‘I have a lot in common with Scandal! character’

A role on popular Telenovela Scandal! that was meant for a few months turned into a mainstay role for Mapaseka Koetle-Nyokong.

Koetle-Nyokong plays the polarising character Dintle Nyathi. She has been with the show since 2013.

In an interview with Sunday World, Koetle-Nyokong said it’s amazing how her character has grown over the years.

“Dintle, for me, has grown tremendously as a person and I believe that she has learnt from her past mistakes. For me as an actress, I have grown with her, although she is younger than me but believe it or not we are similar in the things we have gone through.”

The Bloemfontein-born actress said playing one character for so long has taught her how to perfect her craft.

“I love how they have written the storylines for her; the story has helped me as an actress to grow and it was so amazing to go through certain things at the same time as she was going through them.” One similarity she points to between her and her character is the drive to achieve their goals and get what they want.

Koetle-Nyokong is married to Nelson Nyokong and they have a child.

“Being raised by a single mother had its challenges. I had a good upbringing but because we did not have a television at home I had to watch from our neighbours. Growing up in Bloemfontein was OK but there were no opportunities for what I wanted, but the fire in me kept me going.”

Currently on the soapie Dintle has just been reunited with her daughter (Mo) who she had at a young age and gave up for adoption. She is also grappling with the murder of her on-screen lover Quinton, who she seeks justice for.

“I think with everything happening with the child, Dintle is distracted. Before she was on the frontline of seeking justice for the love of her life. The truth is slowly unfolding and trust me, the Kubeka’s will pay.”

The Kubeka family is led by veteran actor Fana Mokoena (Vukile Kubeka) and actress Silindile Nodangala, who plays his wife Nomvula Kubeka.

Koetle-Nyokong is inspired by several people. Business-wise she is inspired by DJ Zinhle, while in acting she is inspired by Nthati Mosheshe.

She also talked about the many challenges faced by women in film and television productions.

“With some productions, should you get pregnant the possibility of you not working is high because they would have to change the storyline, so you have to plan your life around your career.”

The actress launched Gorge Grab n Go Cafe as her debut in the entrepreneurial space, and she has spread her wings into her first love, fashion.

“The clothing business is doing very well but unfortunately due to Covid-19, one of the two Gorge Grab n Go Cafes had to be closed. It was very tough but we managed to keep the other one working in Barloworld.”

Koetle-Nyokong wants to spread her wings to movies and Netflix.

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