Celebration at the crown gospel awards
12 July 2017
The Carnival City in Johannesburg recently hosted the Crown Gospel Blestival to commemorate 10 years of the Crown Gospel Awards. A variety of gospel acts praised and worshipped in a showcase that debuted the gospel theatrical play, Maria.
One of the headlining acts was Sgwili Zuma, a gospel artist with albinism. THISABILITY met up with him for a recap of the event and his rise in the genre of gospel music.
TN: Congratulations on your performance and your participation in this event. Tell us about tonight and the role of your music?
SZ: “Tonight is about being myself, representing KZN artists, albinism – the killings, abuse of women and children. We are busy with programs in relation to awareness pushing the education towards discrimination on ALBINISM. I am working very closely with the Albinism Association of South Africa and Mama Nomasonto Mazibuko trying to address the problems that they have and problem that I have as Sgwili Zuma.
Working very hard to go into the real area where the information on albinism is not accessible. We have a problem. – persons with albinism have talents. Others are educated and others fear to get out of the house and go to school and that’s where I come in. If you do not get an education yet you want to be a doctor then an opportunity presents itself and there is no qualification – that is a problem.
My role is to develop the individual with albinism to empower them. To grow their self-esteem because with the conditions they are subjected to. They do not look after their skins hence skin cancer and death. Some do not know how to stand up for themselves and some of the women give themselves to men because they cannot sustain themselves. They are a million problems that we are currently facing but if I can start focusing on a few, I know we can progress.
I stand here today representing albinism and letting you know that you can be anything you want to be. People will judge you and assume you are incapable of your own dreams and goals, but I am here showing you that anyone is capable. People who are classified under disability or face any challenges physically need to let go of the anger. Once one lets go of the anger, one has room to stand up and present themselves as individuals with possibilities.”
Echoing on the representation and diversity of gospel artists, the renowned Dr Rebecca Malope commented, “We love Sgwili- we share the stage together. He is our brother. I’ve hosted him on my show, Gospel Time and he is doing a fabulous job. I urge others who believe they have talent to my show. I believe in representation and the door is open.”
The celebrations commenced all the way close to midnight with the likes of Benjamin Dube, Andile KaMajola, Rebecca Malope, Solly Mahlangu, Dumi Mkokstad and many more gracing the stage.
Story by Regina-Mary Ndlovu.