Kaya FM spokesperson, Ian Bredenkamp has responded to Channel24’s request for comment with the following statement:
“Kaya 959 has noted with concern the unfortunate statement made by Ms Unathi Nkayi in a video posted on social media on 26 November 2021, where she claims to have been silenced by the station.
“Kaya 959 recognises and respects the right to freedom of speech as provisioned for by the South African Constitution and, for that reason, will not in any way attempt to restrict it for anyone.
“Ms Nkayi is well aware of the contents of the final communication addressed to her by Kaya 959, especially where confidentiality and perpetuating a false narrative is concerned. Ms Nkayi is also very aware of the reasons and circumstances that led to the termination of her contract with Kaya 959, the evidence of which has been shared with her for her records.
“As per our last media release, Kaya 959 would prefer not to be drawn into a debate around the details of what transpired in the interest of both parties. However, Ms Nkayi is free to share the details of the issue that arose between her and Kaya 959 should she feel the urge to, provided what she shares reflects the true version of events.”
Unathi Nkayi has broken her silence after being mysteriously dismissed as the host of Midday Joy on Kaya 959.
In a statement shared on 17 November, the radio station wrote: “Ms. Nkayi’s contract has ended prematurely due to certain conduct that rendered the relationship intolerable going forward.”
Later, reports swirled about the reason for Unathi’s sudden departure from Kaya, with City Press writing about a heated altercation between Unathi and colleague Sizwe Dhlomo.
The publication claimed that an inside source at Kaya had revealed that Unathi laid a formal complaint against Sizwe with the station’s HR department accusing him of verbal abuse.
In tweets shared on Sunday, 21 November, Sizwe wrote: “Regarding the article in the City Press this morning, I’d just like to state that in the context of GBV in our country & even on the backdrop of Kaya’s history as an organisation, a false abuse claim is not only malicious to those it’s levelled against but it also delegitimises the claims of thousands of victims whose cases fall apart because of lack of evidence. Such an egregious lie is a highly irresponsible thing to do!”
On Friday, after more than a week of remaining quiet, Unathi shared a statement via social media.
“I’ve been silenced by Kaya. I’ve received a letter stating that I may not speak of the matter publicly because of the contractual agreements we all have as freelancers. I was specifically told that I cannot use my platform to share my version of events,” the Idols SA judge said.
“The only matter I will address, because it is very important to me, is the theme of GBV that keeps on coming up,” she added, explaining: “This all started when Sizwe made reference to GBV in South Africa in one of his many posts about me, but GBV had nothing to do with the matter. I never alleged, at any time, that Sizwe committed any act of Gender-Based Violence against me. Sizwe knows this. Kaya knows this.
“But when Sizwe’s comments led to people thinking that I made false allegations against Sizwe regarding GBV, and neither Sizwe nor Kaya do anything about the narrative, or to correct the narrative, I’m obviously compelled to speak up.”
In her statement, Unathi said that both she and Sizwe had submitted written allegations against one another, “some founded, and some found not to be, from both of us”.
The TV personality added that she had handed the matter to her attorney, ending the clip by saying that she had cut ties with Sizwe.
“Sizwe and I are not friends. I decided to distance myself from him the day he decided it was okay to say on air that my marriage failed because of the way I allow my children to prepare umphokoqo wabo,” she said.
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