Kelly Khumalo: The Glam behind Women Abuse
A few weeks ago South African artist Kelly Khumalo opened up about a secret that she has kept from the media – a secret pertaining to her relationship with murder-accused hip hop artist Molemo “Jub-Jub” Maarohanye.
The secret came at a time when there are constant disagreements about Maarohanye’s innocence regarding the murder case. Maarohanye was responsible for the deaths of four school children during a drag race with his co-accused friend last March in Soweto.
Khumalo’s sudden revelation is commended yet raises questions about the motive behind it. This is primarily because of the nature of the relationship between Khumalo and Maarohanye. Khumalo has been to many court appearances supporting Jub-Jub but she recently opened up about the abuse she experienced in the hands of Maarohanye.
Kelly’s coming out is commended but also met with criticisms, simply because of the media hype that came with it. Women in South Africa are abused every day but they do not get the media hype that was accorded to Kelly Khumalo. Drum magazine gave Kelly Khumalo a cover page and a spread to tell her story.
This media attention raises questions on the importance of women abuse in South Africa. The terrible ordeal was turned to “how a celebrity survived abuse”. Kelly Khumalo is like any ordinary woman and for her to get a spread on a magazine for surviving such an ordeal is disturbing. The issue of women being abused in South Africa was turned to become a promotion of her career. As much as the media attention was meant to empower other women it rather questioned the motive behind it. The article provided a discussion of Khumalo’s career move since she has not recorded an album for a while.
Women abuse is a serious matter particularly in South Africa and making society understand that it is not acceptable is very difficult. This kind of stunt only brings about mockery of initiatives taken by women to stand up for themselves, primarily because women abuse campaigns firstly seek to empower the victim to see themselves as a victor without involving the perpetrator. These initiatives seek to show the woman that she can make it and that she is stronger than what the perpetrator made her think.
Secondly, they also seek to bring about justice to the perpetrator. This is done so that perpetrators and the society may see that women abuse is unacceptable. Kelly is commended for coming out but the glamour behind the incident is unacceptable; it is mockery to the national and international initiatives to stop women and girl abuse. How much damage or awareness was raised with Kelly Khumalo’s abuse story? The jury is still out.
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