By Zuko Komisa
Activists calling themselves ‘Stop Koffi Olomide’ have launched a petition & campaign to bar musician Koffi Olomide from performing in SA. The Congolese musician was, in March, found guilty of statutory rape of one of his former dancers when she was 15 years old. Poet Lebo Mashile who has been at the forefront of the campaign spoke to Breakfast With David about the ‘Stop Koffi Olomide’ campaign.
“It’s important for the South African government to issue out a statement, emphasising that people who behave this way are not allowed in this country. This can not be a place where people who repeatedly abuse women, are convicted of sexual assault, and other acts of violence against people should be able to come here and make money and be allowed to carry on as if everything is normal.”
Supporters of the campaign have also asked that his visa be revoked. Koffi has also had multiple cases to answer to in France, Zambia and Kenya.
Listen to the full conversation here:
The ‘Stop Koffi Olomide’ campaign was started by four women who are activists in their own right. Lebo Mashile says she belongs to a network of women who care about how women are treated in this country.
Olomide’s performance in Shimmy Beach, Cape Town has been canceled. However, Gallagher Estate in Johannesburg hasn’t issued any statement about any cancellation of the event.
“If Gallagher Estate goes ahead, we intend on making this concert very difficult for him. We intend to stage a concert outside the concert. If you look at the history of South Africa, there’s been a shift in the conversation that relates to gender,” says Mashile
She says we must look at the violent environment that exists for women, and affirms that unless we do something nothing will change.
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