- DJ Fresh, whose real name is Thato Sikwane, has spoken out against gender-based violence following rape allegations.
- Poet and activist Ntsiki Mazwai has accused the popular DJ of being a rapist.
- Sikwane says he feels very strongly to stand against GBV in every form.
Perpetrators of gender-based violence have no place in South Africa, and men should take a stand, DJ Fresh has said.
DJ Fresh, real name Thato Sikwane, released a statement on Thursday after the Gauteng High Court in Johannesburg ruled in his favour, ordering poet and activist Ntsiki Mazwai to refrain from making defamatory statements about him.
According to Eyewitness News, Mazwai told thousands of her followers Fresh was a rapist while referencing another post on Facebook in which other alleged perpetrators of sexual violence were mentioned.
In his statement, Fresh said he felt "moved to take a stand" after Mazwai's "damaging" post "as it is directly subverting my work [on] behalf of a cause so close to my heart".
He said his legal team had contacted Mazwai and asked her to remove her "unsubstantiated posts", however she declined to do so.
Fresh said the matter was then escalated as the information was not only false but personally harmful to him and his family.
"I rarely respond to false accusations because often in doing so, it provides the perpetrator with a sense of legitimacy."
Fresh said as someone who has been in the entertainment industry for more than two decades, he "strived to serve as a voice for, and ally of, the unheard and disaffected".
"I know also that as a man I can never presume to fully understand the physical and psychological impact of gender based violence on women.
"However, as a son, husband and father, I feel strongly motivated to stand against GBV in every form."
He said it was time for men to stop being bystanders and acknowledge that in their own silence they were also culpable.
"We must take action against perpetrators of GBV [gender-based violence] and reject them and their actions – they have no place in the South African society we are working so hard to build. I recognise the desperate need for us all to shine a light on this critical issue," the 94.7 FM DJ said.