Has Chase Skuza fallen on hard times?

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - Front Page - Bongani Ndlovu/Mkhu­l­uli Ncube Show­biz Re­porters

WHEN the late Solomon Skuza sang the time­less hit Bano­lila, he could have been proph­esy­ing all the mis­for­tunes that have be­fallen his younger brother, Chase, of late.

The song Bano­lila was a plea for help in rais­ing money to take a child to school. It seems Chase is the one who was fore­seen ap­peal­ing for money to pay his debts in or­der to avoid go­ing to prison.

Chase was ar­rested last week while per­form­ing on stage and has been sen­tenced to 231 days in prison for fail­ing to pay $2 900 to a South Africa-based truck driver he de­frauded in 2015.

In plead­ing with the mag­is­trate, Chase asked not to be sent to prison say­ing he had been sick and would pay back the money.

“I have brought $100 to­day. I have been very sick and my child passed away that is why I wasn’t able to pay. I just started work­ing and I was ar­rested on stage while I was per­form­ing,” he said. His im­pris­on­ment fol­lows his first brush with the law three years ago when he was sent to do com­mu­nity ser­vice af­ter plead­ing that he would set­tle the debt, but failed. Only last week, B-Metro re­ported that Chase was grabbed by the pri­vates over non-pay­ment by a fe­male dancer in South Africa. To show that he has reached rock bot­tom, there are ru­mours sug­gest­ing that Chase once tried to board a kombi for free some­time this year but ran out of luck. It seems when the con­duc­tor (windi) snuffed him out, Chase went on his knees beg­ging. He ba­si­cally could not af­ford to pay the manda­tory 50c from his Cow­dray Park home to the city cen­tre. Another case in­volv­ing Chase was last year where a busi­ness­woman in Bu­l­awayo con­fis­cated his gui­tar af­ter the mu­si­cian took 10 jack­ets on credit for his band mem­bers and failed to pay.

Long Chase as he is known be­cause of his height, seems to be hav­ing a long list of prob­lems be­dev­illing him. In one of his songs Abal­alanga, Chase even says he was at­tacked by gob­lins in his ru­ral home of Ntoli, to show that his bad omens point to some­thing spir­i­tual af­fect­ing his life.

It is sad­den­ing that a per­son who has been in the mu­sic in­dus­try for such a long time, can be in such a quandary. How could he fail to raise the amount of money that has landed him in jail af­ter be­ing given three years to pay?

For all these years, Chase has al­ways been chas­ing for­tune, but it seems bad luck al­ways fol­lows him. Now that he is serv­ing his jail term, hope­fully this will not mark the end of his ca­reer and also, it should mark a change in for­tune.

Come the end of his jail term, the ques­tion will stand whether he will take up the gui­tar and start singing again. Chase of­ten fea­tures on other peo­ple’s songs, chief among them be­ing Bano­lila. Another song he fea­tured on was Wathathi Mali by Kwe­jani Band that is very pop­u­lar on lo­cal ra­dio sta­tions.

Per­haps in jail he will gather some in­spi­ra­tion from his sur­round­ings to com­pose songs that he belt out when he is re­leased. Fans would love to hear about his strug­gles dur­ing his prison term and what he ex­pe­ri­enced when he was told he was go­ing to jail.

But for now as Solomon sang in Bano­lila, Mun­ditjidzewo basekulu, which is a cry for help from rel­a­tives. Chase is a man in need of help.

Chase Skuza

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