Top South African musician finishes high school aged 60

Monday July 30 2012

South African musician Sipho Mabuse performs during the Joy of Jazz festival in Johannesburg on August 2010. Photo/FILE

South African musician Sipho Mabuse performs during the Joy of Jazz festival in Johannesburg on August 2010. Photo/FILE 

Top South African musician Sipho "Hotstix" Mabuse drew presidential praise on Monday for finishing high school aged 60, after quitting the classroom as a teenager in the 1960s.

The "Burn Out" hit maker had signed up for government-run adult education classes last year at a school near his home in Soweto township outside Johannesburg.

"I needed my #matric to feel complete even with all my musical success .45 years out of class is no childs play," he wrote on Twitter on Monday.

Earning his nickname from early drumming skills, the multi-instrumentalist Mabuse has performed with the likes of Paul Simon and Percy Sledge.

President Jacob Zuma praised his pass as an "amazing milestone at his age".

"You are indeed an inspiration to all of us by showing us that one is never too old for education. We admire your tenacity, discipline and your zeal to succeed and wish you well in all your future endeavours," Zuma said in a statement.

After being informed of his results on Friday, Mabuse is now eyeing further studies in anthropology and is drawing interest from universities from around the country.

"Now he's being inundated by universities who want him as a student," his manager Martin Myers told AFP.