Jah Prayzah army links backfire

HARARE - Fans in the United Kingdom have been reportedly pushing to block Jah Prayzah from performing in the European country in April owing to his close links with the Zimbabwe Defence Forces (ZDF) which stands accused of shooting civilians.

Jah Prayzah, the ZDF ambassador, is billed to share the stage with Winky D, Jah Signal, Baba Harare, Tocky Vibes and DJ Silence Dosh on April 19 through to 21 in the UK courtesy of Y2K Entertainment Promotions and Impala Car Rentals.

This comes after the soldiers have been accused of killing civilians last year on August 1 in Harare.  

One of the fans, Philip Sibanda, took to Facebook expressing his feelings about Jah Prayzah.

“I’m sorry I have to stand with others. With effect from today, I won’t be playing Jah Prayzah’s music on my shows because of his support to the government. 
Furthermore, I won’t be attending any of his shows…these military touch of killing people. No. I’m done,” reads the post.

Another social media user Jewel Diane Jacobs concurred with Sibanda saying; “I’m with you. This is painful.”

Efforts to obtain a comment from the promoters were fruitless by the time of going to print yesterday but Jah Prayzah’s manager Keen Mushapaidze told the Daily News the Kutonga Kwaro hitmaker is apolitical.

“It has been always the case that people try to associate Jah Prayzah with politics but he is apolitical. The majority link him to Zanu PF but there are also some incidences where MDC leaders such as Nelson Chamisa and even the late Morgan Tsvangirai were seen in different videos dancing to his song Mdara Vachauya,” Mushapaidze said.

“Songs can be interpreted differently and can be used by anyone. Remember a song ceases to ‘belong’ to the musician once it found its way onto the market.”

Mushapaidze took the opportunity to clarify and unpack Jah Prayzah’s links with soldiers.

“He was appointed as the Zimbabwe Defence Forces cultural ambassador after he represented the country’s culture well through his music. People went to town with the appointment because it came through ZDF but the truth of the matter is that he is just representing the country’s culture through his music.

“The appointment would have come through any other organisation. Remember there were so any musicians who performed wearing army regalia but were not appointed as ambassadors. Jah Prayzah was unique in sense that his music represents the country’s culture.

“Jah Prayzah does not know how to operate a gun but his music represents the Zimbabwean culture very well,” said Mushapaidze.

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