Category Archives: Mzansi celebrities

Police release Simphiwe Dana after ex-fiancé laid assault counter-charges

Musician Simphiwe Dana spent some time in police holding cells on Wednesday after handing herself over to the Norwood police station in Johannesburg.

In a statement released via civil society organisation Wise4Afrika on Friday, Dana said she decided to hand herself over after her ex-fiancé laid assault and crimen injuria counter-charges against her.

She said the prosecutor declined to prosecute her and dismissed the counter-charges as “flimsy.”

‘Re-victimisation of victims’

Dana alleged that her then-fiancé physically attacked her on 27 December, 2019 and threatened her against laying charges against him.

She nevertheless laid assault and intimidation charges against him on 30 December and shared the details on social media. Her ex-partner then filed the counter-charges earlier this week.

The popular singer said, “My experience has been a disturbing revelation about how the criminal justice system can be manipulated to re-victimise and harass victims of intimate-partner abuse.

“There appears to be an increasing trend of abusers laying counter-assault charges against their victims as an intimidation tactic.”

Dana to pursue case

Dana said her holding cell was “full of domestic violence survivors whose partners had laid counter-charges.”

She described this as a bullying and intimidation tactic used by abusers to escape accountability.

Best known for her 2009 hit track Zandisile, Dana vowed to pursue her case against her ex-fiancé and see it “through to the end.”

In an Instagram post in December, she revealed that her ex-partner had boasted that he had a friend in the police service “who runs the province.”

She added, “I was intended to marry him. I don’t play that game. In a world where we have sleepless nights for our daughters, a man threatening me in this way will have all my wrath. His name is Leshoto Itsweng.”

Dana stated that she would not conduct any further media interviews on the matter. Itsweng has not publicly commented on the case.

Ntsiki Mazwai: If Malema was black-conscious, he wouldn't wear Gucci

Poet and musical artist Ntsiki Mazwai has taken a swipe at Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) leader Julius Malema, accusing him of not being “black-conscious.”

In a video on Twitter on Friday, Mazwai said Malema wouldn’t wear Gucci and Louis Vuitton clothes if he was an adherent of the Black Consciousness movement associated with the late anti-apartheid leader Steve Biko.

She said, “Julius Malema is not woke. He’s not black-conscious. He is definitely a bully, he’s a man who wields a lot of power, and he’s thriving in our communities because he’s the type of man that Christianity has created.”

‘Not what Biko stood for’

Mazwai said if the EFF leader was black conscious, his party wouldn’t have expelled former leaders such as Andile Mngxitama, who is now leader of the Black First Land First movement.

She added, “He wouldn’t be adorned in Gucci and Louis Vuitton because that’s not what Black Consciousness is, it’s not what Biko stood for, it’s not what [Pan-Africanist Congress leader Robert) Sobukwe stood for.

“So you can stand up for your leader as a leader, but when I say I’m more black-conscious than Julius Malema, you can’t argue that.

“Julius Malema is more about securing the bag. He’s not about liberating anybody else. If he was, he would be investing in things that uplift the Black community, [but] he’s not. He’s investing in German cars, he’s investing in living in expensive houses and wearing expensive clothes.”

On Julius Malema’s wife Mantwa

Mazwai also claimed Malema’s wife, Mantwa Matlala-Malema, isn’t the “black-consciousness” model woman.

She said, “If he was black-conscious, you would even see the type of woman he has. He would have a very strong-willed, natural woman next to him.

“And I’m not dissing his wife or anything; I think she’s a lovely lady, but I don’t think that she’s the Black Consciousness model.”

Malema has not yet reacted to Mazwai’s broadside. However, the two have had ru-ins on social media in the past.

In 2017, Malema hit back at Mazwai’s similar claims. He tweeted, “I don’t need an endorsement of any failed poet to succeed. Politics is my game and I know it. At least I’m good at what I’m doing unlike you.”

In another tweet, he added, “Tweeting about Juju all the time and not about your work or profession, as if Julius is your job description. I don’t need you or [your] friends.”

'She married madness:' Malema's tribute to Mantwa on their 5th anniversary

Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) leader Julius Malema has paid a heartwarming tribute to his wife Mantwa Matlala-Malema on their fifth wedding anniversary.

Writing on Instagram and Twitter on Friday, Malema said his wife is “perfect and married madness.”

He wrote, “Today is officially 5 years and still going strong. The beauty of making your girlfriend a wife, love you, Mama of the boys. She’s perfect and married madness; we thank you for being brave, my friend.”

Private wedding

The couple got married at a two-day private ceremony on 27 December, 2014 in Seshego, Limpopo, where they both hail from.

Malema and Matlala-Malema have two sons together, Munzhedzi and Kopano, as well as Ratanang, an older son from Malema’s previous relationship.

Although Matlala-Malema appears not to have a public social media profile, his fiery politician husband is not shy to share their photos on social media.

The two attended celebrity couple Somizi Mhlongo and Mohale Motaung’s traditional wedding in September and Malema shared the pictures on Instagram.

‘Inform Stratcom’

Besides the newly weds, they posed for photos with several other celebrities such as entertainer Khanyi Mbau and star athlete Caster Semenya.

Also in September, Malema poked fun at sections of the media by posting photos of himself and his wife at a wedding.

He accompanied them with the caption, “The Parents of the boys; playing with other kids. You can inform #Stratcom to come and download. Congratulations #PotlakiWedsTumi.”

The EFF leader has repeatedly dismissed some media houses and journalists as “Stratcom.”

It’s a reference to the infamous apartheid’s “strategic communications” propaganda machinery that targeted certain anti-apartheid leaders such as the late Winnie Madikizela-Mandela.

In December 2018, he expressed concern for Matlala-Malema’s safety after author Jacques Pauw tweeted the address of the house she was renting from cigarette kingpin Adriano Mazzotti.

Khaya Mthethwa and wife Ntando to divorce just 3 weeks after 2nd anniversary

Former Miss South Africa Ntandoyenkosi Kunene-Mthethwa has announced the she and her husband, gospel singer Khaya Mthethwa, have decided to divorce.

Kunene-Mthethwa, 27, made the announcement via Instagram on Tuesday morning, just three weeks after marking their second wedding anniversary in another Instagram post.

She wrote, “In the last few days, my husband and I have had in-depth discussions about our marriage and our young family challenges.”

‘Out of community of property’

“On Sunday we met my in-laws and informed them of our mutual decision for us to amicably file for divorce,” she added.

Kunene-Mthethwa said they had informed their respective families on Sunday about their decision.

She will subsequently move from Mthethwa’s home in Durban back to her Mpumalanga home along with their son.

The former beauty pageant said she and Mthethwa, 32, got married out of community of property and will therefore keep their respective assets.

‘Not asking for child maintenance’

She added, “We are blessed with a son that we both love and will continue to do so. I will have custody of our son but at all times his father shall have unrestricted access so that he can play his fatherly role as we co-parent.”

Kunene-Mthethwa said she will not approach a court of law for Mthethwa to pay child maintenance because “I strongly believe that no court should have to force a parent to help raise his or her loving and innocent child.”

She said she and her husband will not be commenting further, adding, “We agreed to handle our divorce amicably, with mutual respect and no contest. Khaya and I will remain friends.”

Just three weeks ago, Kunene-Mthethwa posted a picture of herself and Mthethwa on Instagram to mark their second wedding anniversary.

She accompanied the photo with the caption, “Grace carried us here and by grace we will carry on. Happy 2nd Anniversary my love.”

Mthethwa also posted a similar message on Instagram, “2*12*17 It’s been two amazing years with you @mthethwa_ntando. Happy anniversary babe.”

The couple were also featured on Channel24 in September when Mthethwa heaped praise on Kunene-Mthethwa as a “superwoman, caring and a detailed planner.”

News of their divorce has therefore caught many of their fans by surprise. Mthethwa has not commented publicly so far.

Gatvol AKA is 'officially done with ANC' after 'nightmare' experience with SAA

Rapper AKA has declared that he’s “officially done” with the African National Congress (ANC) until further notice.

In a series of tweets on Sunday, AKA expressed his frustration after experiencing a delay with a South African Airways (SAA) flight from Zimbabwe.

“Listen!!!! @flysaa is an absolute nightmare!!!! Left Harare at 1pm, just landed in JHB at 18:00 … Total disorganisation!!!!! Total crisis!!!!” he wrote in his first tweet.

‘We need options’

AKA then suggested that state-owned enterprises (SOEs) should be done away with as soon as possible.

He wrote, “We need options!!!!!! State-owned enterprises in 2020?!!!!!?! No ways!!!!!!! Disgusting!!!!!! I am officially done with the ANC until further notice.”

The Fela in Versace hitmaker said the ANC “as it currently exists is done,” adding that “these fat old guys are done.”

He further tweeted, “If the ANC doesn’t embrace young people and put them in positions of power SOON … we are TOTALLY DONE.”

Fikile Mbalula replies

The popular rapper wasn’t finished, “From today onward I distance myself from ALL political parties … I am now officially a free agent.”

AKA’s tweets caught the attention of Transport Minister and ANC National Executive Committee (NEC) member Fikile Mbalula, who came to the ANC’s defence.

He replied, “I hear and share your frustration. We will make time to engage I wouldn’t want us to talk past each other. But I can assure you things will change for [the] better.”

This isn’t the first time a celebrity has expressed political views after experiencing frustration at the hands of SAA.

Earlier this month, rapper Sho Madjozi blamed “mass looting” under former President Jacob Zuma’s administration for an eight-hour SAA flight delay she had experienced.

In response to a fan’s query about what had caused the delay, she replied, “Business rescue on SAA my friend. But if you wanna go deeper, it’s because of mass looting of state funds under JZ [Jacob Zuma].”

eNCA's Kanthan Pillay apologises to Samkele Maseko, SABC for "rats" tweet

eNCA‘s senior manager Kanthan Pillay has apologised to political reporter Samkele Maseko, the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC), e-Media Investments and the public for his now-infamous “rats” tweet.

In a statement on Thursday afternoon, Pillay said, “I hereby express my unreserved apology to all that were offended by my irresponsible and ill-conceived statement on Twitter, posted on Tuesday, 17 December, 2019.

“I deeply regret the statement I made and retract it in its entirety.”

‘Action taken in haste’

He said posting the tweet was an action he took “in haste and without thinking,” thus placing his employer, colleagues, family and friends “in a most embarrassing position.”

Pillay added, “I accept that my actions were irresponsible and unbecoming of a Senior Manager in any newsroom.

“The statement I made is unacceptable and rightfully rebuked by all concerned. In the next few days, the matter will be further discussed and investigated, and whatever the outcome will be binding on me.

“I regret having been drawn into a Twitter war and I ask for your understanding with the knowledge that I [am] deeply remorseful of my actions.”

The infamous ‘rats’ tweet

Pillay sparked controversy on Tuesday when he tweeted, “Rats swimming towards a sinking ship. #EarlyXmasGift.”

He posted it on the same say Maseko announced his abrupt departure from eNCA. Maseko later tweeted that had Pillay refused to allow him to serve a 30-day notice period upon handing in his resignation letter.

On Wednesday, he accused Pillay of throwing him out of the eNCA building “like a dog” and “censoring political talk.

Maseko tweeted, “Do you want me to speak about how you instructed that @MYANC MP Bongani Bongo be censored by removing all the allegations he made at Minister Pravin Gordhan?”

Other prominent figures in the media industry, such as radio presenters Thando Thabethe and DJ Fresh, also accused Pillay of being “arrogant” and “a bully.”

The Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) also called for a boycott of eNCA in the wake of the allegations.

The South African National Editors’ Forum (SANEF) issued a statement expressing concern at “allegations of editorial interference in the newsroom at eNCA.”

'A bully:' Thando Thabethe, DJ Fresh make more claims against eNCA's Kanthan Pillay

Popular radio personalities Thando Thabethe and DJ Fresh have made more claims of mistreatment at the hands of eNCA‘s senior executive Kanthan Pillay.

In a tweet on Wednesday, DJ Fresh wrote, “His becoming hands on at YFM was the reason I jumped ship, and why it was so easy to leave!!! He is not a nice person at all…”

He also replied to a tweet by former Public Protector Thuli Madonsela on Thursday and wrote, “Shall speak for myself … that man has zero emotional and social agility! Narcissistic… A bully…. Arrogant AF! YOU CAN’T TELL HIM [ANYTHING]!!!!”

‘Didn’t get to serve my notice’

Thando Thabethe picked up on DJ Fresh’s tweet and added, “Didn’t get to serve my notice at Y or even do 1 more show after letting them know I got offered a show on 5, got told leave immediately!!! Further got told to leave Club808 immediately.”

The controversy surrounding Pillay was sparked by political reporter Samkele Maseko, who claimed Pillay refused to allow him to serve his 30-day notice period after handing in his resignation on Tuesday.

Maseko also accused Pillay of censorship,”“Do you want me to speak about how you instructed that @MYANC MP Bongani Bongo be censored by removing all the allegations he made at Minister Pravin Gordhan?

“What happened to a simple journalism principle of two sides to a story? Getting both parties to answer for themselves?”

Yet more claims emerge

Sunday Times journalist Qaanitah Hunter also recounted her experience of interacting with Pillay, who is also the founder the Capitalist Party of South Africa, also known as “Purple Cow.”

She tweeted, “Not long ago I was doing an interview and the purple cow was also on. He fat shamed SAA air hostess unprovoked.

“Then when I was talking about challenges facing journalists he said it was “millennial tears” and we know nothing about struggle. A bully.”

Media personality Leslie Kasumba quoted DJ Fresh’s tweet and wrote, “Oh my gosh I co-sign this! He even faked a whole water case against me, lied that it cost the company x amount and it was not the case.

“He is a horrible horrible man! I never had the courage back then but yea what a bad human being!”

The Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) has called for a boycott of the news channel, while the South African National Editors’ Forum (SANEF) has expressed concern at Maseko’s censorship claims.

Both Pillay and eNCA have remained mum on the controversy so far.

EFF to SAns: Boycott eNCA for its 'racist treatment of African journalists'

The Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) has called on South Africans to boycott TV news channel eNCA for its “racist treatment of African journalists.”

In a statement on Thursday, the party cited a tweet by Kanthan Pillay, a senior manager at eNCA, in which he wrote, “Rats swimming towards a sinking ship. #EarlyXmasGift.”

Pillay posted the tweet on Tuesday this week, the same day political reporter Samkele Maseko announced his sudden departure from eNCA. Pillay has since deactivated his Twitter account.

‘No one must call an African child a rat’

EFF believes the tweet was directed at Maseko. It said, “South Africans must unite in totality boycotting eNCA, both from watching it and attending to its news requests and events.

“No one must call an African child a rat in our country and it just becomes business as usual.”

Image credit: Screenshot from Twitter/Samkele Maseko

EFF also claimed that another eNCA journalist, Khayelihle Khumalo, was suspended for tweeting about its 2nd National People’s Assembly (NPA) from his personal Twitter profile.

“The EFF condemns these actions as a sign of total deterioration of leadership, principles and ethics within the eNCA. In fact, when it comes to the EFF, the institution has become personal,” the party said.

‘Attempt to silence EFF’

EFF also claimed eNCA‘s decision to withdraw its coverage of the NPA, which it took in protest at EFF’s “ban” on Daily Maverick and amaBhungane, was an attempt to silence it.

It also criticised the South African National Editors’ Forum (SANEF) for its silence on the controversy.

EFF said, “Had it been a white journalist who was treated the same way Samkele Maseko and Khayelihle Khumalo testified, SANEF would be vocal and even calling on investigations.

“Their silence must be read as being complicit with racism and total disregard of journalistic ethics when it comes to African people.”

Censorship claims

The controversy started when Maseko announced his abrupt exit from eNCA on Tuesday this week, saying he couldn’t serve the usual 30-day notice after his resignation “as per their request.”

However, in a series of tweets on Wednesday in response to Pillay’s “rats” tweet, Maseko claimed Pillay had thrown him out of eNCA building “like a dog” and had censored “political talk.”

He wrote, “Do you want me to speak about how you instructed that @MYANC MP Bongani Bongo be censored by removing all the allegations he made at Minister Pravin Gordhan?

“What happened to a simple journalism principle of two sides to a story? Getting both parties to answer for themselves?”

Maseko added, “Do want me to speak about how you threw me out of the @eNCA building like a dog who had stolen something?

“How you came to my desk and said I should pack my [stuff] and follow you to HR? You are heartless and unethical. Denying some[one] a chance to serve a notice period.”

eNCA and Pillay have not yet commented on the matter. Pillay is the founder and a leader of the Capitalist Party of South Africa (ZACP), also known as the Purple Cow.

UPDATE: SANEF has since issued a statement expressing concern at “allegations of editorial interference in the newsroom at eNCA.”

It said, “SANEF will, therefore, write to eNCA management to request a meeting and to seek clarity on Mr. Pillay’s position.

“The allegations of censorship against a senior editorial executive at eNCA go against the principles that SANEF holds dear. SANEF, therefore, calls on eNCA to immediately get to the bottom of these allegations against Pillay.

“We welcome the fact that Maseko has agreed to approach Judge Kathleen Satchwell and the Media Ethics and Credibility Inquiry to discuss these issues further.”

Samkele Maseko to eNCA's Kanthan Pillay: 'You threw me out like a dog'

Popular political reporter Samkele Maseko has come out guns blazing on Twitter against Kanthan Pillay, his former boss at eNCA.

In a series of tweets on Wednesday afternoon, Maseko accused Pillay of throwing him out of the eNCA building “like a dog” and “censoring political talk.”

Maseko announced his abrupt departure from eNCA on Tuesday, sparking speculation of a fallout with the management.

‘Disrespect for an African Black Child’

He explained that he had simply left for “greener pastures,” adding that he couldn’t serve notice “as per their [eNCA] decision.”

However, his tweets on Wednesday suggested a far more dramatic exit. He quoted one of Pillay’s tweets several times. The tweet, which Pillay posted on Tuesday, said, “Rats swimming toward a sinking ship. #EarlyXmasGift.”

In his first response to Pillay’s tweet, Maseko wrote, “The disrespect you have for an African Black Child is appalling. You have no sense of appreciation, none whatsoever.

“We are not here to play politics and settle political scores with the EFF like you are doing. Busy censoring political talk and instructing things to [be] taken off air.”

‘Censoring’ of allegations against Gordhan

In subsequent tweets, Maseko added, “Do you want me to speak about how you instructed that @MYANC MP Bongani Bongo be censored by removing all the allegations he made at Minister Pravin Gordhan?

“What happened to a simple journalism principle of two sides to a story? Getting both parties to answer for themselves?

“Do want me to speak about how you threw me out of the @eNCA building like a dog who had stolen something?

“How you came to my desk and said I should pack my [stuff] and follow you to HR? You are heartless and unethical. Denying some[one] a chance to serve a notice period.”

‘Settling political scores’

An apparently incensed Maseko wasn’t done and posted even more tweets, “Listen here and listen good, you may be pulling strings there at @eNCA but you will refer to your family as Rats and not Black African Children.

“Settle your political scores using eNCA but disrespect us for dumping ship led by a failed politician.

“Want to speak about how you canned an SAA story saying a journalist is an imbongi [poet] of the workers, wanting journalists to find faults with workers at all costs whilst protecting bosses?”

Pillay has not yet responded to Maseko’s tweets. He is the founder and a leader of the Capitalist Party of South Africa (ZACP), also known as the Purple Cow.

His appointment to a senior management role at eNCA, which was announced in October, raised eyebrows on social media.

Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) national spokesperson Dr Mbuyiseni Ndlozi commented at the time that the appointment meant “eNCA is doomed for good.”

Samkele Maseko's abrupt departure from eNCA raises eyebrows

Leading journalist Samkele Maseko has announced his abrupt departure from TV news channel eNCA.

Maseko made the announcement on Tuesday afternoon via Twitter, taking many of his followers by surprise.

He wrote, “Today my Journey with @eNCA came to an end. Thank you for all those who have contributed to a journey that started off as a BootCamper in 2014, later to return in 2017 as a reporter under @NgiphiweMhlangu. It’s a been good, learned a lot. Thank you Jeremy Maggs for everything.”

‘Apology for not saying goodbye’

eNCA has not issued an official statement on Maseko’s departure yet. On Tuesday morning, there was no indication that he was leaving the channel as he reported on an event headlined by Mineral Resources and Energy Minister Gwede Mantashe.

In a subsequent tweet, Maseko apologised to his former colleagues at eNCA for “not saying goodbye.”

“To my former Colleagues @eNCA I apologise for not saying goodbye. Such is the nature of such things… We shall meet again somewhere soon,” he wrote.

The popular reporter added to the intrigue by tweeting, “Yinde’Lendlela.” Loosely translated, it means the road ahead is long.

Off to SABC News?

Sources say Maseko will be joining SABC News in the New Year. However, he has not confirmed this publicly yet.

His announcement sparked surprised as well as congratulatory messages from his followers, colleagues in the media and those he has worked with.

Political analyst Dr Sithembile Mbete tweeted, “Well done on an amazing tenure at @eNCA! It’s been a pleasure to watch you grow as a journalist and broadcaster. Wishing you all the best in your next adventure.”

eNCA news anchor Thembekile Mrototo added, “Dude! It has been such a pleasure sharing a newsroom and screen time with you. Thank you for all the help, the fooling around and agreeing to all the last minute crossings. You’re next chapter is going to be incredible.”

Fellow eNCA journalist Zikhona Tshona expressed surprise, “Wow cadre, I know you said….but wow. All the best on your new journey.”

“All the best Sam, you did exceptionally well for yourself. You have rolled with the punches and remained dynamic; you have made reporting politics so easy when it’s an enormous task with endless calls from politicians. You rose above everything. I admire your unrivalled skill,” wrote Khayelihle Khumalo.

UPDATE: In a Facebook post late on Tuesday, Maseko moved to quell speculation surrounding his departure.

He wrote, “To cut the speculation, this is what happened. I resigned from @eNCA today for greener pastures. There was no sinister motive or agenda.

“It had nothing to do with their decision to no longer broad[cast] the @EFFSouthAfrica conference. I couldn’t serve notice as per their decision.”

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