Nigerian musician Burna Boy has thanked Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) leader Julius Malema for supporting his inclusion in the upcoming Africans Unite concert.
Malema has come under fire on social media for strongly backing Burna Boy against South African music fans demanding an apology from him.
Writing on Twitter on Tuesday, Malema said he was “looking forward to receiving and being entertained by my brother @burnaboy here at his home called South Africa.”
He added, “There’s no mascot that can stop him from performing, he’s one of our own and we will protect him. We must resolutely oppose regionalism led by political illiterates.”
‘I look forward to meeting you’
On Saturday, Burna Boy tweeted his appreciation, “Thank you @Julius_S_Malema. Africa must Unite and I am willing to die for that cause just like you brother. I look forward to meeting you.”
In other tweets, the artiste said he loves South Africa but “loves Africa more.” He was seemingly unprepared to offer the apology many South Africans on social media have demanded.
“Let’s not act like xenophobia is not real in South Africa; let’s not act like Nigerians, Tanzanians, Zimbabweans and many other AFRICANS have not been victims in the last three years. Please Let us all do our part to Unite Africa,” he wrote.
Burna Boy and Africans Unite concert controversy
Burna Boy is set to be among headline acts at the Africans Unite concert scheduled for 23 November in Cape Town and 24 November in Pretoria.
The controversy surrounding his inclusion stems from his controversial tweets in September during the xenophobic unrest in parts of Gauteng.
On 3 September, he tweeted, “I personally have had my own xenophobic experiences at the hands of South Africans and because of that I have not set foot in SA since 2017.
“And I will NOT EVER go to South Africa again for any reason until the SOUTH AFRICAN government wakes up and really performs a miracle because I don’t know how they can even possibly fix this.”
In another tweet, he seemingly threatened local rapper AKA, who had called him out for reacting to fake news and outdated videos doing the rounds on social media at the time.
The Ye hitmaker tweeted, ““And @akaworldwide I knew you was retarded but I didn’t know it had gotten this bad. Next time I see you, you better have a big security bro. On Gambos grave you gonna need it [sic].”
As a result, some local artistes under the banner of Tshwane Entertainment Collective have objected to his participation in the concert.
AKA has led social media demands for an apology to South Africans from Burna Boy, but given the latter’s latest tweets, it may not be forthcoming.