served as manager of the formidable Royals CC in the 1980s and Dawnheights CC in the 1990s and 2000s.
He followed cricket avidly although he did not play the game actively and was a very loyal supporter of the Proteas.

In the last few years of his life he spent time fishing, being involved with LOTARE as its treasurer and serving on the executive and attending satsang regularly at the Sri Ram Mandir despite his ill-health.
At the time of his death, he was still operating a drawing office at home and was registered with the South African Council for the Architectural Profession. Furthermore, he was a consultant in the building and town planning fields.

According to close friend Jayce Singh, Ramhith was a remarkable man who led a full life.
“He had so much more to offer to the community of KwaDukuza of which he was an integral component. His death leaves not only a void in his family, but also amongst his friends and the people of this town. Go well Uncle Johnny, hamba kahle! You will be sorely missed.”

He is survived by his wife Dhanwanthee, son Ashwin, daughter Jenny, grandson Mishvir, son-in-law Vinesh, daughter-in-law Mogie, thre sisters, and a host of cousins, nieces and nephews.

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