A man who took maskandi music fans by surprise when he claimed to be the late popular artist Khulekani “Mqgumeni” Khumalo is due to appear in the Nquthu Magistrate’s Court, in northern KwaZulu-Natal, today.
Colonel Jay Naicker said the man was arrested after police established through comparing fingerprints that he had falsely identified himself as Khumalo.
Detectives had been sent to Nquthu to investigate the man’s motive for faking his identity.
Thousands of Khumalo’s fans had travelled from around the country to Nquthu after hearing that the singer, who died in 2009, had been resurrected.
Khumalo was a popular maskandi artist who had won several music awards.
The imposter told a crowd on Sunday that he was Khumalo and that he had not died.
He said he had been kidnapped by a traditional healer who had kept him in a forest in Gauteng – and had escaped before the healer could turn him into a zombie.
“The man was arrested and police are working with the National Prosecuting Authority to formulate charges to be laid against him,” said Naicker.
The man was being held at Dundee police station pending his court appearance.
News of the man’s arrest was welcomed by Khumalo’s fans and relatives.
The matter was complicated by a split among Khumalo’s relatives, including his wives, some of whom believed the man was indeed the dead singer.
Khumalo’s girlfriend, Zehlise Xulu, who has a 10-year-old son with him, said she hoped the man would be convicted and sent to jail for a long time for “bringing back old pains”.
“My son travelled all the way from Johannesburg with the hope of seeing his father, only to find that the man was a hooligan. I was annoyed when he repeatedly referred to me as his lover,” she said.