AT 21 and still struggling to complete his secondary school education, Comet Radio’s Dj Kwaza is simply an amazing and inspiring talent.
And he is not only committed to entertaining and educating his ever growing number of listeners across the city of Lusaka, but the young broadcaster yearns to make a difference in someone’s life.
Born Kelvin Mwanza, Dj Kwaza is the presenter of the famous Kwaza Kutuka reality programme on which he thrives to find solutions to the under-privilege.
With issues of gender violence, broken marriages, property grabbing and street kids increasing daily, Dj Kwaza’s programme may be another answer.
The former St. Pauls Primary School pupil, who is yet to sit for his final Grade 12 examination, has been a fun of Comet Radio since 2000 when he was barely 10 years.
“I remember hanging around with the proprietor of Comet Radio, Given Mpande, when the station’s first office was situated in a bedroom in Lilanda Township,” recalls Dj Kwaza, the last born in a family of nine.
With a skeleton staff of six, Comet Radio, which now boasts of 21 members of staff, thus began transmitting from the densely populated township of Lilanda.
Other notable radio dee jays included Dj Spinner, Dj Grant, Dj Y-Zee, Dj Uncle G and Dj Tetiwe.
The station’s primary mission was to promote local music and its performers, who have been struggling to find their own image on the international market.
In between his early teeny stints at Comet Radio, Dj Kwaza was also a member of the Chazanga Community football club.
“I remember playing alongside the likes of Salulani Phiri currently one of ZANACO FC dependable defender,” said Dj Kwaza, a fan of English Premier League football club, Arsenal.
His football exploits later saw him feature for Twikatane football club where he was a regular goalkeeper.
But with his passion for the radio taking its toll on the young Kelvin, he quickly returned to the radio booth where he says his heart and dreams found comfort.
With its transmission now extended from Mazabuka to Kapiri Mposhi as well as Chongwe and Mumbwa towns, Dj Kwaza sought to discover his destiny.
Inspired by the likes of ZNBC’s Radio 4 djs Herbert “Dazo” Mutabi and Victor “Bunka Jacket” Mukungu, Dj Kwaza began to slam both secular and gospel music with emphasis on promoting different genres.
“Since storming the local music scene the likes of JK (Jordan Katembula), Danny (Siulapwa) the duo of Barbara Njovu and Saboi Imboela (Shatel) and late Lilly T managed to reinvent the local industry,” observed Dj Kwaza.
But over the last few years, like Dj Kwaza has observed, local artistes have been struggling to find their own original rhythm and identity.
He described as a “sad situation” where vulgar language has dominated in most local songs prompting even Information and Broadcasting Permanent Secretary, Amos Malupenga, to caution the artistes.
Dj Kwaza, who is also a self-trained, electrician, said there are a lot of subjects that our local singers can sing about instead of flooding the market with songs that are less educating.
“On my programmes, music that contains vulgar language and meaningless lyrics, have no space,” warned Dj Kwaza, a single father of two-year-old daughter, Erida.
Without taking anything away from the likes of Dalisoul, B1, T-Sean, Sakala Brothers, Shalawambe, Glorious band, Amayenge or the Air Power bands, music of yester-year has also been Dj Kwaza’s trade-mark.
Sighting the music of “Professor” P.K. Chishala, Paul Ngozi, Mulemena Boys, Serenje Kalindula and Masasu as typical examples, Dj Kwaza said the current crop of artistes have everything to learn from these music legends.
Through his Kwaza Kutaka radio fan club, Dj Kwaza has managed to expand the programme to most communities in Lusaka.
So far, Kwaza Kutuka has established zones in such areas as Lilanda (Zone A) and Chingwere (Zone B), where its members have been engaged in voluntary community services.
Dj Kawza appealed to Non-Governmental organisations and the government departments to partner with Kwaza Kutuka to find lasting solutions to most vulnerable societies in Lusaka.
“As Kwaza Kutuka, we have extended our projects to cleaning and collecting garbage around the communities of Lusaka as well as cleaning the hospitals and offering free counselling to patients,” said Dj Kwaza.
With Comet Radio still striving to reach-out to the rest of the country in the next five years, Dj Kwaza hopes Kwaza Kutuka will manage to capture more attention from other communities across the country.
With the help from his mentors Jabulani Chilenje, who at one time employed him as salesman at his shop in Chilenje market and Masiye Nirenda, Dj Kwaza is optimistic his organisation is destined to grow. God bless!
For comments: [email protected] or let’s chat on 0979360993/0964873656/0955627536.
source: UNTOLD PROFILES with FELIX NYAMBE – Daily Mail