DAR ES SALAAM laid to rest one of Tanzania's noblest sons, pioneer industrialist and businessman, Jayantilal Pragji Rajani, 82, who died in London last Wednesday.
His eldest son, Urvesh said during the funeral ceremony at the family's Upanga East residence in the city that his father succumbed to complications of old age, made worse by a bout of pneumonia. It is currently freezing cold in the northern hemisphere while it is cooking hot in the south.
"Mzee was fairly okay but contracted pneumonia that led to his death," said Urvesh flanked by his youngest brother, Shimir. The late Mzee Rajani's wife, Hansaben and mother of Urvesh, Rupin and Shimir, died in 2005.
However, they are survived now by the three sons and several grandchildren, including a ten-year-old granddaughter, who was last to eulogize her grandfather. She almost moved the mourners to tears when she said she had known her grandfather ever since she was six months old because she was told he used to rock her in his arms.
"My grandfather was a fighter and taught me to never give up," she said in wisdom and courage that belied her age at such a sombre moment.
Otherwise, the gathering at the residence was reminiscent of a political and business saloon of who is who in Dar es Salaam, testimony to the late Rajani's wide network of family and friends. First to eulogize him was an old friend, fellow Rotarian and Freemason, Sir Andy Chande, who described the late Rajani as a man of a great heart and unmatched generosity.