Chitubu: Journalist gets death threats
By Mtandazo Dube
The Sunday Mail Leisure Senior Reporter Prince Mushawevato has filed a police report following death threats, social media attacks and a close shave with angry Jah Prayzah supporters.
The report was lodged at Braeside Police Station after acts of aggression on the scribe following a social media post by Jah Prayzah accusing Mushawevato of unfairly targeting his works.
Jah Prayzah was responding to a routine album review by Mushawevato in which the scribe offered his opinion on the singer’s recently released “Chitubu” album.
“It pains that after putting in all sweat (sic) and sleepless nights for a product that most of you have told me you love so dearly, still some journalist who feels I owe him a part of my fruits, finds it worthwhile to pull down the same project and hopes to influence the entire world against liking my album,” read part of Jah Prayzah’s response to the critique, whipping his “cyber army” into a frenzy.
On two occasions last Sunday, Mushawevato had to escape physical violence from self-professed Jah Prayzah supporters.
The first incident happened at Braeside Shopping Centre.
“I was almost hit by a blue Toyota Runx. At first I thought it was innocent but what they said afterwards had me terrified. To quote one of the guys verbatim, he said ‘eh wangu, I hope wakanyora will because toda kukusota size inokwana chaiyo. Ungatuke Jah iwe?’ (I hope you have a last will because we are going to deal with you. Who are to insult Jah?),” Mushawevato narrated.
They drove off before a stunned Mushawevato could recover and take note of the car registration number.
Then abuse started pouring into his Twitter and Facebook accounts. It was not over.
Later in the day as Mushawevato went about his usual weekend rounds of arts events around Harare, he encountered a rowdy group and a bouncer came to his rescue as they tried to assault him.
“Isu taingoti pamwe majokes nekuti Prince anowanzouya pano. Izvo vapfanha ava vaizviti Team JP vaida kumudya. Takatozopindira zvaipa (We thought they were just joking around because Prince is a regular here. We had no idea that these boys that called themselves Team JP actually wanted to hurt him. We had to intervene),” said the bouncer.
Mushawevato said he did not understand how Jah Prayzah could make such allegations against him and egg his fans on.
“If you do a quick search of the stories online right now or go to the library, you will notice that over 90 percent of stories we have written on Jah Prayzah have been to uplift and celebrate his career. But he decides to single out a few articles where we are critiquing, not his colourful personal life, but the music. It is unbelievable.
“So as The Sunday Mail reporters and journalists in general, are we supposed to only sing Jah Prayzah praises? This shows that this guy is obsessed with bootlickers. The less than 10 percent articles that have not stroked his ego have seen him get so incensed to the point of putting my life and career in jeopardy,” said Mushawevato last week.
The album review published last Sunday did not in any way attack the singer personally but dwelt on his works.
“My relationship with Jah Prayzah has always been professional. I have not tried to befriend him or his team. I have never asked for any favours. Which makes me wonder why he would say ‘some journalist who feels I owe him a part of my fruits’. Zimpapers is my fruit tree, I need no other fruits, so I wonder where this is coming from,” added Mushawevato. Sunday Mail.