Times Live, South Africa
30 April 2011
Song and dance as ANCYL bans concert
A Swazi prince is hopping mad after Metro FM radio personality Tbo Touch and other local artists snubbed his benefit concert.
Prince Lindani, 21, the son of King Mswati III, contracted Metro FM's afternoon drive show host to book US rapper Jadakiss and local performers DJ Tira, Teargas and Jozi to perform at a concert which was to have been held on April 23 to raise funds for Swazi charities.
But Jadakiss was the only one to pitch up. Prince Lindani's spokesman, Nokulunga Simelane, claimed that Tbo Touch, whose real name is Thabo Molefe, was paid more than R500,000, but failed to honour the contract.
Simelane said Tbo Touch had informed her a day before the event that the South African artists would not be available because the ANC Youth League had advised them to boycott it.
"We booked all the artists through Tbo Touch's company, Touch Lives, and when we asked for a refund, he told us to go to the ANCYL, as they had stopped them from coming.
"We had dealings with Touch Lives, not the ANCYL. All we want is our money, and if he doesn't give it to us, we will take legal action," said Simelane.
She said Tbo Touch had asked her to contact ANCYL president Julius Malema if she wanted the money back. "I asked him if Malema was his king to tell him what to do."
Four days before the concert date, ANCYL spokesman Floyd Shivambu released a statement asking the artists not to perform in Swaziland because it would be "a celebration of the suffering and starvation of the people of Swaziland by the king, his friends and family".
He said those who did business with the Swazi royal family could not be associated with the ANC.
Tbo Touch confirmed that he obeyed the ANCYL call. "Things were beyond my control. As a loyal South African citizen, there are principles one cannot go against."
He confirmed he had been paid by the prince's foundation to organise the event, but declined to disclose the amount.
Jozi's manager, Lance Stehr, said he would take legal action against the promoters, as his band had been booked "illegally".
Shivambu said Tbo Touch would be discouraged from paying the money back. "That money belongs to the people of Swaziland, and the son of the king has never worked for it."
In a separate development, the Southern Africa Report says the concert lost a total of more than E15 million (US$2.7 million).