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News - Date: 26 October 2019
Written by: Tshifhiwa Mukwevho / Viewed: 2167
A former Musina FM presenter who spoke to the media about the alleged maladministration and malpractices at the community radio station, Mr Victor Hulumeni, said that he had received “death threats” following the article that appeared in last week’s Limpopo Mirror.
Hulumeni complained that he started receiving phone calls, WhatsApp messages and SMSs, which all carried death threats shortly after Limpopo Mirror’s edition of last Friday had hit the shelves in Musina.
“I was inundated with calls from three EFF members who are all staunch supporters of the station manager, Ms Tebogo Selina Phiri,” he said. “They all used one phone number and identified themselves. They swore at me blatantly and said they were hunting me down.”
The voice notes, which Hulumeni made available to the newspaper, purported to have been sent to him by three EFF victimisers, contain blatant vulgarity that also refer to his parents. They instructed Hulumeni to “go back to Venda” because no place existed in Musina for a misbehaving person like him.
“Is it wrong for me to speak out about the problems affecting Musina FM? Why should the EFF members start bombarding me with death threats?” he said. “The three men even sent me their pictures and instructed me to take it to the police and the media. But, really, is this how things should be?”
Hulumeni stated that the worst and most dangerous “death threats” had come from the radio station's treasurer, Mr Jealous Munyai, who said that he was hunting him down, so that he could do to him what would be an example even for other people who wanted to misbehave like him.
“I am not afraid of death, and I am not afraid of any of those individuals,” said Hulumeni. “I will continue to speak the truth. If they want to kill me, they should come and do so, so long as they are killing me for telling the truth.”
Mr Jealous Munyai vehemently denied this week that he had threatened Hulumeni. He said that he was shocked to hear that Hulumeni saw him as part of the enemy.
“How can I promise to kill my own brother – Victor is my brother,” he said. “When my car has a mechanical problem, I borrow his car, and I can continue using his car for more than two days without getting any phone call from him inquiring about his car. This really shows how strongly founded our brotherhood is.”
Munyai stated that the “biggest problem” with Hulumeni was that he refused to accept advice from other people.
“We met some two months ago at the station to resolve some challenges that Musina FM is currently striving towards addressing, as this was a requirement from ICASA, but then he sent in an apology at the last minute, which showed that he was not interested in addressing the challenges of the station,” Munyai said.
“He and his friends had on two occasions disrupted the station's meetings. I told him that that was not the right thing to do, and that if he felt that there was a problem that he had identified, he must rather bring it to the table, so that we can tackle it. Maybe I was wrong in advising him like that,” he said.
Musina FM has had to fend off allegations of maladministration, mismanagement and the misuse of funds over the past few months. Munyai, however, denied that any of the funds allocated to the station by the Media Development and Diversity Agency (MDDA) had been misused. The MDDA allegedly funded the station to the amount of R2 560 600.
“Victor will never get to understand this truth if he still refuses to sit down with us as the community station,” Munyai said. “There are some details which we cannot divulge, since the MDDA contractual agreement is confidential. He says the station does not have a full board of directors – but then, where is he when we hold the meetings to address such issues?”
Hulumeni said he was going to lay criminal charges against Munyai and the three EFF members who are “hunting him down” to “kill” him.
Meanwhile, ICASA's communications manager, Paseka Maleka, said that they were working towards resolving the challenges affecting Musina FM, to ensure that the station was finally assisted in complying with its licence terms and conditions.
Mr Jealous Munyai says he cannot "kill my brother". Picture supplied.
Tshifhiwa Given Mukwevho was born in 1984 in Madombidzha village, not far from Louis Trichardt in the Limpopo Province. After submitting articles for roughly a year for Limpopo Mirror's youth supplement, Makoya, he started writing for the main newspaper. He is a prolific writer who published his first book, titled A Traumatic Revenge in 2011. It focusses on life on the street and how to survive amidst poverty. His second book titled The Violent Gestures of Life was published in 2014.