Bongani Ndlovu, Showbiz Correspondent
CONTROVERSIAL Zimdancehall artiste Soul Jah Love ‘Chibaba’ has defended his continuous absence at shows he would have been paid to perform at, saying this is due to diabetes, an ailment which he was diagnosed with when he was seven-years-old.
While some had since concluded that the artiste simply fails to perform as a result of drug and alcohol abuse, Soul Jah Love claims this is not the case as his blood sugar levels will be too low for him to perform.
Chibaba, real name Soul Musaka, shocked many during Wednesday’s Drive Time show on Star FM when he opened up about his condition to presenter – KVG during an interview.
“When I fail to pitch up to a show, it’s usually because my blood sugar levels will be very low. I can’t even give that as a reason because people just say I was high on drugs, which isn’t the case,” said Soul Jah Love.
He blamed the drug abuse rumours on his face which he said resembled that of a druggie.
“My face looks as if I’m a drug addict. My prayer is that God vindicates me and people who I’ve wronged to forgive me.”
The artiste, whose marriage to fellow dancehall artiste – Bounty Lisa – is always on an off, was quick to say only his close family and friends understood him and the struggles that he has been through.
“People who are close to me know how I live with diabetes especially my manager – Wallace, who’s also my friend. He’s seen me through it all, supporting me when I was low,” said Soul Jah Love.
Because of his ‘condition’, Soul Jah Love has had to fire most of his managers who would have failed to get him medication on time.
“My blood sugar levels once went low when I was at an airport in Kenya. My manager failed to get an injection for my insulin on time and
I really had difficulties stabilising my sugar levels.
“When I fire managers, people think I’m wrong, but it’ll be because they’d have failed to secure such critical stuff on time as I’ll sometimes be on the brink of death.”
Soul Jah Love said Dai Hupenyu Hwaitengwa, his forthcoming album, was inspired by his battle with diabetes, and is a project meant to make listeners appreciate life, especially good health.
“Dai Hupenyu Hwaitengwa is a very emotional album as I’ll be singing in a way that people can feel my pain through my voice.
I’m one artiste who prefers to sing about real issues unlike singing about flashy cars like Porsche or a double storey house that I don’t have.”
He said he is usually sick but prefers to be strong as he is passionate about his career.
“Even when I’m doing radio interviews like this one, I’ll be sick but I have to be strong because I’m doing it for my career,” said Soul Jah Love.
The artiste’s shows nationally are synonymous with controversy as Soul Jah Love does not pitch up for shows he is booked for, with many people questioning who is to blame for his behaviour.
In some instances, he takes to the stage, chants: “Chibababa . . . conquering” and leaves, angering many fans who are now convinced he will be taking them for a ride.
But two years ago, Chibaba ran out of luck as he was arrested in Mutare for allegedly defrauding show promoter and businessman, Esau Mupfumi of $750 after collecting his performance fee and failing to perform.