15 July 2016 – DESPITE being frustrated by two failed attempts to try and get a licence to run his own broadcasting station, former Radio 2 (now Radio Zimbabwe) station, presenter Ezra Tshisa Sibanda, is still heavily into broadcasting.
“Broadcasting is my life and I won’t quit. I still do radio whenever I get time. I also do TV documentaries if commissioned by any TV Station,” says Sibanda in an interview with www.zimsinsa.com.
Sibanda, who commanded quiet a legion of fans, especially during his heydeys at Radio 2 (now Radio Zimbabwe) a few years ago, says that he has established a base in his native Zimbabwe and the UK.
“In case people are wondering what I am up to . I stay 3 months Zim and 3 months UK doing various projects. I still do part time radio with various radio stations in England and I am also a social commentator and talk about issues affecting humankind,” says Sibanda who was also a presenter at the now defunct UK based SW Radio Africa is also now heavily into promoting music events.
Sibanda has been quite busy, behind the scenes for those who might have lost track about what he has been up to since leaving the state broadcaster and moving to the UK, and has a taken quite a number of big names in the Zimbabwean and South African music industry to the UK.
“I am a music promoter and Director of Icons Of Africa Promotions which takes South African and Zimbabwean artists,” says the 46 year old .
“I have taken some of the big artists to perform in the UK like Oliver Mtukudzi, Zahara, Mafikizolo, Sulu Chimbetu, Malaika, Professor, Macheso, Uhuru and DJ’s Oskido, Fresh, Tira, Euphonic and many others,” adds the 46 year old family man.
“Music business is just like all others businesses, sometimes up and sometimes very bad. You can make a killing on an event and the next event flops and you lose all your money . I don’t have artists which l can bring from UK to SA or Zim I only take them from Africa to UK for the Southern Africans living in UK to enjoy since they miss home. Bringing these artists to make them feel closer to home.”
But the bubbly radio personality is clearly unhappy about his failure to own his own radio station in his home country, blames the ruling ZANU-PF party for being partisan in issuing out licences to run radio stations.
“I urge people not to be duped into applying for any radio license advertised by BAZ (Broadcasting Authority of Zimbabwe) because it’s a fallacy and fraud. They will take your money and then give their own person from their party. Up to now the radio station they gave a license is not Broadcasting nearly 18 months after getting the license,” adding that the situation is particularly bad for people in Matebeleland who are now forced to listen to South African radio stations.
“The people of Matabeleland don’t have their own radio station yet they are forced to pay for listeners license, a clear fraud. They don’t even listen to Zim radio stations anymore and now listen to SA radio and TV stations and studio 7 because ZBC and other radio have nothing for the region.”
Sibanda who made a sensational comeback in 2013 as a MDC-T parliamentary candidate for Vungu in Lower Gweru at the same time with former workmate Eric Knight who was vying for the Mbare seat, is keeping his cards to his chest about a possible second attempt in the 2018 elections.
” I am still thinking about it. What made me go into the politics is failure by the establishment to tackle issues affecting the ordinary people of Zimbabwe. The injustice, lack of social care, unemployment & economic meltdown pushed me to enter politics. If electoral reforms are not implemented and the new constitution still not aligned, l won’t take part. I don’t want to be rigged again by Zanu PF thieves. I will urge all political parties to boycott 2018 elections if no electoral reforms.”
The showbiz personality cum politician still has no positive words for the political situation in Zimbabwe
“Political situation is bad, the country is on its knees but selfish, greedy and corrupt Zanu PF leaders still want to cling onto power when they have no clue on how they can resuscitate the economy. It’s a disgrace really how selfish they are, they don’t care about the future of Zimbabwe and that of our children. They are not even ashamed, they travel out of the country to overseas to seek medical help when they are unwell because they have no confidence in our healthy system which they destroyed. What is happening in Zimbabwe is criminal.
“I am happy that people are slowly waking up and doing peaceful protests and demos to demand $US15 Billion stolen and 2 million jobs promised by Zanu PF in 2013.”
On the new talent on Zimbabwean radio, Sibanda says he hardly listens to Zimbabwean radio stations, whom he feels are not up to standard and not as polished as during his days at the national broadcaster.
“I don’t listen to Zimbabwe Radio Stations because their presenters are definitely not up to standard, too many wannabes, no creativity and clueless. I only listen to Pathisani Sibanda on Star FM and Patience Musa on ZiFM whenever I tune in otherwise I only rate the two,” he says.
However his fans in South Africa, who might want to see the very popular Sibanda, have to keep their fingers crossed tightly as he says there is a strong possibility that he might do so soon.
“I come regularly to SA and have met a number of Zimbabweans living in SA but I will be organising a gig or musical concert to meet them,” he says. – Patience Rusere