The second annual Afropunk Johannesburg 2018 festival released its line-up and opened ticket sales on Tuesday afternoon.
While many were excited to see some of their favourite artists booked to perform at the event, the LGBTQ community was not pleased with the inclusion of alleged transphobe, YoungstaCPT.
Some members of the community said the Cape Town hip-hop rapper should be removed from the line-up because he reportedly made a transphobic statement and mocked a trans woman at an event in Cape Town, in 2016.
The trans woman who alleges she was verbally attacked by the artist is media personality and celebrity make-up artist, Muzi Zuma. Speaking to Mambaonline, Zuma said she was with her friend at an afterparty event when the friend bought it to her attention that YoungstaCPT was taking a video of her while laughing.
“I wasn’t aware of it, but my friend was very cognitive about the people around me, and he saw Youngsta taking a video of me. He then posted the video on social media asking. ‘What is this nonsense’,” Zuma claimed.
The clip has since been taken down on social media, but Muzi still recalls how the Cape Town artist was “laughing hysterically” at her in the video. Zuma said she never received any apology from Youngsta, but hopes that this could be a lesson for Afropunk. “They need to take this as a lesson and investigate the people they book. Afropunk is a safe space not only for LGBT people but also for every ‘alternative’ black kid,” she said.
Zuma hopes that the festival will consider removing the alleged transphobic artist, and start looking into inviting acts who will allow others to feel safe in these spaces. “This is a greater conversation than my attack. Anybody who is a celebrity should be more conscious and aware of what they say or do. There is a vast spectrum of people who are supporting them,” she said.
The festival has always set out inclusive rules and regulations that should be abided by by all attendees at its events, including not being homophobic or transphobic.
Mambaonline reached out to both Afropunk and YoungstaCPT for comment but had not received any comment by the time of publication.
Afropunk Joburg is set to take place on 30 and 31 December 2018.