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Tragedy Strikes: Two Members of Shaka Illembe Production Succumb to Food Poisoning

9The South African television industry is in mourning following the tragic deaths of two esteemed members of the Shaka Illembe production team due to food poisoning. Shaka Illembe, a series that delves into the life of King Shaka of the Zulu Kingdom, has captivated audiences nationwide with its compelling narrative and stellar performances. The show, produced by Bomb Production for Mnet and aired on DSTV 161 Mzansi Magic, has become a cultural phenomenon since its debut in June 2023.


Created by Angus Gibson, Desiree Markgraff, Teboho Mahlatsi, and Nhlapho Mtaka, Shaka Illembe quickly garnered acclaim. Notable performances by Nomzamo Mbatha as Queen Nandi KaBhebhe and Senzo Radebe as King Senzangakhona KaJama brought the rich history of the Zulu Kingdom to life.

As fans eagerly anticipated Season 2, the production was struck by a tragic incident. Reports from MDN News confirmed that an outbreak of food poisoning claimed the lives of two cherished team members. An assistant make-up artist was among the victims, though the identity of the second individual has not been disclosed.


A spokesperson for ZiMoja reflected on the impact of this tragedy: “The success of Season 1 of Shaka Illembe captivated viewers and set the stage for an eagerly awaited return. Tragically, our set was struck by food poisoning, claiming the lives of two valued colleagues.”


The untimely deaths have cast a shadow over the production, raising concerns about potential delays for Season 2. The cast and crew are now grappling with the loss of their colleagues, as the future of the series remains uncertain.

As the entertainment industry mourns this heartbreaking loss, we honor the memory of those who contributed so much to Shaka Illembe. Their dedication and spirit will be remembered, and their legacy will live on through the series. May they rest in peace.

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