Senior Arts Reporter
Three children believed to have been sired by yesteryear musician Amon Mvula have emerged ahead of his memorial celebrations scheduled for Wednesday.
Mvula succumbed to pneumonia on June 24, 2008 and at that time he neither had children with wife Althea nor any known children.
His brother Gibson Mvula revealed to The Herald Arts yesterday that Amon left three boys whom he sired out of wedlock.
“Some family members couldn’t believe that my brother had no children at all and it was topical in the past years.
“There was a lot of talking from my family. I ignored it at first, but chose to do thorough research because we knew about our brother before. I then went on National FM on a programme hosted by Robson Umali, on a programme called “Gamba Remumhanzi”, where I called out for any children sired by my late brother.
“Surprisingly, three came forth and the two, Tapiwa and Kudzaishe, are in their early 20s while the third is in South Africa aged 15. The third refused to give us further details as he was dodgy.
All the three children are from different women.
Gibson said the reason he decided to search for his brother’s children was to deal with inheritance.
“A lot has been happening in our family and the talks were too much. We didn’t want someone to come and claim Amon’s little wealth, but the best was to look for his children. His widow, based in Pretoria, South Africa, was shocked to hear about the children’s issues too.
“We are in good books with her and each time we go to South Africa we stay at her place,” he said.
Gibson said Althea took all the royalties from Zimbabwe Music Rights Association (ZIMURA) but still insisted that Amon died in debt.
“Althea was the one who benefited from the royalties. We don’t know how much she pocketed, but we agreed as family that it was fine though some were not happy about her taking everything. The only challenge with her is that she always reminds us that Amon died in debt and to date some have not been cleared as it has created a lot of interest.
We still wonder how and why. This is what she always tells us when we visit her or sometimes she calls,” he explained.
Asked how they would conduct the memorial celebrations amid the Government ban on gatherings, Gibson said the event would be held virtually on social media platforms.
“We respect the call by the Government and we are not even having people gathering. The celebrations will be conducted virtually at home in Kadoma. We will be playing Amon’s songs and videos. We will also be open to the public to share Amon’s story, what the people did not know about my brother, not the negative but some facts that will surprise many people,” he said.
Gibson said they want to continue protecting his brother’s legacy henceforth has also created a group “Vandudzo Brothers”.
“So far we can’t do anything with Amon’s music as his widow has the rights but we are negotiating with her so that at least we can do our own renditions and videos among others.
Remember my brother died with unfinished projects and we want to continue from where he left. We have a new group called “Vandudzo Brothers” and I have roped in Romeo Chiyangwa, Cloud Besent and Guyson,” he explained.
Gibson is the fourth born in a family of eight added that after the commemorations they want to start working on rebranding Mvula music.
“Amon’s last project was the album, “50/50” and it did not do well. We are not all in the music but I am doing all I can to help protect the brand, if the deal on rights is solved amicably, you will also be hearing more from us. For now, with my group we are just pursuing our musical career and we are sticking to the rhumba genre though fused with different genres,” said Gibson.