Phuzekhemisi Opens Up About The Strain The Murder Case Had On Him, Fake Friends, Financial Strain – Born Zibokwakhe Johnstone Mnyandu on the KwaZulu Natal South Coast at Umkomaas, the musician has had a hard time in the last two years.
The iconic Maskandi artist, Zibokwakhe ‘Phuzekhemisi’ Mnyandu.
In 2018 he was charged with attempted murder of his band member, Selby Shezi. When his then friend Selby died the charge was changed to murder. Since then, the Imbizo hitmaker has been in and out of the Durban Regional Court trying to clear his name.
“I wouldn’t have thought that in my old age I’d face jail time. I was scared and worried about my kids and my family. My music career soon took a downturn as gigs started dwindling. Everything was uncertain but I had to appear strong for the sake of my fans and my family,” explained
“What was more painful was the fact that it was the people I’ve known for years. People that I’ve trusted and lived with were orchestrating my downfall. After this, I’ve learned to tread carefully. I believe I was too trusting which led to all of this, nevertheless, I don’t blame myself for trusting them, ” he continued.
“But what kept me going was the support of my family and fans. At that time I prayed a lot, I connected with my ancestors and asked for their guidance and protection,” he recalled.
Talking about the court case he said: “There is no doubt that the case drained me financially and emotionally. My family was affected because we were not sure how it was going to end. As a matter of fact I couldn’t make any long-term commitments. I couldn’t travel much.”
This year in February, Phuzekhemisi was cleared from all the charges.
He is now back in studio preparing to release an album titled, Ziyangiluma Izinja.
“After the court case I decided to write songs expressing myself. Some of the songs, including Ziyangiluma Izinja on this album are directed at my enemies, to all those who were orchestrating my downfall. I’ve been in the industry for more than 20 years and I’d never experienced anything
like this. I thought by now, people would know my character, I thought they’d know what I’m capable of but I was wrong,” he said.
He went on to say: “There are people whom I thought were my friends but in the end they proved to be my enemies. This is not a bitter or controversial album instead I am addressing issues as they are. Nevertheless, I’m not holding any grudges, it’s all in the past except that I’ll have to be more careful who I get close to next time.”