After being repeatedly accused of child molestation for over a month, Afrika Bambaataa has finally been removed as the leader of the Zulu Nation.
As the accusations against Afrika Bambaataa have become more damning, the Zulu Nation appears to have finally distanced itself from the man who had long been at the helm of the international Afrocentric organization. The Zulu Nation put out a press release today confirming that the group has been placed under "new leadership" and that it plans to significantly alter the makeup of the organization.
"As part of this restructure ALL accused parties and those accused of covering up the current allegations of child molestation have been removed and have stepped down from their current positions," reads the statement. Though the press release never mentions Bambaataa by name, it is thus assumed that he is no longer the leader of the Zulu Nation, whether that means he stepped down or was forcefully revoked of his position.
The initial accusations against Bambaataa first arose at the end of March, and the primary accuser, former Bronx politician (and Zulu member, whom Bambaataa has denied knowing) Ronald Savage soon went into graphic detail regarding the assault he experienced as a teenager at the hands of Bambaataa. A week or so later, three more men came forward to disclose that they had suffered similar experiences of molestation. Just two days ago (May 4), Lord Shariyf, who identifies as Bambaataa's former bodyguard, stated that the hip-hop pioneer has likely molested "hundreds" of underage boys. Furthermore, he revealed that Bambaataa's pedophilia is a well-known fact within the Zulu community.
The Zulu Nation's new statement is a complete reversal of the position the group took when the accusations first surfaced, though, of course, that was when Bambaataa still held far-reaching authority. Savage's allegations had been denounced by a Zulu spokesman as "defamation and assassination of character."
The new press release sheds some light on the difficulty with which the Nation arrived at its current decision to restructure much of the organization: "As an organization we are in a very difficult position because we are being asked to condemn one of our founders based on testimony through social media alone. We cannot do this. We also cannot dismiss the comments of parties asserting they have been harmed." Though the "testimony" has certainly extended beyond social media, it seems that the mounting accusations could not be ignored any longer.
Read the full statement here.