Lucky stars smile as Somizi gets much-needed Moja Love lifeline

Johannesburg – Media personality Somizi Mhlongo, who has been pulled off television and radio shows after being accused of domestic violence by his estranged husband Mohale Motaung, has been given a lifeline by entertainment channel Moja Love.

Mhlongo has been hired by the most-watched channel on DStv to present its new reality series called Lovey Dovey.

Mhlongo was yanked off Metro FM where he co-presented Ask a Man, a segment of the daily mid-morning show presented by Dineo Ranaka and kicked out of Idols SA, after Mohale alleged that he had broken his ribs and threatened to butcher him with a kitchen knife in domestic violence incident in their marital residence in Joburg about three years ago.

Despite these claims, which angered anti-gender-based violence activists, Mohale did not open any criminal case against the Sarafina star, making it impossible for the allegations to be tested in court.

Sunday World learnt it was because of Mohale’s failure to press criminal charges against Mhlongo that the channel took a decision to hire him.

The much-awaited show, which will see singles from all walks of life falling in love and getting married on set, will be aired on the channel in February for eight weeks.

The channel’s CEO Aubrey Tau confirmed that Mhlongo will be hosting the show, which resembles Big Brother, and winners will walk away with a cash prize of R500 000.

Tau also said the contestants would converge on the Vaal River’s private Summerfell River Lake Residence, which will cost the channel R50 000 a night.

“The main house is spacious and with a volume entrance, four open plan receptions, lounge, dining, family and media rooms.”

Tau further said the contestants would spend three weeks together on the property with the hope of finding love and tying the knot.

But to remain on the lake, he said, the contestants must win the hearts of their fellow competitors, who ultimately decide their fate.

He added that the contestants were in quarantine in line with Covid-19 regulations and other tests were also conducted before filming began.

He said the series had a record number of applications since the advert started running last year.

Mhlongo said he was grateful for bouncing back to the small screen.

“The past few months of my personal life took a toll on my professional life. As a media personality, it can be hard for people to separate the two, but I am happy that a channel like Moja Love was able to separate the two and gave me this opportunity despite the challenges I face.”

Tau said the channel had been inundated with phone calls from viewers to hire Mhlongo.

“Moja Love does not condone nor support domestic violence or abuse, but like any other business, it did not think it would be fair to deny Mhlongo a second chance to join the channel as demanded by its viewers.”

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