When pictures of former Highlanders and CAPS United speed merchant Gabriel Nyoni and his new South Africa girlfriend Monica Nozipho Ramahloko went viral, they split opinion among Zimbabweans.
In a country where the belief that South African women are the beginning of the end of Zimbabwean soccer players is deep-rooted, Nyoni was reminded of the Tendai Ndoro story.
Ndoro used to live large in South Africa, where he played for Orlando Pirates, Ajax Cape Town and Highlands Park until images of the frail-looking striker went viral on social media after he went separate ways with his South African girlfriend.
This reporter, (LM), caught up with Nyoni (GN) and spoke with him about his relationship, the belief about South African women and the Ndoro comparison.
Here are the excerpts from the interview;
LM: Gabriel, you are doing very well in South Africa business-wise after the establishment of GN27 Cleaning Services. How proud are you to be one of the examples of football players who prepared well for life after retirement?
GN: I am humbled by God’s Grace to give me the wisdom to prepare for any anomalies in my life. The principle of not putting all your eggs in one basket sank very well in my brain.
LM: In your view; by what means and with what success can local football stars, particularly those in our PSL, invest, considering the tough economic conditions they operate in?
GN:To be honest, it is very difficult for any footballer to invest in an inflationary environment. But the little they can do is to equip themselves with skills outside football. Skill pays more than education.
LM: The news of you establishing a blossoming business in South Africa has been overshadowed by the fact that you are dating a South African woman, Monica Nozipho Ramahloko. Tell us more about her, as well as your relationship.
GN: We were business partners before we engaged in a romantic relationship. She invested quite a lot of money into my idea and made it a reality. So she is playing a huge role to make GN27 (the cleaning company) a success.
LM: What is your line of thought regarding the deep-rooted Zimbabwean perception that most, if not all South African women, are just materialistic?
GN: I have read about it but never experienced it. And especially considering my case, my girlfriend is the investor. But I don’t think people should put every SA woman in one basket. How many people have been scammed by Zimbabwean women?
LM: When the picture of you and Monica was posted on Facebook yesterday, a lot of people who commented reminded you of the Tendai Ndoro saga. What are your views, firstly on the Ndoro saga and how it is now being used as a benchmark as far as the issue of Zimbabwean football players and dating South African women is concerned?
GN: I don’t have the facts as to what really transpired between Ndoro and the woman but from what I heard, the story is quite complicated. If indeed Ndoro bought a house and cars and registered them in the woman’s name then that’s unwise. It was a mistake on his side. When you bring in a woman you need a partner that a person that you will work with and make an empire together. Registering any of your properties in both your names. Ndoro achieved a lot and I didn’t even achieve a tenth of what he achieved so our cases are different. I am starting from the ground and going up.
LM: Lastly, usually when someone gets into a new relationship, Zimbabweans on social media are quick to say ‘it will end in tears.’ In your case, will it be tears of joy or tears of sorrow?
GN: Everything ends in tears. Nothing lasts forever. Does marriage last forever? Does money last forever? Does a relationship last forever? It all depends on how long it will last, and how much emotional, physical or financial benefit you have got from it.