Opinion Piece: Does Babes Wodumo owe us basic English?

There have been many comments about her inabilities to even speak basic English, but does it matter?

By  | Dec 05, 2018, 07:57 PM

Twitter reacts to Babes Wodumo's good news

Since Babes Wodumo stepped into the scene last year, she has received just as much criticism as she has received praise.  The most common criticism she's received thus far is how she carries herself during interviews.

Babes Wodumo is known for her dance moves, colourful hair, carefree spirit plus she's the youths favourite celebrity at the moment.

There is one thing Bongekile Simelane is not known for and that’s her knowledge of the English language.  Tho Wololo singer prides herself in speaking nothing but her home language of Isizulu everywhere she goes, whether its in her music or during interviews.

Babes Wodumo
Instagram/@Babes_Wodumo

In a recent tweet, someone said that ‘’Babes Wodumo owes us basic English’’. I would have to agree with that.

I'm all for being true to your roots, embracing who you are and being proud of your mother tongue but some basic English wouldn't hurt. 

Babes has entered an industry that requires her to travel a lot, do numerous interviews as well plus, most of those interviews are conducted in English. Not everyone understands isiZulu and it puts some of her non-Zulu speaking fans at a disadvantage as they probably do not understand what she is saying half of the time.

Granted, some interviews provide subtitles for those who do not understand the language she is speaking but most do not, and you can't exactly put subtitles on a radio interview now can you?

Read: Social media reacts to Babes Wodumo's great news

Most of us are just getting by with our basic isiZulu so surely Babes Wodumo can also get by with some basic English right?

Now don't get me confused with her being fluent in English, the opinion is not about her being fluent in the language but her meeting us half way to make her interviews more enjoyable to watch or to listen to when it comes to her non-Zulu speaking fans which I'm sure she has many of.

Nathi is also a person who prides himself in strictly speaking in his home language, but we've heard Nathi speak some basic English in one or two interviews.

Watch: London's Ubunifu crew react to Babes Wodumo's Wololo

It is not about being forced to speak the English language but it is about opening greater means of communication with her many fans who either speak or understand the language better than isiZulu. Also, Babes Wodumo's fan base has extended throughout South African borders and I'm convinced they would love to understand what the Gqom queen is talking about when being interviewed.

What are your thoughts?

Main Image Credit: Instagram/@BabesWodumo