‘Cowardly’ blacks are ‘pushovers’
Duma Ka Ndlovu, executive producer of hit SABC soapie Muvhango, has labelled black people “cowards” and “pushovers”, and called for a boycott of Idols SA after Gareth Cliff won his court battle to be reinstated as a judge on the show.
This week, Ndlovu wrote a lengthy post on his Facebook page calling for black people to “wake up” and “lose the chains of mental slavery”.
Cliff was fired earlier this month after tweeting that “people really do not understand free speech” in response to KwaZulu-Natal estate agent Penny Sparrow calling black people “monkeys”.
Ndlovu, a playwright and the producer of toprated TV dramas Uzalo and Isibaya, told City Press this week that his statement wasn’t about Cliff in particular, but instead about the “state of white and black people in our country”.
“Gareth stood publicly defending a white woman’s right to call us monkeys. Then he called it freedom of speech. Black people, it’s about time to stand up and fight for what we believe in,” he said on Friday.
Asked if he thought Cliff was a racist, he said: “Whether Gareth is racist or not, that argument is academic.
“We did not grow up in the house he grew up in; we did not go to school with him; and we are never there in his private conversations with his white friends and white colleagues.
“In fact, [Steve] Biko says all whites are inherently racist. I agree with him. Gareth defended a white woman’s right to call us monkeys. What more evidence do we need?”
However, Ndlovu said black people were unlikely to unite against racism.
“Blacks are not united; they will be divided on every stupid issue you throw at them,” he said, adding that if black people were united, they would have boycotted M-Net. “We should stop watching Idols,” he said. Ndlovu said many black people were scared to voice their opinions because they were afraid of losing their jobs. “There is a white, Indian and Jewish agenda – we need a black agenda. We need black people to decide on the basics of being black,” he said.
In his post, Ndlovu lashed out at Cliff for hiring black lawyers – the attorney Eric Mabuza and Advocate Dali Mpofu. He wrote: “The black lawyer walks triumphantly to court with his white client and talks about a technicality – that M-Net had in fact promised Gareth a contract,” he said.
Ndlovu said it was sad that once Cliff returned to the Idols fold, “we will welcome him with open arms and forget that he defended a white woman’s right to call us monkeys ... We will smile sheepishly and ask to take selfies with him,” he said.
“Hugh Masekela refuses to take pictures with women who wear weaves. That’s the kind of resolve we need as black people. If you disagree with something, you ought to stand up and fight, and express yourself in the strongest possible terms.”
Ndlovu said South Africa had become a “celebrity society”, which had forgotten its values and blackness. History one day will stand up and say: enough is enough.
“Black people, at some point, will have to stand up and defend their right to be called human beings. Maybe even fight, and be prepared to die, to defend their right to be treated as human beings.”
M-Net head of public relations Nondumiso Mabece declined to comment. Cliff did not respond to requests for comment.
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I’M BACK! Idols judge Gareth Cliff at Durban’s Playhouse theatre this week after being reinstated as a judge on the show
Duma Ka Ndlovu
HAPPY SELFIE Idols judges (from left) Randall Abrahams, Unathi Msengana, Somizi Mhlongo and Cliff shortly after the so-called shock jock rejoined the judging panel