PEOPLE are erratic. A high school teacher that told Moribego Madubanya that she wouldn’t be able to crack it in the media industry, has now become one of her fans.
“She posted on my Facebook page saying that she’s proud of me when I got nominated at the radio awards. I felt like commenting, saying ‘but you remember what you told me…’ but I didn’t, I just said thank you. That for me means I can do anything if I put my mind to and that I should never ever listen to someone tell me that I can’t do anything,” says Madubanya.
Popularly known as Ribi…Madubanya is growing her name as one the country’s dedicated young female radio content producers. In just months of her joining Alex FM, Madubanya was nominated in the National Community Radio Week Awards in two categories, The Best Talk Show and Best documentary show. “That was a huge deal for me. It meant I was on the right track. A few months after that, I got nominated at the Liberty awards, for Best content producer,” she says.
Having arrived in Gauteng in 2014 to pursue her media interests, the 23 year-old did her three year course at Boston Media House where she got her Diploma. “At the same time, I was working for a local newspaper, Greater Alex. After I graduated I decided to do radio.”
She says she’ll never stop writing, as it is her first love- she still writes on her blog every Thursday. But she jumped at the opportunity to join Alex FM when, while working for a business magazine that didn’t stretch her creatively. “At the business magazine I felt like, I wasn’t allowed to be as creative as I want to be. I wanted something more challenging. So I came to Alex FM…I actually had been trying to come to Alex FM for a couple of times,” she says, bursting into laughter.
Thanks to an article she wrote on Greater Alex, which was read on air by 702 broadcaster John Robbie, when 702 had a partnership with the community radio station that saw Robbie co-host his show with the Alex FM breakfast show. “He read my article on Alex FM and 702 simultaneously, that’s when Alex FM management started taking me serious.”
With no radio experience to her name, Madubanya was thrown into the deep when management put her in the drive time show to produce that coveted slot. “There was no producer for that show and management said ‘here’s a vacancy let’s see what you can do’ and in less than a year I had three award nominations.”
Management was impressed by the young lady from Botlokwa in Limpopo. Now that she’s solidified her name as content producer, she’s getting familiar with being in front of the mic and camera. “I do go on air, once in a while as a stand-in. It’s something I’m definitely looking into, for the future…I’ll be more on air and in front of the camera as time goes,” she says.
She has also worked as a line producer for musical film, Go Getta. “I want to be a media mogul. I come from Botlokwa and not a many people from there are in the media industry.”
Madubanya recalls a time when she was in high school, during the holidays when she had a recorder with her and wanted to interview some of the kids in the village on the device but was barred from doing so by her late grandmother. “I feel like when you’re from the village, you’re kinda forced to shrink yourself and not be a big dreamer. She said I can’t use the recorder there because people will think I’m trying to be better than them. ”
Reluctantly, she tucked the recorder away. “I felt like I had to be apologetic about my dreams. I feel that’s wrong.” With the work she’s doing now, she’s laying the foundation for other kids where she comes from and also reaffirming their dreams.
As the country celebrates women’s month, Madubanya believes women are still being seen as sexual objects-she gets asked questions like ‘who did you sleep with’ whenever award nominations come her way. “In every industry, there’s still patriarchy.”