At 106 years old, this Cape Flats oupa has outlived all his friends.
Hoosain Dudukay has lived through more than a century of love, happiness and joy, and says his faith is his anchor.
The grandpa turned 106 yesterday, but celebrations were kept low-key because he gets tired very easily.
But don’t let his frail appearance fool you.
His daughter Ameena says Hoosain is still as independent as he was when he was 20 years old.
Hoosain was born in 1910 in India, and came to South Africa in 1918 – the same year Nelson Mandela was born.
He attended St Paul’s School in Rondebosch while his family built a life for themselves.
Hoosain has six children, 15 grandchildren and 21 great-grandchildren.
One of his grandsons is Reaaz Ahmed, owner of the popular Good Hope Meat Hyper in Salt River.
According to Ameena, her dad is a very religious man who plans his days according to prayer times.
“He gets up at 4am in the morning for his prayers, he does his prayers five times a day. His also made his pilgrimage once,” she says.
She adds: “My father is also a very healthy person who is not a big eater and he never forgets anything.”
She described her dad as a “humble” man who has “quite the sense of humour” and still plays pranks on his family on April Fool’s day.
The oupa worked in retail and was once a very active person who loved fishing.
Sitting on a chair, dressed in a navy blue pullover, blue formal pants, shirt and fez, he looked very stylish for his birthday.
Hoosain didn’t say much yesterday afternoon, but Ameena says it’s because her dad was “very tired” after an earlier television interview, and of course answering the dozens of calls from well wishers.
His daughter believes his secret to a long and happy life “is praying 80 percent of the time”.