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Why visiting Zimbabwean comedian fears for his life

Visiting Zimbabwean stand-up comedian, Carl Joshua Ncube, is a worried man, and its not a laughing matter.

Ncube, who will be one of the guest performers at the inaugural Laugh Festival on Friday night at Carnivore grounds in Nairobi, says he fears for his life following threats he has been receiving from the Zimbabwean government for his politically incorrect performances.

The comedian made the revelation during a press briefing on Friday afternoon at a Nairobi hotel. According to Mr Ncube, it has become very difficult for him and other comedians in Zimbabwe to freely express themselves.

“I do not perform as much as I would love to back home because the authorities always shut our shows,” said Mr Ncube, who pleaded with the Kenyan media to highlight his plight.

“I hope you as Kenyans can help highlight this so that when I say something negative about the government I will not be locked up,” he said.

STOP JOKING

In 2015 Ncube was quoted saying that he had been forced to stop jokes on religious and political leaders owing to fear but some of his statements are inconspicuously concealed to evade danger.

“My comedy receives death threats more from religious leaders and businessmen than I get from the state. So it is important for people to be able to take the joke because our people are stressed and need something to relax them,” he said.

The organizers of the event in Nairobi, Laugh Industry, have lined up a cast of some of the funniest comedians on the continent for the show which will be hosted by Daniel Ndambuki of the Churchill Show fame.

Among the guest performers will be Uganda’s Salvado, Nkusi Arthur (Rwanda), Eddie Kadi (DR Congo), South African Ndumsio Lindi and Daliso Chaponda from Malawi.

Also on stage for special appearances will be a selection of Churchill Show comedians, such as MC Jessy, Prof Hamo, Sleepy and Aman.

Tickets for the show that begins at 6pm are on sale at ticketsasa with a regular ticket going for Sh 2,000 and VIP tickets going for Sh 4,000.