Muvhango’s Vusi Feared Revealing His Origins Due To Xenophobia In South Africa
Petrified of xenophobia attacks in South Africa, Vusi Mukwevho, as he is well known on Muvhango, has revealed that he was afraid to speak about his heritage.
Real name, Raphael Griffiths he was born in South Africa on January 3, 1992, besides acting, he also does presenting and music.
Raphael says he was afraid to talk about his heritage since he is half Zambian. Revealing his ancestry Vusi said:
Yes, I am half Zambian. My dad is Zambian. He is from Kitwe. Some of my family is still there in Zambia. Some have married guys from Botswana, some are married to Namibians, and some are married to Zimbabweans, others to Malawians.
My great-grandma from my father side was originally Portuguese. She had a bit of Angolan descent. They moved to Zambia, and that’s how my grandma came about. She married a Zambian man, and that’s how my Dad came about. My Dad married a Zulu woman and that’s how I came about. I am an African. It’s a nice mix.
Because he did not feel comfortable with how some xenophobic South Africans treated foreigners, the actor said he was scared to tell people that he is half-Zambian.
In an interview with Kiki Nembhard, Raphael said that he was unsure that he would still be welcomed and loved if he revealed that his father is Zambian.
…when I was growing up, I was scared to tell people that I’m half Zambian. I’d ask myself; ‘If I told these people I’m half Zambian, would you love me the same way you love me now? Or would you think this Kwerekwere is here taking our jobs? Or would you put a burning tyre on my neck too?’ I don’t know. That’s why I couldn’t say anything. Even though I was born here and my whole life is here, I still felt uncomfortable.
…we have the spirit of brotherhood, but then half of me comes from the most xenophobic country in Africa. Maybe if we say what we as Africans have in common excluding South Africa – we have brotherhood.
…I am serious. People used to criticise my mum for having a child with a foreign man. There was too much talking and unnecessary criticism. We are very xenophobic here.
According to Raphael, South Africa is one of the most xenophobic countries on the continent and it is in the same category as Egypt, Morocco and Algeria.
I think what a lot of South Africans need to do is travel to other countries. SA people don’t travel to other provinces let alone other countries. Travelling opens your mind. When you see how people receive you in their countries, then you’ll be able to receive other people in your country. South Africa has ‘separated’ itself, it’s like we are the New York of Africa. I’d say out of over 50 countries in Africa, only 4 of them are Xenophobic…South Africa, Egypt, Morocco and Algeria.
Raphael came into the spotlight in 2009 as a presenter on SABC 2’s youth programme Q-base 28‚ and straight after, he bagged a role on Muvhango.
On Muvhango, Raphael’s character Vusi transitioned from a spoilt, troublesome 16-year old teenager who relied on his mother Thandaza (played by actress Sindi Dlathu) into a father.
Raphael left the show after 5 years and joined e.tv’s Imbewu: The Seed where he played the role of Zithulele Bhengu.
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