CR Magazine chats with Nehemiah Tjatji, the host of Verified which is an entertainment show airing on SABC 1 -Mzansi Fosho every Thursday at 19:30. SABC 1 launched a debut episode on the 1st of November 2018. We congratulate both Nehemiah and Verified for finding each other.
Theme 1: Nehemiah Tjatji.
Q: Please give us a bit of background about Nehemiah.
A: 26year old Nehemiah is from Witbank/Emalahleni, Mpumalanga, South Africa. Originally born in Kempton Park, Gauteng. Nehemiah has lived in various places within Gauteng and Mpumalanga. Let’s just say, “I have never lived in one place for more than 7years, constantly moving from one place to another. I have been to 7 different schools. Of which 4 are primary schools and 2 High schools.”
Q: To what/ whom do you owe your success?
A: I owe my success to God, my family who have been very supportive and to the people who have been a helping hand from a young age to where I am today.
Q: What is your strength and how has it propelled you as a brand?
A: My motto in life is my strength – Live to Inspire. In everything I do, I always remind myself that I am doing what I am doing to serve and to inspire someone else to become great. Moreover, for them to realize the purpose God has given to them. Everything in growing my brand revolves around that phrase.
Q: What are your areas of development/weaknesses and how have you compensated for them?
A: We all have weaknesses that come in different forms and phases throughout our lives. The fear of what I can possibly become and what it requires of me to get there has been a big challenge over the years. So, I had to take things step by step, learning, developing myself, discovering more, being patient, practicing discipline, working hard and eliminating laziness and allowing myself to make mistakes as part of growth.
Q5: Where do we see Nehemiah in the upcoming years?
A: In years to come, regardless of what I would have possibly achieved within the entertainment industry and through entrepreneurship, I will continue to serve others, inspire the masses and press towards the highest point of my calling.
Theme 2: Verified
Q: Give us a brief intro about the show, “verified.”
A: Verified is merely an entertainment reality show on Sabc1 that gives two skits/hilarious content creators an opportunity to showcase their work in 4 different themes with an audience that’s there to rate their clips and Verify the MVP of that Episode. In short, it’s the ultimate clash of the funny online video clips.
Q: What should people do to participate in this show?
A: Well hopefully in the 2nd season people will have to submit their work to the production to be chosen to compete. Otherwise, they should be skit/content makers.
Q: What are the challenges you faced before emerging as a presenter for this show?
A: The challenges were more about always trying to find that one opportunity that will put you in the game. So, it was a series of auditions, voluntary work to push my craft and eventually when I had to audition for Verified I was ready and prepared to do my best hence I emerged victoriously and was chosen to host the show.
Q: The media industry keeps growing by the day, how will you manage to stay afloat?
A: In every change or the evolving of any industry there are always new methods, ways, avenues and tools that one should capitalize on to do and be better. Otherwise, what helps me to stay afloat in the entertainment industry is being true to who am, what I want and how I want it; as supposed to trying to remain relevant and lose your authenticity. Times and things will forever change and evolve, but originality (without ignorance and arrogance) is appropriate in every change.
Theme 3: Nehemiah’s views on gender roles.
Q: What is the first thing that comes to mind when you hear the following words?
A: Men – The Image of God. Power. Dominion. People who have the potential to love, provide and protect.
A: Feminism – Equality and defining the pivotal roles women play in our societies and that they too are as powerful and highly valued.
A: Development – Opportunity to educate, equip and empower.
Q: What would you tell the 15-year-old Nehemiah if he was with you?
A: Thank you for dreaming, because 26-year-old Nehemiah is now in the process of becoming…
Q: Are there any transformational changes that need to be effected in your industry? If so, what are they and how can you lend yourself to that process?
A: Yes there are. The regulations in our industry should favour talent in owning their image and being compensated rightfully so. My involvement starts in knowing my worth and advocating for authenticity, inclusivity and the spirit of serving others.
Theme 4: Readership
Q: What are your views about the culture of reading in African Black Communities?
A: In most cases, the mindset of people in African Black Communities is limited and not exposed to much. Therefore the reason to read, to know more and to explore is far-fetched. Thus, the culture of reading is still yet to be fully established.
Q: What is the best way to promote the culture of reading in Black African Communities?
A: Exposing Black African Communities to the literary world around them. Cause when you are exposed you become curious when you curious you want to know more when you want to know more you start identifying ways of consuming information and of which one of those ways is reading.
Q: What is your advice to people who do not read?
A: The world is like a book if you don’t read you will forever be stuck in one place.