Comedian Ashifashabba promises a TV comeback
Shonisani ‘Ashifashabba’ Muleya. (Photo: Supplied)
It’s been about 14
years since Shonisani ‘Ashifashabba’ Muleya had South Africans in stitches with
his comedy show Ashifashabba on SABC 2.
The comedian and radio
personality is now enjoying life as a radio broadcaster which is the reason
behind his scarcity from our television screens.
Ashifashabba, who is
well known for his comedy skirts on his self-titled show says he decided to go
back to radio.
Read more: Ashifashabba is more than just a
“I moved back to
Limpopo in 2006, Polokwane to be precise when the first commercial radio
station was licensed in the province. After my stint at Capricorn FM ended, and
then started two (02) very successful urban radio stations, Energy FM and
Choice FM in Polokwane and Thohoyandou respectively,” he says.
THE CHALLENGES HE
He admits it has not
been a walk in the park to get those stations off the ground. He says it is
through the assistance of some close friends that he managed to pull it off.
“Funding is always an
issue for start-ups. Energy FM took off the ground using personal investments
from myself and my business partner Simphiwe Mdlalose who is a Chairman of the
radio station. A year into the operations the Small Enterprise Financial Agency
approved funding which we used to upgrade our studio equipment and as they say
the rest is history.
“Then in 2016, ICASA
which is the broadcasting regulator approved another licence for Choice FM
which is based in Thohoyandou inside Thavhani Mall. The same funding challenges
with the first station were experienced in terms of lack of funding, but my other
business partner Mr Stanley Luvhengo who is the Chairman of the radio station
assisted and the radio station is now flourishing,” he explains.
He says it gives him
great pleasure that he has managed to help equip the youth of that province
with training and job opportunities through these stations.
A TV COMEBACK
Even though radio is
keeping Ashifashabba quite busy, he promises that he will not totally abandon
“Will I come back to
TV? The answer is a big YES,” he vows.
He is mindful of the
fact that TV has evolved and there’s something he’s trying to make. He only
hints that it will be a comedy show and doesn’t divulge how it will be
“Well, the television
landscape as it was then for sketch comedy and now has changed, so I have a
fresh and powerful idea for the new Ashifashabba Television Comedy show,” he
TELLING YOUR OWN
artists ought to start owning their work by starting their own production
houses and not look to big companies to tell their stories. He says he owned
his TV show and signed contracts directly with the SABC.
“I believe that more
artists need to rise up and own production houses, that to make sure that their
original stories they want to tell are not distorted by owners of big
production houses who have big budgets and thus dictate terms, sometimes
leading to distortion of original story ideas,” he says.
As busy as he might be
with radio, the father-of-three says he makes time for his children and family.
“Wow, I really enjoy
sharing my space with my three children, Mukundi (20), Tshimangadzo (9) and my
youngest Unarine (3). Family comes first and I ensure that I spend as much time
as possible with all my kids despite not staying with them fulltime,” he
After separating with
his wife Vhonani Neluvhalani in 2015, Ashifashabba has been cagey about sharing
details of his personal life and won’t address how co-parenting is going.
“I am a very private
person, so I prefer to keep that part private. You know what neh? But on a
lighter note, Can people just do their thing for themselves and enjoy life nje
please? I beg you to understand my fellow African people [sic],” he says.