Golfers mourn as Kilala laid to rest

28Nov 2019
Mohammed Ugasa
The Guardian
Golfers mourn as Kilala laid to rest

BARELY two days ahead of the Tanzania Open Championship’s tee off in Arusha, golf fraternity endured a torrid moment as Deo Kilala was laid to rest in Dar es Salaam yesterday.

Kilala died at the Muhimbili National Hospital in Dar es Salaam on Monday, according to former Tanzania Golf Union (TGU) chairman, Hussein Kajuna Omari, alias HK.

Kilala used to play recreational golf with a fluctuating handicap of divisions B and C at the Dar es Salaam Gymkhana Club course for over two decades, joining the section from squash.

He joined the club in late 1970’s and featured in squash competitions for over one decade before switching to golf where he found a safe sanctuary until he died on Monday.

Highly charming, socializing and full of jokes, the entire golf fraternity in the country is bound to miss a man, who maintained wide smile and an extensive generosity at the 19th hole enjoying his beer.

Kilala played squash alongside the late Victor Kimesera, Ahmed Jumbe, Hussein Omari ‘HK’, the late Ostia Magombe, Henry Herman and the late Leonard Kameta, to mention but a few.

The man from Sukumaland, who died at the age of early 70s, is survived by a widow (lawyer Stella Longway), a son and a daughter.
Grief-stricken mourners turned out in huge numbers to give the gentleman last respect ahead of his burial in Dar es Salaam yesterday.

Former TGU chairman HK Omari, who is now in Bukoba, said memories of Kilala will linger long in the minds of golfers and squash players as they have lost a true social man.

Incumbent TGU president Chris Martin, who is busy in organizing the Tanzania Open Championship in Arusha, wished Kilala’s family to stay calm and eventually come to terms with the loss of their beloved man.