Linda Sibiya Fired from Ukhozi FM
Millions of Ukhozi FM listeners in South Africa and around the world are finding it hard to come to terms with the fact that Linda “Mr Magic” Sibiya is no longer part of the station. According to Isolezwe newspaper, Mr Magic was fired on Thursday. It is rumoured that his association with the African National Congress (ANC) is what cost him his job. He reportedly attended several ANC events. In one event, he is said to have publicly encouraged people to vote ANC, something radio DJs are not allowed to do.
From Monday the 3rd of February his morning show, Vuka Mzansi, will be hosted by Sipho Mbatha a.k.a DJ Sgqemeza. Khathide Tshathugodo Ngobe will host the afternoon drive. The reaction from listeners on Twitter and Facebook showed clearly that they were unhappy with these changes. Some of them heavily criticized the station Manager Bonga Mpanza for poor management skills. Others threatened to boycott UKhozi FM and listen to Gagasi 99.5FM and other competing radio stations.
Sibiya’s dismissal came as a shock to many listeners. On Twitter, Nkululeko Dlala said: “I’m still shocked about Linda Sibiya. UKhozi FM will never be the same, we will miss you Legend u (will) always be the best to me.” Another user, Kgolo_Daguru, said: “I can’t imagine Ukhozi fm without Mr Magic Linda Sibiya.”
Mr Magic’s story about his journey to success served as a source of inspiration to many young people. There is a point in his life when he was so broke that he hung around the streets of Johannesburg without a place to sleep. He would sleep at Park Station, a railway station in Joburg. During the day he sold bed linen. His life circumstances made him consider committing suicide. In 1995 Radio Maritzburg (KZN) gave him an opportunity to host a 12 – 1pm show. During that time he also sold medical aid. In 1996, his dream of joining Ukhozi FM came true. From there he rose to prominence and became one of the most popular DJs in the station’s history.
From November last year, Mr Magic started hosting a talk show called “S’funukwazi” on DStv’s Mzansi Magic. Whether his dismissal has to do with his new show, his political interests or personal conflicts with the management is yet to be confirmed. On his Twitter account, he said he would talk to the media at a press conference soon.
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