Saturday 13 February 2021


STARING death in the face, former middleweight boxing champion Mordecai Donga says when he experienced Covid-19 symptoms, he sent a WhatsApp message to his brother telling him where he wanted to be buried as he believed he would not survive.

Donga said the excruciating pain made him believe he was about to meet his Maker. A day after testing positive, the boxing promoter was admitted to hospital after persuasion from friends who are doctors.

The lawyer, who is based in Mbabane, Swaziland had opted to take medication from home but the symptoms got worse as he struggled to breathe. He was also coughing incessantly, feeling a burning sensation all over the body.

“I made peace with the fact that my life was coming to an end and sent my brother a message telling him where to bury me but God said it’s not my time yet. I was in pain, feeling like all my body parts were rising to block my breathing. I just could not breathe and had to be on oxygen all the time,” he said.

Donga said after testing positive he prayed to God to assist him fight the virus and prayer was his companion throughout the ordeal at Mbabane Clinic. He said he felt a slight headache on 5 January which got worse by the day and the following morning he decided to go and test for Covid-19 as the symptoms intensified.

“I did a rapid test that came out negative but I asked the doctor to put me on Covid-19 treatment because the flu-like symptoms were severe. The following day the Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) test came out positive. On day two, before I tested, I tried my usual 15km morning jog but I only managed eight kilometres and when I returned home, I was feeling extremely tired and this made me suspect I had Covid-19.

“I believe I experienced severe symptoms, at one time I was coughing blood and had to be on oxygen all the time although at times I would try to breath on my own, but I could not manage. Eating was also a nightmare as I did not have appetite and was on drip all the time,” said Donga.

He said the attention he received from medical staff and Mbabane Clinic, prayer and support from friends based in various countries all over the world assisted him to pull through. The Big Fish Boxing Promotions director said those saying they don’t want to the vaccinated have not experienced the virus and he would be among the first to take the preventative measure once it’s available.

“I want to protect my friends and family and do not wish the pain I felt on anyone even my enemies because it was bad,” he said.

Donga said he is now focused on playing a role in the revival of boxing through his Big Fish Boxing Promotions entity with focus on Midlands, Matabeleland and Mashonaland West, areas he believes are starved of the sport.

He said he has engaged several companies that have expressed willingness to support them in their venture and is already set on establishing a gym to be used by boxers.

“Once we are done with the lockdown, we want to start the registration process and our focus will be nationwide. We want to see more boxers in action, particularly in areas that have been starved of the sport,” said Donga. Sunday News


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