South African singer and songwriter, Lady Zamar, courageously speaks out about her harrowing experience of an alleged rape, emphasizing that the dismissal of her case by the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) does not invalidate her truth.
In a candid interview with City Press, the Collide hitmaker, known by her real name Yamikani Janet Banda, shares the profound impact of the alleged sexual assault by her ex-partner, Sjava, revealing the compounded trauma and lasting effects of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) she has endured.
Despite facing backlash and accusations of falsehood on social media following the NPA’s decision due to insufficient evidence, Lady Zamar remains resolute in her truth.
Having been subjected to slander and intentional harm since her case was dismissed earlier this year, the Tembisa-born artist remains determined to shed light on the gravity of her experience.
In 2017, Lady Zamar bravely came forward to accuse her ex-boyfriend of rape, an accusation vehemently denied by him.
Subsequently, she filed a case against Sjava, who sought to have the charges against him dropped through a high court application.
Fast forward to 2020, when the NPA’s dismissal of Lady Zamar’s case against Sjava left the 36-year-old artist facing the unjust perception of lying about such a profoundly serious matter.
However, after a period of laying low, Lady Zamar finds her voice once again, speaking out about the incident that led her into a state of severe depression.
In an interview with City Press, Lady Zamar expressed the following – “Mentally, I struggled for a very long time.
In 2017, I had just dropped my first album, King Zamar, and then something really bad happened to me.
I was never really allowed to deal with it because I had to keep being Lady Zamar.
I was completely unaware that I didn’t deserve that. I used to feel like it was my fault that it happened to me, so I kept quiet for so long.
I know that a question a lot of people ask themselves is, ‘Why did she take forever to open a case after what happened?’
It was really bad, I didn’t think I had the right to. The NPA’s decision doesn’t change the fact that it happened.”
Lady Zamar revealed that as a consequence of the NPA’s decision, she was diagnosed with compound PTSD and depression.
“Through a psychologist and psychiatrist, I was able to finally realize that I was never to blame. That is when I really started to heal. That was in 2020 and in 2021.
I was still dealing with the anger and resentment I had. Last year, when I dropped my first single, I was still testing the waters.
This year, I’ve finally healed. I’ve forgiven myself for being ignorant, for not realizing that a lot of people are bad.
I’ve forgiven myself for not being confident in myself. I saw that I could stand up to everybody and the monsters around me.”
Lady Zamar’s bravery in sharing her truth serves as a reminder of the challenges faced by survivors of sexual assault, highlighting the urgent need for support, understanding, and a compassionate society that stands with them.