By Ngoni Muzofa
Big Brother Stargame evictee, Maneta Mazanhi, looks good and she knows it. The vivacious 21-year old has been keen to “set the record straight” with the local media after her acrimonious exit from the reality show.
Her interview with IndependentXtra this week was no exception as she sought to charm her way out of the sticky situation she finds herself after peeving fans of the show. Her charm offensive seems to have worked if the joke doing the rounds about Maneta “turning” erstwhile hostile entertainment journalists is anything to go by.
They are now eating out of the palm of her hand, so the saying goes, and it isn’t difficult to figure out why. “I love being back home,” asserts the 21-year Bulawayan who, from the onset, was keen to shrug off the unpatriotic tag that has characterised her stay in the house.
“I was labelled as unpatriotic because I did not associate with Roki. But I want to clarify that I am not anti-Zimbabwe as some people claim.”
While apologising for the scuffle which led to their expulsion from the house, Maneta blames her compatriot’s relentless romantic overtures for their poor relations. She and Roki had promised to have “each other’s back” in the plane to Johannesburg before the inception of the show.
That was not to be, however, since “Roki did not abide by our previous arrangement”. Roki’s advances, which she says were not reciprocated, resulted in their rollercoaster relationship which ultimately led to their bust-up.
“I didn’t know that by rebuffing his advances he would get hurt or feel rejected and end up being hostile towards me. Every time we would reconcile he would start to pursue me again and I was forced to go back to our stalemate situation.”
On her own flirting with Ghanaian model Keitta, Maneta seemed taken aback offering a meek “I was just playing around”.
Maneta was also eager to clarify instances in which she was “misquoted”, chief among them that Zimbabweans are illiterate. In her defence she was only referring to Roki who in turn “blew it out of all proportion” saying she was referring to all Zimbabweans. “I know Zimbabwe has one of the highest literacy rates in Africa,” she states.
As for media reports that she had claimed to be dating businessman and socialite, Wicknell Chivayo, Maneta was categorical: “I have never seen him, I have never met him and I don’t even know him. I still don’t know what he does.”
Asked about her alleged abuse of the Queen’s English in the house, Maneta dismissed her naysayers as people only trying to “pull me down”. Some have set up a Facebook page, she says, attributing some words to her most of which she didn’t even say.
Maneta has also been quite taken by the diss song Taneta naManeta sung by comedian Ghoridhe and Victor Dee. “It’s actually a nice song,” she quips. “I was actually bobbing my head when I first heard it.” It is their opinion after all and they are entitled to it, says the seemingly unperturbed Maneta.
Her intention in being a Big Brother Stargame housemate was to “put her name out there”, a goal which she said was achieved but not in the way she expected. “Just like every other plan which goes wrong, this one did,” she chuckles.
Maneta now tips Malawian Wati or South African Keegan as the likely winners of the US$300 000 prize since she is of the opinion they both have a strong fan base. She has since “reconciled” with Roki after apologising to him on Monday saying: “It was very cordial and we have both moved on.”
Modesty is clearly not one of her virtues as she claims to be “talented in a number of things”. “You haven’t seen the last of me,” Maneta asserts. A duet with Roki is on the cards, we are told, and they are already “working on something”. “I was playing the game; it’s a game after all,” was her refrain and she is clearly sticking to it. Zimbabwe Independent