Since his photo went viral last week, one of him looking frail as he hustled at a construction site, former Ogopa deejays singing star Colonel Mustafa has been a man on the news.
Some have ridiculed him as a fallen star with friends praising him for his bravery in taking what looked like an odd job.
And speaking with The Standard yesterday, the former Deux Vultures singer said life had taken a toll on him because of the family medical pressure adding that he was not ashamed of working at a construction site and was not aware of how the video got on social media.
He, however, asked friends to keep praying for him and assisting his family financially.
“I have heard many stories from people’s comments since the video went out. It is unfortunate that someone took the video. Probably it is a good thing he did. I did not intend to go public about my family issues,” Mustafa told Standard Entertainment.
“I have been doing this for quite a while and as a family, we had kept this matter to ourselves as we worked out every possible solution to get our mother treated. We all know the entertainment situation in the country and how musicians like me have been struggling to make a living out of art and so I could not bury my head pretending that I am a celeb who can’t take odd jobs yet I know I needed to do everything humanly possible to help mum,” Mustafa said.
According to the singer, his mother was diagnosed with cancer early last year.
“She called me up and said she needed to come to the city for a checkup as she was vomiting a lot and feeling weighed down. Then, I was living in a bedsitter and I was running a shop that could only support my personal expenses as I waited for the entertainment scene to open up after the Covid-19 showbiz lull.
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“I asked her to come over. I moved in with her at my brother’s house, which is a one bedroomed house, slightly bigger than mine. We had to save all we had for chemotherapy. She is old and in desperate need of help. Before music and all the fame, my mum was with me and so I would do anything for her. Now that my friends asked if they can create a medical fund for my mum, I accepted and I am grateful to all who have come out showing us their support,” the singer opened up.
The Music Copyright Society of Kenya (MCSK) CEO Dr Ezekiel Mutua also came to Mustafa’s aid by giving him a financial boost toward the medical bill.
“I have mad love and respect for people who face life head-on and do what a man has got to do to put food on the table. There is absolutely no shame in taking up a ‘mjengo’ project to feed yourself and your loved ones. Unlike other celebrities, Mustafa has refused to wallow in self-pity and is not ashamed of his hustle. And by the way, ‘mjengo’ is not necessarily for failures. It is a job like any other. But it takes courage for a celebrity of the caliber of Mustafa to take to such menial activities with pride,” Mutua said, adding that even though the singer is not a registered member of MCSK, he had opted to give him his personal support.
“I have found out that he is not a member of MCSK but that does not stop me from helping him. He has such a clean heart and you can tell he is a genuine person. I will meet him up after he gets off that pressure. What is most important for now is for him to get help for a sick mother,” Mutua told Standard Entertainment.
Music producer and rapper Dennis Kaggia aka DNA stood by the singer as he encouraged men to take up any job to fulfill their financial responsibilities noting that shaming men for their choice jobs was unacceptable.
“Colonel Mustafa, God damn, he’s working hard. I’m proud of you, bro. I am so proud of you because, unlike many others, you have understood the program. Say no to status games in 2023 and do whatever it takes to fix your life,” DNA said via social media.
“First, know who your real friends are. As a man, you want friends, not just well-wishers who only think about ‘give me, give me, give me. To be the greatest, you have to be the lowest. You have to learn money and to learn money, you have to burn money. That’s how the game goes. My friends, never be ashamed of your hustle, never, ever be ashamed of your hustle,'” DNA went on.
The singer whose real name is Daudi Mustapha rose to fame together with his fellow Deux Vultures member, Nasty Thomas, real name Thomas Konzanga, back in 2000.
The two started their music career at the then-popular Florida 2000 nightclub before signing with Ogopa Deejays where they released their debut single Mona Lisa, a song that propelled them to national stardom, winning then the Tanzania and Uganda category at the 2004 Kisima Music Awards (the two grew up in Tanzania).
Then, they protested against the organisers of the awards saying they had been placed in the wrong category since they are Kenyans. It later emerged that Mustafa had been raised in a multicultural home with a Kenyan father whose name is Germa Mustafa, married to Fatma, a Tanzanian woman.
Their other hit songs included Kinyaunyau, Mufupi, Kapatikana, Katika, Teremka and Adhiambo C.
Come 2008, Mustafa embarked on a solo project as Nasty Thomas quit music. The following year Mustafa enjoyed success after Ogopa released his Hey Baby, a seductive love song where he was featured by his then-singer girlfriend Marya.
He has since released other hits like Loboko with his latest hit Maloko having been released last year.