Chomee, Owami hit back at funding accusations

Johannesburg – Pop singer Chomee and Owami Mafokate have broken their silence on allegations that they benefited from the R300-million presidential stimulus package because of their links to kwaito king Arthur Mafokate.

Owami is Arthur’s daughter and Chomee, a former 999 artist, is Mafokate’s ex-girlfriend.

The two women hogged media headlines after allegations that they unfairly benefited from the scheme because of their purported proximity to the Kaffir hitmaker.

Chomee was even accused of using the money to buy a new car.

The artists released separate statements yesterday rubbishing the accusations as misinformation peddled by patriarchal and chauvinistic males who believe that women cannot achieve anything without the assistance of men.

Owami Mafokate. INSTAGRAM

Owami, who is a club DJ, confirmed that her company, Queendom Media, applied for funding from the National Arts Council but said although her application was successful, she has not yet received the funds.

She said she was disappointed at suggestions that she was supposed to be prejudiced simply because she is Mafokate’s daughter.

Also read: Pantsula takes kwaito king to task over non-payment

“Firstly, I am known because of my parents’ talent, secondly, I am myself a performer since I was three years old. I had gigs before the pandemic hit and got affected like any other artist, ” she said. “It is disappointing that a young female artist like me is subjected to these attacks for no apparent reason. I trust that female artists born out of famous parents will not be denied an opportunity to enter the business space just because of their parents’ surnames.”

MIDRAND, SOUTH AFRICA – MARCH 14: King of Kwaito Arthur Mafukate outside the Midrand Magistrate’s Court after appearing on charges of assault on March 14, 2018 in Midrand, South Africa.
(Photo by Gallo Images / Sowetan / Simphiwe Nkwali)

Chomee launched a blistering attack on her critics and those suggesting that she got the funds because she was Mafokate’s ex-lover.

“It is indeed a sad day in South Africa and to be specific, in the struggle to ensure gender parity, emancipate and uplift women in this country, when a woman is openly vilified by men.

what is it that I did wrong or different as an applicant to an open call for funding?

“The question I am asking myself is what is it that I did wrong or different as an applicant to an open call for funding? Is it because I am not deserving of funding or is it because I am a black woman? I hear that other white women who applied for more money than I did get approved and even received part payment, and no one is asking them anything,” said Chomee.

She confirmed her company Divatainment had applied for funding and was approved.

“I was affected by the lockdown like all other practitioners. I lost a lot of work.”

“Why then am I under this scrutiny. Is it because a black woman is not deserving of a R2-million funding? Is it because a black woman cannot manage money or projects meant to empower other black women?”

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