Anyone who had their eyes glued on what has been known as the ‘KFC proposal’ or ‘KFC’couple', among other titles, has noticed the decline in activity regarding the online wedding arrangements and public pledges.
Independent makeup artists, hairstylist, photographers and videographers, chefs, wedding planners and even a lawyer had publicly declared to offer pro bono services to the couple whose names we now know are Nonhlanhla Soldaat and Hector Mkansi.
What could have been an unprecedented national wedding planning initiative, a first-of-its-kind 21st century social media event planning, a wedding that would have come together on social media with strangers rallying together for a couple who inadvertently shared their intimate moment with South Africa, has produced sour grapes.
A month after that historic social media event, there is discontent from some of the initial key players who rallied stakeholders in attempts to make the “national wedding” happen.
In November, when the video of Nonhlanhla and Hector snowballed to viral status was a moment of coming together for many South Africans - a rare moment of selflessness and generosity. The moment that was seen by many as communal effort to gift their fellow South African couple with a wedding is now being lamented, with some sentiments being that the efforts have been 'hijacked'.
A Twitter user, who goes by name Alpha Sipho on the platform, credits three people who asked their followers to help coordinate this wedding. In a thread, Sipho claims that he and the other parties involved have been blindsided by the wedding plans.
After he relays how he corresponded with the couple, Sipho says; “A week later we followed up with the couple and they asked that all questions and queries be sent to the chicken crew because they were managing everything at this point,” adding that contracts were given to the couple “to make sure everyone is protected”.
Sipho could not be reached for further comment at the time of publication.
Jiki jiki the couple is now doing photo shoots, media interviews, Instagram accounts even attending the derby and taking selfies with the chicken gang. The whole 9 yards.— I AM YOUR MC! (@alphi_s) December 4, 2019
Hau, since nini manje? What about space? What about privacy? What about all offfff??? pic.twitter.com/tOD3O0ZDFM
Responding to questions, KFC said; “The documents signed by KFC, the project manager and the couple ensure that the couple is clear and protected throughout the process leading up to the wedding and their honeymoon.”
Many weighed in on the incident and feelings of being sidelined in organising the ‘national wedding’ spread. These are some of the sentiments shared online:
Except the people whose idea it was to put this wedding together. Had it not been for them, so many people wouldn’t have pledged. What were you intending on giving the couple after you found them? It was defs not a wedding. https://t.co/HpLuYwFtHj— Ngoako Lerato Mannya (@LeratoMannya) December 5, 2019
Akere da ppl who initiated the whole thing were given a red card by the chicken people, now da chicken pple are shining 4 something they ddnt thought of in the 1st place , apparently our couple has signed a contract with da chicken ppl nd the wedding is on the 31st of December ??— Nalah_TheLioness?????????????? (@tumeloledwaba19) December 5, 2019
When asked about the claims made against them on social media, KFC says: “This is Bhut’ Hector and Sis Nonhlanhla’s special day which is not about any single brand or individual. KFC is committed to collaboration if it is in the best interest of the couple. An independent team has been appointed to manage everything that has to do with the pledges as well as gifts and individual offers. This team will ensure that all participating parties are fairly represented and that the pledges come to fruition.”
KFC also stated that “one of KFC’s pledges to the couple is an independent project manager who is experienced in putting together events and sponsorships [on a large scale]. The project manager along with the coordinator and wedding planner have put together a comprehensive list and project plan to connect and finalise all the pledges.”
KFC has appointed Precious Tumisho Thamaga from Precious Celebration as the official wedding planner, and announced that the wedding date Nonhlanhla and Hector chose is 31 December 2019.
When W24 previously approached Precious for comment, she said “I just need to check and confirm with all concerned first,” but did not respond with comment beyond that time.
There have been others who have voiced their opinion in favour of the franchise:
Egos aside, people should not personify this at all its the couple's wedding and the couples alone futhi whoever coordinates is of little importance— Mthokozisi Mwelase (@Mtho_Mwelase) December 5, 2019
The most important thing is for that couple to have a wedding ceremony that was promised 2 them by willing contributors, I hope all those celebs & brands that offered free sponsorship keep their promises, irrespective of who the 'organizers' are & the couple is happy #KFCProposal— Sugar & Spice?? (@original_miss_p) December 5, 2019
What is your take on how the planning of the 'national wedding' has been treated? Let us know here.
Sign up to W24’s newsletters so you don't miss out on any of our stories and giveaways.