He hadn’t been working for 6 years, says family of famous eTV ‘voice’ Bongani Njoli after his passing

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Bongani Njoli, the voice of eTV Friday night action promos, has died.
Bongani Njoli, the voice of eTV Friday night action promos, has died.
Supplied/Daily Sun/Robin Adams Media

His family is devasted as it comes to terms with his death.

For many, he was “the voice” that eTV viewers got to love. He did the promos for eTV Friday Action Night and charmed people in many radio jingles.

To his family. Bongani Njoli (54) was a son, father, uncle, and brother who was generous and kind. 

The radio broadcaster, DJ and voice-over artist, fondly known by his friends and fans as Bongs died in the morning of Sunday 22 January 2022 at Somerset hospital in Cape Town following a short illness.

Speaking to Drum, his niece Sibulele Njoli, says Bongani did not get sick for too long and started feeling weak in December 2022.

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“He was not well for a very short space of time. We lived with him KwaLanga,” Sibulele says.

“What made him more ill was being unemployed and feeling helpless. He spent a long time looking for work, but he didn’t give up.”

Sibulele says his contract at eTV ended in 2016. “He worked there for 17 to 18 years, and they did not want to give him a permanent contract, then he left in 2016. But they would call him to do voiceovers here and there. He was not working for six years,” she adds.

“They called him in December for a job but he could not go through with it as he was not well.”

Sibulele says Bongani is survived by his mother, Nomalizo Nozamile Njoli (93), daughter, Thembisa Njoli (23), sister, Nombulelo Njoli, nieces and nephews who will miss him dearly.

“They are not in a good space, but they will be okay. We will miss umalume. Bongani will be buried on 4 February.“

His funeral will be on my birthday and his mother is on the 6th. So, my birthday will never be the same again and just the month of February will be different for us.”

Sibulele will remember her uncle as a kind and loving person. “He was kind, warm, giving, and very supportive,” she says. 

Tributes have been pouring in for the radio veteran. eTV shared their message of condolences on social media. “You never went down without a fight. Our hearts are broken. Your voice will never be forgotten. Lala Ngoxolo Bongani Njoli.”

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eMedia shared a statement about Bongani’s short illness. “Everyone at the eTV family is deeply saddened by the sudden loss of Bongani Njoli. As the most recognisable voice of our Friday Action Night movie promos and weekend blockbusters, 'Bongs' was a true legend and part of the e family for 17 years. His untimely passing comes as a shock; he was in the studio with us in December 2022 for a new movie campaign. But unfortunately, as he was too weak to record, we put the campaign on hold,” the statement reads.

“A part of our history is gone with his passing, but we will forever remember him as 'the voice' - our voice. Those of us who worked closely with him will sorely miss Njoli’s easy-going, gentle manner and utter professionalism. We have reached out to the family and will be making a contribution to the funeral.”

Bongani worked at Good Hope FM as a presenter and DJ before becoming a voiceover artist.

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