Somizi’s ‘shady’ reality rip-off

2011-06-11 16:16

Local celebrity and choreographer Somizi Mhlongo has been caught lying – on reality TV.

The lie was caught on tape on the third episode of Vuzu channel’s Top Shayela show, which sees ­local celebrities flaunt their ­supposedly flamboyant lifestyles, luxurious homes, endless shopping sprees and expensive rides to viewers.

The episode in question was showcasing Mhlongo, who raved about his shoe collection, his dancing career and his sunglasses, claiming that he had “bought 13 pairs of shades from local boutique Sunglass Hut”.

But City Press has since learnt that Mhlongo, who goes by the glamorous name of SomGaga (from pop icon Lady Gaga) never made a purchase of “R50 000” from the boutique.

Instead, he had “walked out of the store and shot the scene (for the show) and returned the sunglasses immediately”.

“He came into the store that day to shoot the scene, making it look like he was buying the shades.

He walked out to pose for the cameras but gave them back after they were finished shooting.

So what he told people on TV and Twitter was not true,” said a source.

Speaking to City Press from Cape Town Mhlongo admitted he had not bought any of the sunglasses but had merely pretended to do so for the shoot.

“Your source was jealous and misunderstood what I was saying on the show. He or she clearly does not understand the concept of ­faking it for TV,” he said.

“Yes, we did walk into the shop, pretended to be choosing sunglasses and pretended to have bought them for the cameras, ­because the show had to be on air before Sunglass Hut was going to give me 13 sunglasses for my show, Dance Your Butt Off,” said ­Mhlongo.

Sunglass Hut brand manager Wedeaad Adams said she was not sure if Mhlongo had bought the sunglasses, but admitted that ­celebrities had used their stock for shoots before.

Meanwhile, Top Shayela has garnered an average of 27 901 viewers in the six weeks it has been on air, says the South African Advertising Research Foundation.

It’s no surprise, seeing as it has been showcasing the “fabulous” lives of TV personality Bonang Matheba, rapper Da Les, socialite Uyanda Mbuli, singer Loyiso Bala and DJ Tira.

TV Plus editor Andre Neveling said there had been a big increase in reality shows on local television because they received a lot of interest from viewers “curious about their favourite celebrities”.

“The reality format has become popular internationally so it’s ­natural that South Africa also joins in,” said Neveling.

“It does place pressure on our celebrities a little bit where some do lie, but that only places them under even more pressure.

If they told audiences the truth they would understand because they are human after all.”

More reality shows are coming up as hip-hop duo Jozi is currently shooting their own show while Masters of Rhythm starts on June 22 on Vuzu.

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