Don Design at the memorial service of Kiernan AKA Forbes (35) at Sandton Convention Centre on February 17, 2023 in Sandton, South Africa.
- Don Design has paid tribute to his long-time friend, rapper Kiernan ‘AKA’ Forbes.
- The DJ faced social media speculation about allegedly being involved in the murder of the rapper.
- AKA and his friend, Tebello ‘Tibz’ Motsoane, who was killed in the same shooting, were laid to rest in separate private funeral services at the weekend.
Don Design, real name Tshediso Mokoko, has paid tribute to his long-time friend and famed rapper Kiernan ‘AKA’ Forbes, who was laid to rest at the weekend.
The rapper and his long-time friend and former manager Tebello ‘Tibz’ Motsoane, were shot and killed in Durban earlier this month.
Don Design’s tribute followed social media speculation that he was allegedly involved in the rapper’s murder.
“My heart is shattered, and the past couple of days have been nothing short of surreal,” Don Design wrote in the caption to photos and a video of him and AKA over the years. “I am writing this with great difficulty, trying to put in words what you really meant to me. I would never have imagined that I would be putting together such a message.”
He said he kept thinking about and replaying the memories they shared and wished he had a final chance to thank the Fela In Versace hitmaker for showing him “the true meaning of brotherhood”.
“I am indebted to you for believing in me, believing in my dreams and aspirational visions, especially in moments where I lacked such belief,” Don Design continued.
“I’m in awe of all that you have accomplished in your lifetime. Your work ethic was unparalleled. You followed your path with honesty and integrity. I will try my level best to follow the path you have laid for us.”
To AKA’s family, Don Design asked the Lord to heal their hearts and comfort their souls, adding: “Let prayer be your ray of hope. Prayer has the power to transform pain and to lift your spirits so that you may overcome this moment. I love you.
“Kiernan, you have left this world without me, but someday, in my heart of hearts, I believe we will meet again and be together again,” he wrote.
Amid the social media speculation of Don Design’s alleged involvement in the rapper’s murder, Forbes family lawyer Rudolph Baloyi, speaking to Newzroom Afrika, said the family was not entertaining the claims made on social media.
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Speaking at her son’s memorial service, AKA’s mother, Lynn, said it did not matter what was said on social media because she loved her “countless sons”, including Don Design, and her three daughters – Nadia Nakai, DJ Zinhle and AKA’s younger brother Steffan’s partner, Britany. Lynn also expressed her love for Don Design, saying: “I love you, my son.”
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In a press conference after his death, AKA’s father, Tony, said they did not condone the dangerous statements made on social media.
“We appeal for them to cease from doing so,” he said.