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Nelisiwe Sibiya on being abused: I remember it so clearly, I know the pain

Nelisiwe Sibiya talks 16 Days of Activism campaign & the memories it triggers about her abusive past

14 November 2018 - 09:00 By Chrizelda Kekana
Actress and singer Nelisiwe Sibiya wants to help other abuse victims come out alive and stronger on the other side.
Actress and singer Nelisiwe Sibiya wants to help other abuse victims come out alive and stronger on the other side.
Image: Instagram/Nelisiwe Sibiya

For actress and singer Nelisiwe Sibiya, activism against women and children abuse can never be an "event" for 16 days only. She says because of her own story of abuse she'll never turn down an opportunity to use her life to influence others.

Speaking to TshisaLIVE Nelisiwe said her own experiences as a victim of physical abuse at the hands of an unnamed male figure in her home when she was younger ignited a desire to help others live to tell their tales.

"I've been abused. I was still very young and my younger sister and I were abused. It was more of physical abuse and I know with my sister, it was more than that, because she had to do certain things in order for us not be kicked out of the house were staying in."

The actress is partnering with Kelly Khumalo, Cici, Mandisa Nduna, Hulisani Ravele, Nelisiwe Sibiya and Dineo Nchabeleng to lend their voices to curb the scourge of gender-based violence.

The Mama Ka Bafana hitmaker said that  every time she heard of another woman being killed or abused, it triggered the memories of her own pain. She explained that healing was an ongoing process, but she was grateful she was in a better space that now allows her to help others.

"I remember it so clearly. I know the pain, trust me, I really know that pain and I have been able to survive to be the strong person that I am today. I used music as an escape and, at some point, worked up enough courage to speak about it so I could start healing. I want to help others who, like me, have endured abuse because they are poor or are dependent on their abusers."

This particular take on the 16 days of Activism campaign is produced and shot by Blackbrain Pictures, which is owned by Mandla N and directed by Athi Petela.

They will be shared on the celebrities' platforms throughout the 16 days.

“I am passionate about storytelling, I am a black woman and I know the hardships we face. I am excited about the people involved in this project. Some survivors of these atrocities, some having encountered abuse in their families, some in relationships - we all know of someone that has been abused and this is why we need to stand up and do something,” added Athi.