Idols SA judge Unathi Nkayi has apologised shortly after she made comments about Xhosa people being “tired of holding up the nation.”
She said she was wrong and shouldn’t have made the joke.
Unathi had to face angry Twitter followers on Sunday night after the comments were made during the Idols SA live show.
This came after she congratulated one of the finalists, Luyolo Yiba, who gave a stellar performance on the show. Unathi said: “On behalf of the Xhosa people, we are tired of holding up the nation.”
The judge then went on to name a few South African Xhosa people who had achieved greatness such as Springbok captain Siya Kolisi, Miss SA Zozibini Tunzi, herself for becoming an author and then eventually Luyolo.
“We are happy to have someone from the Eastern Cape in the finale,” she said.
— #humanDignity (@angie43639902) November 10, 2019
Her comments following Luyolo’s performance went viral and tweeps accused her of tribalism and dividing the country.
Many threatened to boycott the show if she did not apologise.
It didn’t take much time until her name shot up the Twitter trends list. Unathi took to the social-media platform to explain that she was simply trying to carry on a joke that had been “passed around” lately.
“It saddens me that I have broken so many hearts with what I said tonight. What I saw was a beautiful joke being passed around this past week by so many South Africans not necessarily Xhosa and wanted to share.”
She then went on to say that she was wrong to do so and apologised to those who were offended.
Many took to social media to express their disapproval and called out Unathi for being biased.
Hayi sani naye Unathi is dividing icountry now worse we were doing well kanjani 😏 pic.twitter.com/hXQZVcNZgu
— Okuhle (@just_Okuhle) November 10, 2019
If you all say Unathi was joking then it was a stupid joke. Nonke niyazi Unathi fav is Sneziey. Unathi uyenze ngabom lanto to sabotage Luyolo. Uyenze ngabom marn tshiiiiiii. We will continue voting for talent not umxhosa.
— I am Faithful (@Loli_Ntabs) November 11, 2019
You guys will make anyone lose their job over a Joke as if you guys don't say things you're reprimanded of later. Unathi deserves all this anger understood, but to take it to a point of signing a petition to have her fired? Yho helang guys.
— Ketso🌼 (@Ketso28) November 11, 2019