Singer and songwriter Bulelwa “Zahara” Mkutukana is breathing fire after the promoter and event organiser of the Easter Special Night at the Underground Pub in Mount Frere, Eastern Cape allegedly failed to pay the singer for a show where she was the leading act.
The Loliwe hitmaker said that she spent her time and money planning and rehearsing for an event but was never paid.
The Phendula singer blames dancer and choreographer Vukani Khoza who was responsible for the booking. “I’ve known Vukani for many years and never expected him to do this to me," she says.
Musician Choco of kwaito group DbnNyts says he was the middleman and is the one who connected Zahara to the events organiser and founder. “Vukani asked me to link him up with Zahara and she agreed to do the gig for R30 000. Vukani received the money from the venue owner and paid Zahara’s brother and manager Junior Mkutukana.” Choc says Zahara was not meant to go on stage without receiving the balance. “Her manager and brother failed her. He receive the deposit but did not tell her. If he did not get the R21 000 that was due, he was supposed to tell her not to go on stage.”
Zahara’s sister Bandezwa says she is distraught as she is a breadwinner. “The children are back at school. Bulelwa is supposed to pay for school fees and send money home. This is taking a toll on her and really stressing her out because she wasted her time. She cancelled other bookings to accommodate a friend and she even took a lower fee than usual.”
Vukani however said that the singer's payment will be made in a day or so. “We had an issue at our office where a staff member stole the money that was meant to be paid to Zahara,” he says. ‘I have made arrangements to get the funds to her by Thursday. I am in the process of tracing the guy.” Vukani says that he would never taint his brand by not paying an artist. “I would not do that, I respect Zahara, and I still want to work with her. I have also worked hard to build my name to have it tainted because of someone selfish. The money will be paid and I will deal with the issue at my office internally.”