Hold­ing the reins

Dab­ula has Bhubesini and its peo­ple danc­ing to his tune when he takes over the throne.

TV Plus (South Africa) - - ISIBAYA -

It’s no se­cret that young Dab­ula (Chris Q Radebe) isn’t out to make friends af­ter seiz­ing the chief­tancy in early Oc­to­ber. He dis­re­spects the el­ders, he uses women for sex and he puts his self­ish de­sires be­fore the com­mu­nity’s needs, which can only mean trou­ble. “He grew up with noth­ing and the chief­taincy presents the two things that he’s al­ways wanted: power and money,” ex­plains Chris. Dab­ula is des­per­ate to prove to the royal fam­ily that he is ca­pa­ble of car­ry­ing out the role but “he wants vengeance on them for chas­ing his mother away when she was preg­nant. Dab­ula had a tough up­bring­ing and he re­sents the Ngubanes for leav­ing him out in the cold,” re­veals the ac­tor of his char­ac­ter’s new sto­ry­line.

Duma (Muzi Mtha­bela) was a place­holder while the el­ders were search­ing for the right­ful heir to the throne af­ter Chief Zweli (Andile Gumbi) passed away in 2017. Where did they find Dab­ula? He was a town­ship scoundrel, con­stantly get­ting in trou­ble with the law. He doesn’t know it yet but Sam­son (Bheki Mkhwane) sent his friends to ma­nip­u­late Dab­ula into tak­ing the chief­taincy. While Sam­son has known from the start that Dab­ula is the prod­uct of in­cest [off­screen his fa­ther Chief Sibindi had an af­fair with his own sis­ter], Sam­son is wait­ing for the per­fect mo­ment to worm his way into Dab­ula’s in­ner cir­cle. And what are Dab­ula’s plans for Bhubesini? He doesn’t re­ally care about the vil­lage. He har­bours a lot of ha­tred for the peo­ple, es­pe­cially the Ngubane clan, be­cause of how badly they treated his mother while at the same time do­ing noth­ing to Sibindi. How far will he go to keep his power? He’d do any­thing and I do mean any­thing. Dab­ula also loves the at­ten­tion from women that comes with be­ing chief. You’re no stranger to Isi­baya and its sto­ry­lines though. I worked as a scriptwriter on the soapie from 2014 and the pro­duc­ers asked me to try my hand at act­ing. I laughed it off ini­tially be­cause I couldn’t pic­ture my­self as an ac­tor. I’m used to be­ing be­hind the scenes. They were per­sis­tent and I’m glad that they talked me into it – now I get to be the chief of Bhubesini. What’s been an eye-opener for you that you didn’t re­alise as a scriptwriter? Act­ing re­ally isn’t as easy as it seems or peo­ple think it is. You don’t just show up and act out what is on the script. The cast study their char­ac­ters to the small­est de­tail and that is so im­pres­sive.

Dab­ula is en­joy­ing ev­ery minute of be­ing chief.

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