THE arts and showbiz industry could have likely suffered a setback, owing much to some rather unruly individuals that have taken to social media to wage war against local celebrities, calling on both local and international based kinsmen to boycott their shows for not rallying behind the flopped #ThisFlag shut down campaign organised by Pastor Evan Mawarire last week.
They accused local celebrities of not being able to voice the people’s opinions and rallying behind “other Zimbabweans”.
About a fortnight ago a series of plays that were scheduled to be showcased at Theatre in the Park in Harare had to be postponed and rescheduled given the situation.
Most of the individuals are based abroad, mostly in UK and America and rely on social media to wage their unwarranted war on local artistes that include legendary Oliver Mtukudzi, contemporary musician Jah Prayzah, Alick Macheso and Pokello Nare to mention a few.
Perhaps an effort to sabotage their scheduled international shows on 29 and 30 July in Leeds and Leicester in UK, one Bren Mupa wrote: “Vema band vaya vanga vari zii vasina ku support ngoma ndiyo ndiyo hatiuyiko . . .And tiri serious!! Gore rino munotodya yemarema kwete yema-shift. (Those artistes who didn’t support the shutdown Zimbabwe campaign, the struggle continues, we won’t come.),” she wrote before posting a poster of the scheduled shows.
She then later shifted her attention to celebrity socialite Nare, accusing her of not speaking her mind but instead tweeting other people’s opinions.
“Pokello did not speak but she was retweeting zvevamwe. She was not bold enough to stand in her pink bottoms in solidarity with the rest of Zimbabweans.
Asi zvirinani . . . well done.”
Mupa, whose Facebook profile suggests that she is based in UK and studied Fashion journalism went on to post a picture of award winning and man of the moment Jah Prayzah, captioning it: “Did this dude make any statement in solidarity with the povho???????”
In response to the accusations and perhaps speaking on behalf of some of the entertainers Jah Prayzah through his manager, Keen Mushapaidze said everyone had the right to their opinion.
“Everyone has the right to say what they want. We as entertainers play for everyone. We have our own way of approaching situations.
We will not be pushed into doing something because everyone is doing it. We can’t and won’t succumb to pressure,” said Mushapaidze.
Jah Prayzah is scheduled to launch his latest album in Harare and Bulawayo on 12 and 13 August respectively. Mupa’s posts were met with mixed feelings and comments with some supporting her, while others didn’t. Another who posted a similar message was UK-based model Lorraine Chinouriri, who also accused clergymen of not standing up for the people.
“Two sets of people have been extremely quiet during the ?#?ThisFlag? campaign . . . Zim ‘Celebrities’ and fellow Zim Pastors . . . considering the noise ya’ll make when it’s time to buy tickets to come c u perform filling up FB feeds with your flyers and considering the long preaching marathons u put folks thru to get that tithe n offering one would think you would stand with the people n use those vocal chords for something other than self-gain…Nyarai ???? God ain’t stupid n neither are we . . . we c u.”