Andile Gaelesiwe is a South African kwaito singer/songwriter, sexual rights campaigner and television presenter. Born in Soweto, Andile has been in the music scene since her early twenties - releasing albums and singles with International media company, BMG records.
I’ve been called a reluctant celebrity over the years. And I’m glad for it because it has everything to do with my background. At my age, I’m still afraid of the consequences, if an article comes out, what are my mom, my dad or my family going to say about it.— Andile Gaelesiwe, South African Kwaito Singer/Songwriter, Sexual Rights Campaigner and Television Presenter
I had a very serious love-hate relationship with the media when I was singing says Andile. She goes on to state that the reason could have been due to her appearance.
In an attempt to diversify her professional profile and boost the longevity of her career, Andile trained at the YFM radio station in Johannesburg and in 2001, she began working there. While working at YFM, Andile heard a young woman call in, she was threatening to commit suicide because she had been sexually abused.
This incident was a catalyst for Andile to speak out about her own abuse, in the hopes of helping other people. She revealed her history of sexual abuse, including being raped by her father at the age of 11. As she publicly began talking of her own history of childhood sexual abuse, hundreds of calls flooded the radio station.
Soon after the incident, she convinced YFM to initiate a department called YCARES. As the CSR director, she made an effort to assist where she could and overtime, accumulated a contact base of organizations and individuals involved in entrepreneurship, education, sexual violence and HIV/Aids. Andile consulted with experts in the field, and arranged meetings with callers who were affected, thus beginning her successful Open Disclosure Programme.
Her outgoing personality and past experiences made her a natural fit for the well known docu-reality show Khumbul'ekhaya - which promotes strength to resolve family problems, and a courage to communicate.
There’s Andile whose accountable for everything that she does, who’s actually both an intro-and-extrovert’— Andile Gaelesiwe, South African Kwaito Singer/Songwriter, Sexual Rights Campaigner and Television Presenter
Her journey with Khumbul'ekhaya began in 2006. The first 3-5 years of Khumbul'ekhaya was a struggle because management didn’t really watch the show says the presenter. It was seen as a programme that wouldn’t get viewers and make big TV says Andile.
Andile states that when they started receiving calls from the former President of South Africa, Thabo Mbeki then it started clicking that Khumbul'ekhaya is actually gold.
This is what I love about South Africa, South Africans are unpredictable. You’ll put something out there and you’ll think this is how they receive it and it’s not.— Andile Gaelesiwe, South African Kwaito Singer/Songwriter, Sexual Rights Campaigner and Television Presenter
The Khumbul'ekhaya presenter states that along the way they’ve fixed and changed things about the show. I feel like the show hasn’t started yet says Andile.
Have you ever seen a billboard for Khumbul'ekhaya? Have you ever seen adverting for Khumbul'ekhaya? The show runs on its own steam.— Andile Gaelesiwe, South African Kwaito Singer/Songwriter, Sexual Rights Campaigner and Television Presenter
Hear the full audio in the link below...
This article first appeared on 702 : ‘I’m the only remaining, original member of Khumbul'ekhaya' - Andile Gaelesiwe