News Brief

South Africans are Angry at DJ Cleo for Showing Support to Convicted Rapist Brickz

DJ Cleo posted a picture of himself and Brickz on social media and South Africans are not here for it.

South African musician DJ Cleo, real name Cleopas Monyepao, has come under heavy fire after he posted a picture of himself embracing disgraced musician Brickz, real name Sipho Charles Ndlovu. Brickz is currently serving a 15-year prison sentence for raping his 16-year-old niece - a rape he still denies.


A soccer match organised by a non-profit organisation to aid in the rehabilitation of inmates, reconnected DJ Cleo and Brickz. In a recent tweet, DJ Cleo then posted a picture of himself and Brickz (clad in his prison uniform) with the caption: "We all run our own races, he fell along the way...but the race is not over."


Now, while South Africans are somewhat divided, the majority of them are angered by the post.

READ: The Daily Nightmare of Being a South African Woman Shows No Signs of Ending

Those in support of DJ Cleo have claimed that he is simply showing support for his friend. They have gone on to say that people make mistakes and they deserve second chances. The said 'mistake' being the rape of a minor of course, a minor who now becomes a part of some of the highest rape statistics in the world.




The majority who have come out and condemned DJ Cleo have highlighted the nonchalance that South African men in particular exhibit when it comes to rape. They have also lamented how normalized rape has become such that men can easily and freely liken it to a mere ''fall'' or accident.

Whilst Brickz may be serving his time in prison, he has been more willing to talk about how "musically untouchable" he is than showing remorse for raping his own niece.





DJ Cleo once again took to social media following the backlash and apologized saying that his tweet has been "so misunderstood" and that he was not sympathizing with a rapist. However, he went on to slam actress Nomzamo Mbatha for having taken a picture with kwaito artist Arthur Mafokate (a known woman abuser) and asked rapper Boity Thulo (who publicly condemned DJ Cleo) why she didn't show the same outrage with Mbatha.

So basically, DJ Cleo is really not apologizing but instead asking South Africans: Why can't I take a picture with a problematic (insert "convicted" in this case) individual just like everybody else?

Photo: Rebecca Tembo

How Rebecca Tembo Overcame her Personal Struggles to Help Other Fashion Entrepreneurs

The 25-year-old designer's clothing has been worn by the likes of Cardi B and Maren Morris but she's had to push through some tough times to make it big.

She may be running a successful fashion brand now, but Rebecca Tembo knows what it’s like to be unsure of one’s creative path. The self-taught designer, who was born in London to Nigerian and Zambian parents, has gone viral on social media a number of times, thanks to her custom-made jumpsuits. But she’s also had her fair share of challenges – and battled mental health issues – along the way.

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Photo Credit: Sope Adelaja

Travel Diary: The Warmth & Beauty of Senegal is Unparalleled

In OkayAfrica's latest Travel Diary, Nigerian photographer and storyteller Sope Adelaja heads to Senegal to learn what it's like to embrace the "Teraanga" lifestyle.

After about 10 hours of flying and stopovers I landed in the city of Dakar, Senegal at about 11pm. I approached immigration to have my passport stamped and then proceeded to get my luggage. I immediately noticed that almost everyone spoke French and very few people understood English. I understand little French, so I knew then that it was going to be a struggle. With the help of Google Translate, I was able to then negotiate and hire a cab to drop me off at my residence for the night.

Photo Credit: Sope Adelaja

The language barrier was not as much of as an obstacle as I thought it would be. This largely had to do with the generosity and warmness shown by the community during my visit.

Senegal is known as the “ Land of Teraanga." Teraanga, which is a Wolof word, is often defined as meaning “ hospitality." But that is a very loose way of translating it. It's so much more complex than that. It is a process of discovery and expression. It is a way of Life. Teraanga is aimed at showcasing a narrative of hospitality and beauty that exists across different cultures.

Photo Credit: Sope Adelaja

Unity over adversity is a running theme of Saint-Louis, a town located on an island at the mouth of the Senegal river. It is an outstanding example of a colonial city by its natural setting and colonial architecture which gives it a distinctive appearance and identity. (These features are why the island is on UNESCO's World Heritage Site list.)

Photo Credit: Sope Adelaja

Saint-Louis is a city that will charm you. Beyond tourism, this community has come to embody its resourceful spirits. A big part of the way of life is fishing. It is the main occupation of people living in Saint-Louis, also known to the locals as Ndar.

Photo Credit: Sope Adelaja

When shooting in Africa, it’s easy to lean on visual crutches — like ornate jewelry or bright, striking clothing. But that’s only skimming the visual surface of the community of people. Digging deeper requires an extended stay, as well as collaborating with locals who have grown up in the area.

Photo Credit: Sope Adelaja

In the course of digging deeper, i discovered Ndar had a lot more to offer beyond beautiful aesthetics, very rich culture, and history it holds strong remains of past colonial times.

Next up was Gorée Island and the destination is an exceptional testimony to one of the greatest tragedies in the history of humanity: slave trade. Even with its complicated history, Over the years, Gorée Island has become a well known destination, with figures like Nelson Mandela and even Unisted States President Barack Obama and his family visiting the island.

Photo Credit: Sope Adelaja

Storytelling is so powerful. And as a photographer, it's my intent to show the warmth, beauty, and hospitality of Africa across different regions. I strongly believe we as people of Africa have a responsibility to further shape the narrative of Africa’s unique culture and people.

See more photos from Senegal below.

Photo Credit: Sope Adelaja


Photo Credit: Sope Adelaja

Photo Credit: Sope Adelaja

Photo Credit: Sope Adelaja

Photo via Mavin Records

The 9 Songs You Need to Hear This Week

Featuring Mavin Records, Asake, Stormzy x Amaarae x Black Sherif, Fally Ipupa, Pheelz x French Montana, and more.

Every Friday, we highlight the top releases through our best music of the week column, Songs You Need to Hear. Here's our round-up of the best tracks and music videos that came across our desks.

If you like these music lists, you can also check out our Best Songs of the Month columns following Nigerian, Ghanaian, East African and South African music.

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