Lady Zamar, whose real name is Yamikani Janet Banda, has opened up about the withdrawn rape charges against her ex-boyfriend, Sjava, and the emotional toll it has taken on her.
In an interview with City Press, the renowned singer, known for her hit song “Love Is Blind,” expressed the difficulty she has faced in coming to terms with the National Prosecuting Authority’s (NPA) decision to withdraw the charges.
Lady Zamar revealed that she has utilized her break from music to focus on her healing journey.
RAPE ALLEGATION AGAINST SJAVA
In 2018, Lady Zamar filed a rape case against Sjava, who vehemently denied the allegations and sought to have the matter heard in the high court.
“As a final statement on this matter, I write to you as my colleagues, business partners, peers, and supporters to inform you that I will not be engaging on matters of assault and abuse leveled against me on social media or any other platform. I have instituted legal proceedings in the high court of SA, and as such, the matter is now sub judice,” he stated in his response.
However, in 2020, the NPA declined to proceed with the prosecution, citing insufficient evidence to support a successful case, as reported by Sowetan.
HOW IT AFFECTED HER MENTAL HEALTH
Since then, the singer, Lady Zamar, has become a target of online harassment and cyberbullying on Twitter whenever she expresses her views.
“I’ve been good. I remained quiet, not getting involved in anything. I was just living my best life, but at the same time struggling with certain adjustments,” shared Lady Zamar.
The artist acknowledged that the alleged rape incident had a profound impact on her mental well-being.
“Mentally, I struggled for a long time. In 2017, shortly after releasing my first album, King Zamar, something terrible happened to me. I was never given the opportunity to properly address it because I had to maintain the persona of Lady Zamar. I genuinely believed that I was at fault and blamed myself. So, I stayed silent for a long time. I understand that people often wonder why it took me so long to speak up. It was an extremely traumatic experience, and I didn’t feel entitled to share it.”
Lady Zamar revealed that in 2020, she was diagnosed with compound post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and severe depression.
“Through therapy with a psychologist and psychiatrist, I eventually realized that I was never to blame. That’s when my true healing journey began. It started in 2020 and carried into 2021. I still grappled with anger and resentment. Last year, when I released my first single, I was still testing the waters. But this year, I have finally reached a point of healing. I have forgiven myself for my ignorance, for not realizing that there are truly malicious people out there. I have forgiven myself for lacking self-confidence. I have learned to stand up for myself and confront the monsters around me.”
Lady Zamar emphasized that the NPA’s decision does not negate the fact that the incident occurred, reaffirming the lasting impact it has had on her life.