The bad press of this week appears to be continuing for “people’s poet” Mzwakhe Mbuli, who appeared in Sunday World as being accused by a 20-year-old Unisa student of sexual harassment.
She told the tabloid that the artist (59) allegedly forced his attentions on her during an “audition” for a movie at a “house in Mondeor”, claiming that he touched her intimately on her breasts and private parts and also “forced his hand into his pants while they were in his car”.
The young woman claimed this happened shortly after she met Mbuli in the Joburg CBD after she had finished a gym session at the Carlton Centre on May 17.
Mbuli responded through his lawyer that the allegations were “pure lies” because he hadn’t even started auditions yet at that time for “the June 16 movie” and the woman would have reported the matter to the SAPS at the time if the matter was real.
However, the tabloid published a number of alleged screeenshots of WhatsApp conversation that allegedly took place between Mbuli and the aspiring actress, who had apparently believed she had a chance to appear in an upcoming movie about the June 16 1976 student uprising in Soweto.
The woman, who has a steady boyfriend, claims Mbuli had tried to use the ruse of having her act out a scene of “seduction” in order to actually be intimate with her.
In an extract from one of the long WhatsApp messages, she writes: “I hated every moment of you touching me, asking me to touch you to excite you, trying to get me to touch your private parts, trying to get me to ‘seduce’ you, trying to kiss me … now what coming from a man old enough to be my grandfather is purely immoral, disgusting and inhumane! I didn’t go to school for 12 years and get to varsity just so I can be fooled by men like you, selling me dreams just so I can give you my body to use…”
The other WhatsApp messages also appear to suggest that the two had been discussing the film and auditioning for it prior to their alleged meeting.
The film’s producers declined to comment on the matter.
Mbuli is particularly well known for his staunch support for disgraced former COO of the SABC Hlaudi Motsoeneng and his 90%-local content policies.