LUSAKA – Zambia on Saturday deported controversial South African dancer Zodwa Wabantu, who is popularly known for performing without underwear, on the grounds that her performance would “undermine national values”.
This follows after Zodwa Wabantu earlier in the week rubbished claims that she has been prohibited from performing in Zambia this end of the week, disclosing to TshisaLIVE that she has an agreement to perform and will shake up without any underwear, regardless of a religious and political leader’s protests.
Zambia is a very conservative country whose constitution explicitly states that it is a Christian nation, in contrast with more liberal South Africa.
“Zodwa has been deported,” the Zambian promoter Lucky Munakampe told Reuters. Munakampe said she had flown out at 5.20am on a South African Airways flight.
The organisers of the show said in a statement earlier this week that Zambia’s National Arts Council had rejected their application.
“The Council stated that… Zodwa’s performances were not in the public interest and undermined our national values,” the statement said.
The dancer made headlines in Zambia when the National Guidance and Religious Affairs Minister, Godfridah Sumaili, told state-run news paper The Times of Zambia that Zodwa was not welcome in the country and was promoting immorality with her shows.
As men and ladies took to social media to protest the decision, the minister denied that Zodwa has been restricted from the country, rather insisting the performer did not have the correct permits to perform. She indeed raised issue with Zodwa’s choice not to wear panties and said that Zambia was a “Christian country” that promoted values.
However, a letter seen by TshisaLIVE shows that promoters and Zodwa’s team had agreed to have her in the country to perform this weekend and had paid Zodwa’s R35,000 booking fee in full.
Zodwa revealed to TshisaLIVE that nothing would stop her from performing in the nation and slammed “hypocrites” who had named her “unchristian.”
“I have signed all the paperwork and I am flying out later this week to perform there. I think that people are just trying to sabotage me and the event. The underwear thing is my choice and I don’t understand why people are so upset. There are Christians who do much worse things behind closed doors.”
She said that authorities were hoping to pray for her and cast out her “evil spirits” while she was in the country.
“I will never wear a panty. I won’t change who I am for them. Maybe they think they will pray for me or make me better. I survived 2017 and I will survive this year. They can go and f*ck off if they have a problem with it.”
The dancer had been due to perform on Saturday in Lusaka at the launch of a music album organised by a local entertainment company, Sunset Sound Production.
The reports come only months after Zodwa was reportedly prohibited from performing in Lesotho. She also cancelled shows in Zimbabwe after an outcry over her schedules shows in the country, citing security fears.