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Melusi Mbele Exits Scandal! After Reported Clash with Directors

Melusi Mbele Exits Scandal! After Reported Clash with Directors

Renowned actor Melusi Mbele, best known for his role as Jojo Kubeka, has officially exited the popular e.tv soapie Scandal! This departure follows reports of a significant altercation with the show’s directors. Entertainment commentator Phil Mphela confirmed Mbele’s exit, adding that Jojo’s storyline concluded on Monday, 17 June 2024.

Melusi Mbele’s Departure

Melusi Mbele’s portrayal of Jojo Kubeka earned him a Safta (South African Film and Television Award) for Best Actor in a TV Soap in 2023. His performance won widespread acclaim, making Jojo a beloved character among fans. IOL confirmed Mbele’s award win, further highlighting his impact on the show.

Mbele is the second major actor to leave Scandal! this season, following Mathews Rantsoma, who played Nhlamulo. Rantsoma is set to exit the show on 24 July 2024, having announced his resignation to pursue other ventures.

“Matthews approached us to advise us that he would like to pursue other ventures. The production and the channel support his decision and have agreed to release him. He will exit the story at the end of July. We wish success in his future,” reads the statement from the soapie.

Rantsoma joined Scandal! in 2021, playing the role of Lindiwe’s (Nomvelo Makhanya) lover and Vuvu’s (Mamarumo Marokane) baby daddy.

Scandal! Faces Viewer Challenges

Recent figures from the Broadcasting Research Council of South Africa (BRCSA) indicate that Scandal! has experienced a decline in viewership. As of May, the soapie is in fourth place with 3.5 million viewers, a drop from the 3.8 million viewers it had in April. The show was overtaken by Smoke and Mirrors, which is now the third most-watched TV show on e.tv with 3.6 million viewers.

The loss of viewership can be traced back to March when Scandal! lost its signature first position to SABC1’s soapie, Skeem Saam, which debuted in the 19:30 timeslot. Skeem Saam has seen an increase in viewership, reaching 4 million viewers in April and 4.43 million viewers in May.

As Scandal! navigates these changes and challenges, the departures of key actors like Melusi Mbele and Mathews Rantsoma mark a significant shift for the show. Fans and the production team alike will be watching closely to see how the soapie evolves in response.

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