Mr Tlou William Manamela passed away on 19 January 2021 due to COVID-19 complications.
Tlou joined us at Performance Solutions Africa (PSA) on 13 May 2019. PSA has recently been commissioned as one of the Service Providers on the Anglo American South Africa Education Programme. As such, we were looking for past education managers that were qualified to train and coach school management teams. Tlou was introduced to us by Nthabiseng, whom we had also recently met, as one of her colleagues that was fitting of this role.
Tlou impressed us from the word ‘go’ and we therefore offered him the job. He was clearly very excited and started working with us working with schools supported by the Mogalakwena mining operation. He soon became the ‘go-to’ person when it came to leading meetings and events, taking up the ‘Programme Director’ position. Everyone that had made contact with Tlou (KST, JET, Anglo colleagues) including principals and the Circuit Manager of Mapela, sang praises of a highly disciplined and professional person that he was.
Tlou’s work was impeccable. His submissions were always on time, neat and orderly. When you called him and he was unavailable, you will always be certain that the call will be returned before that day ended. Most men battle with administration, but he had a few things to teach us ladies. He was always organised. When he interacted with his beneficiaries (school management teams) that he supported, he displayed absolute professionalism. Tlou was a good listener, a life-long learner, compassionate, humble, approachable and really took his work seriously. He had great ideas to share with the team and was always jovial and was one of those to always exchange warm remarks at the beginning of every meeting with everyone.
At the beginning of 2020, our management team reviewed the work of all our coaches in this project and decided to recognise them. Everyone received a report (just like in schools) to say how they have done in all aspects of their role. Tlou ranked the highest, but he was so humble and did not even think he deserved the first prize!
Unfortunately, Tlou had to move to support De Beers schools. The Mogalakwena schools set up for a ‘farewell’ for him – I’m so grateful now that they had an opportunity to appreciate him. The messages shared by the principal representative about who he was to them, were amazing!
Now, our scheduled date for re-opening the office this year was 11 January 2021. So, a week prior I started engaging colleagues for contractual purposes. So, like the proactive servant that he was he contacted me to indicate that he knows that he needs to return the signed contract, but he is not well and relayed the whole situation about his health. As usual, he promised that as soon as he can secure someone to print for him, that will be done and emailed to the office. We exchanged some ideas to try and remedy his health situation and he was very grateful and promised to do this.
During last weekend, just before re-opening PM tried to contact him to see how he was doing but none of the calls were answered, nor were the text messages. We became concerned and tried his wife, who also did not respond. On Monday, Mrs Manamela confirmed that he has been admitted but she was also unwell. On Tuesday, we made arrangements to send wishes for ‘speedy recovery’ either to the hospital or their home the next day, only to discover that evening that he had lost the fight.
Tlou… go well to your eternal resting place that you have worked for. The angels must be rejoicing at the calibre of a man they are about to receive. Well, they are lucky indeed! What a man… we will always cherish the memories of times we shared with you and the lessons you taught us by the way you lived your life. We can still visualise your warm smile. Farewell – till we meet again!
From your colleagues at PSA