DANCEHALL chanter Winky D and his manager Jonathan Banda were last week arrested for failing to payback a United Kingdom promoter, Luther Pazvakavambwa, whom they allegedly swindled of 16 365 pounds.
The case is being investigated by Constable Mufandaedza under reference number IR 010536 under the Commercial Crime Unit.
Allegations are that Winky D and his team deprived the UK promoter after they bailed out of the 2015 UK Summer Fiesta tour that was held in May. The musician was supposed to perform alongside Soul Jah Love, Shinsoman, Tocky Vibes and Trevor D.
The promoter claims that he had already paid the chanters’ air tickets (4 800), visa and permits for six people (3 200), performance fee (7 000) and hotel bills for seven people (at 65 per room) in British pounds.
A local representative of Digital One Promotions reported the matter to the police last week after failing to reach consensus with Winky D and his team on the way forward.
“We were at the Harare Central Police station with both Banda and Winky D. Banda was held a little longer though he did not spend the night at the station,” said the representative who declined to be named.
“Digital One did not want to take this route (legal) since we know that it has negative effects on the artiste’s image but we were left with no option. We tried to diplomatically negotiate with them but they were rough and arrogant. We even tried contacting the South Africa-based manager, Bartholomew Vera but nothing is coming through.”
According to Pazvakavambwa, the contract that Winky D signed stated that in the event that the artiste failed to fulfil the show and could not pay back the money, he would have to do another show within 12 months.
“He failed to do another show for us, he could not give us new dates or pay us back our money. That is why we had to report the matter to the police,” said Pazvakavambwa.
“The police are seized with the matter and are currently conducting investigations. We have records that prove we advanced money towards Winky D’s aborted tour. But his management is claiming we did not give them enough, hence we do not have a case.
“The police have, however, indicated that the case is likely to be settled at the civil courts,” added the UK promoters’ representative in the country.
Sometime last year, Digital One through its promoters engaged the UK Border Agency to ban Winky D from performing in the UK and other European Union countries over the matter.
When reached for comment, Winky D’s manager, Jonathan Banda, requested for a deferment of the interview.
“Can you please call me after ten minutes,” said Banda.
However, after the requested ten minutes, Banda was no longer picking the calls.
By the time of going to print, The Sunday Mail Leisure had not received any response from him.