Singer and songwriter Zahara recently found herself on the wrong side of the law.
The talented artist, whose real name is Bulelwa Mkutukana, failed to appear in the Palm Ridge Specialised Commercial Crimes Court and she was found guilty of being in contempt of court.
Daily Sun has learnt Zahara failed to appear in court after several summons in April, and the court issued a warrant for her arrest on that same day and but she only appeared in court on 7 June 2021.
According to NPA spokeswoman Phindi Mjonondwane, the singer who is set to release an album this month is charged in her personal capacity as well as a representative of her company, Zahara Trading (Pty) Ltd.
She faces charges relating to the non-submission of personal and company income-tax returns to Sars.
Mjonondwane said the state prosecutor, Nerissa Reddy from the Johannesburg Specialised Tax Unit, argued the singer’s reasons for not appearing in court were highly unreasonable.
“Mkutukana only appeared in court when the commercial crimes investigators, Warrant Officer Pillay and Constable Tumber, began to trace her whereabouts,” she said.
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According to Mjonondwane, the state argued her celebrity status didn’t give her impunity from facing justice.
“Justice should be meted out equally, as everyone is equal in the eyes of the law and should be treated as such,” she said.
Mjonondwane said the magistrate found Zahara’s reasons for not appearing in court unreasonable and found her guilty. She was issued a fine of R1 500 or three-months imprisonment.
According to the NPA, her next court appearance date is on 25 June 2021 and the matter was postponed for disclosure of the contents of the docket to her legal representative.
The NPA further revealed that Zahara’s bail conditions were that she must hand in her passport to the commercial crimes’ officers within 24 hours and to report to the Roodepoort Police Station on Tuesdays and Thursdays, between 8am and 6pm.
The People’s Paper reached out to Zahara for a comment, but her phone rang unanswered. The SunTeam further contacted her manager from Warner Music South Africa, Eric Gyimah, who said they were not commenting on the matter.