Monday 16th October, 2017
I have noted with concern the speculative remarks and accusations made by several individuals on social media pertaining the late P-Jay’s tombstone.
I have been quiet over this matter for three (3) years and the public has continued to take pictures and videos of P-Jay’s grave and putting them on social media to show the world the current state of the grave. Most people have accused me and others of fundraising for a tombstone but I have never said a word. The reason I have not been responding to the accusations is because I do not think it is good for me or anyone who has helped P-Jay’s family to start listing the things that we have done to help. However, I think it is important for me to correct every person who has been publishing misleading information meant to tarnish the image of some Zambian artists (including myself) by accusing us of squandering money meant for the late P-Jay’s tombstone.
It is sad to note that most of the comments are coming from people who are so misinformed. It is also sad to observe that P-Jay’s family has not defended me whenever the public has put the blame on me regarding the alleged misappropriatio
Firstly, I would like to clear my name by stating that I have never organized, attended or participated in any P-Jay memorial/
Secondly, I wish to inform all fans of P-Jay’s music that I made numerous strides during and after the funeral to help raise funds for the family. Some people have alleged that I sold P-Jay CDs and t-shirts without handing over the money to the family. May I correct that accusation now. You might be interested to know that at the time of his demise, P-Jay had sold the rights to most of his music, making it difficult for the family to benefit from his intellectual property. For about 6 months after P-Jay’s death, I worked closely with his family to help reverse all such transactions. After a long time of negotiations, I successfully won that battle and all the rights were transferred to the family. P-Jay and I had a collaboration album called ‘Dabo Trabo‘. I permitted the family to make copies of that album and to keep all the revenue from its sales. The family printed copies of three (3) albums, namely Dabo Trabo, The Future and Imbeketi. They also printed t-shirts for sale. You may wish to know that I sacrificed my time to help sell that merchandise with the help of my Music For Change team members JC Starboy and Nelson Chisenga. We reduced ourselves to street vendors and went door-to-door selling CDs and t-shirts on behalf of P-Jay’s family. We used our own resources to meet the daily costs of selling P-Jay’s merchandise. Not a single day did we ask the family for money to buy us lunch or a bottle of water after spending long days in the sun. We successfully sold all the t-shirts and CDs that the family had assigned to us. Every transaction was recorded in a book that was handed over to the family together with all the money.
In 2015, I introduced the family to at least six (6) companies that were handling P-Jay’s revenue. I must say it made me happy whenever the family collected money from any of those companies because I felt we were finally winning. Please note that I did not receive any of that money in my hands because I am not P-Jay’s administrator. Therefore all such funds are paid to the legally appointed administrators from the family (names withheld). My only role was to facilitate the beginning of the transactions between the family and the entities that were paying.
Most of you may recall that I posthumously accepted the late P-Jay’s Best R&B award at the 2015 Zambian Music Awards. May I report that I handed over the trophy and the prize money to the family.
Further, in February 2016, I witnessed a payment amounting to over K40,000 that the family received from one entity (name withheld). This was at a time when I was about to leave for England. Before I left, I had a meeting with the family and I told them that I would be the happiest person in the world to see a headstone on P-Jay’s grave once I returned. To my surprise, when I came back in March 2016, I did not see a headstone. When I asked, I was told that the family decided they would buy it later in May 2016. Their reason was that it was too early. I did not agree with that decision; but who am I to interfere with the family’s decision?
Today many of you are saying B’Flow and other artists have neglected P-Jay’s grave because there is no tombstone there. May I start by informing you that I am the one that negotiated for and secured P-Jay’s burial spot at Memorial Park, so I can tell you that it is not even allowed to put a tombstone where PJ’s body lies. What is allowed is a headstone.
Before you continue putting the blame on me and other artists, have you had a word with the family? Before you start blaming the Zambia Association of Musicians (ZAM), have you found out if PJ was a member? I wish people knew the things I have done before dragging my name in this matter.
My humble appeal to my strongest critiques on this issue is that instead of pointing fingers at B’Flow, Ruff Kid, Bryan, Slap D, Kay Figo, Mampi, Judy, Alpha Romeo, Macky 2 or any other artist that you say was close to P-Jay, why not offer your help if you really care about P-Jay’s legacy? I will always support P-Jay’s legacy in the best way possible.
I would have loved to continue keeping quiet about this matter but I am forced to give my side of the story in order to clear my name (hopefully).
Because this is a matter of public interest, I would like to publicly announce what I have decided to do going forward and I hope it puts the P-Jay tombstone issue to rest. I hereby offer the prize money from the 2017 KMA Best Humanitarian Award that I won last week towards the purchase of P-Jay’s headstone (not tombstone). If the family will give me a go ahead, I will make the purchase myself or through my team.
DISCLAIMER: The contents of this press release are my own and do not represent the views of any artist mentioned in it.
NOTE: This press release is not in any way intended to discredit P-Jay’s family. It is meant to clear my name from accusations labeled against me by some sections of the public. I thank you.
Issued by Brian “B Flow” Bwembya, Lusaka, Zambia.