Thembi Seete and JR join Somizi as ‘Idols SA season 18’ judges

16 February 2022 - 14:06
By Joy Mphande
Thembi Seete and JR join the 'Idols SA' judging panel.
Image: Supplied. Thembi Seete and JR join the 'Idols SA' judging panel.

Season 18 of Idols SA will feature a revamped judging panel as Thembi Seete and JR Bogopa are set to join the upcoming season, replacing Randall Abrahams and Unathi Nkayi. 

This follows after the director of local entertainment channels for M-Net Shirley Adonisi revealed to TshisaLIVE in late January that they had decided to not renew Randall and Unathi's contracts as they were taking a “fresh approach” in the upcoming season of the show.

Tebogo "ProVerb" Thekisho remains host for his 13th season, and fan favourite and  media personality Somizi Mhlongo is set to make his return to the music competition.

Amid reports of Somizi and his estranged husband dealing with abuse allegations, M-Net had given the media personality “time-off” from the show to resolve his personal issues but had fans petitioning for his return.

Actress and pop icon Thembi is no stranger to the judge’s chair as she was a guest judge in Idols SA season 17, bringing her bubbly energy and constructive critique to the contestants, which had social media users sing her praises.

Entrepreneur and rapper JR will make his first appearance as a judge on the show. His wealth of knowledge and experience in the music industry has given the executive head of programming: general entertainment Nomsa Philiso the confidence he and Thembi are well-suited for the job.

“We’re excited to have Idols SA return for an incredible 18th season. To have such longevity in such a fast-changing industry is no small feat, and we’re proud to keep giving our viewers what they love. One of the key components in having staying power is evolution, and our new-look panel is part of that,” she said.

Idols SA is an important part of our creative industry. Not only do we unearth hidden talent, but we also nurture our contestants and equip them with the necessary tools to start or grow their careers. It’s a privilege to be able to do that for another season.”