Lerato Sengadi, the widow of Motswako legend Jabulani Tsambo, better known by his stage name Hip Hop Pantsula (HHP), is set to anchor the newest reality series coming to screens.
The PR specialist and marketing professional is a part of ‘Widows Unveiled,’ a10-part Showmax Original that follows the lives of five women who were married to public figures who passed away.
The series was produced by Passionlane Productions, the brains behind Mzansi Magic’s Safta-nominated hit show ‘Uthando Nes'thembu’.
The reality TV show documents the journey of each woman, from pain to triumph, as they navigate the drama and scandal that followed the death of their husbands.
The cast includes; award-winning philanthropist, executive producer of ‘Nkalakatha: The Life of Mandoza’ and stroke survivor Mpho Tshabalala, the widow of musician Mandoza; broadcaster and philanthropist Sikelelwa Ngubane, the widow of actor Menzi Ngubane; businesswoman Fundiswa Molefe, the widow of businessman John Molefe; and businesswoman Lerato Maphatsoe, the widow of former Defence Minister Kebby Maphatsoe.
"I decided to do this because I realised that widowhood is treated like a colossal taboo,” said Sengadi.
“Throughout my journey as a young widow, I realised that black widows, specifically, have it harder. It's a generational curse and pattern.
“Women can’t speak openly about these experiences; they can’t speak about the pain and the journey to rediscovering yourself after loss.
“Society has made it very difficult to be a widow … when you show up for each other you are ridiculed and it’s called ‘trauma bonding’, instead of seeing it as a support system!
“I want to show my reality and let people know that it's not easy, it is nothing to be ashamed of, and you're not alone," said Sengadi.
It took some time for Ngubane to agree to be a part of the reality series, but after pondering on all she had gone through after her husband’s passing, she decided, why not.
“I know that I am not the only woman who is dealing with the trials and tribulations that come with being a widow. My husband was a public figure, so why can't I tell my story publicly?
“I also want to show other people that it is not only your average Joe that goes through this - we are many.”
Tshabalala wants to show viewers how she dealt with rebuilding after her husband’s passing. “Rebuilding is difficult, but through faith and hope, it can be done.”
Maphatsoe has assured viewers that they can expect a lot of discomfort and honesty from each lady’s storyline. “Viewers can expect that we are authentic, we are telling our truth, and nothing is scripted, but everything is from our realities.”
But Sengadi wants to also make it clear that she can’t control how viewers receive the show. “I’m telling my story. It is your responsibility how you receive it.”
‘Widows Unveiled’ premiers on Showmax on February 12 with new episodes every week.
WATCH THE TRAILER