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Universal Zulu Nation responds to molestation allegations against Afrika Bambaataa

By | Published on Monday 4 April 2016

Afrika Bambaataa

A spokesperson for Afrika Bambaataa’s Universal Zulu Nation organisation has issued a statement responding to allegations made against the hip hop pioneer last week.

The allegations were made by one Ronald Savage, whose career to date has included an active role in the Democratic Party in New York State, and who claims that in the late 1970s, when he was aged twelve to fourteen, he was sexually assaulted by Bambaataa. Savage seemingly made similar allegations in a book back in 2014.

According to AllHipHop, Savage says: “It took me this long to actually get this out and to really to be able to talk about it freely. Back when I was younger, I was a kid when this happened, I wanted to be down with the in-crowd, not really understanding that what Bambaataa was doing to me was actually molesting me. I didn’t understand that. I knew it was wrong. I just had feelings that was like ‘yuck'”.

Savage says he never reported the alleged crime at the time, or since, because he feared reprisals from the Zulu Nation group. But a spokesperson for that organisation has denied all the allegations made by Savage, while threatening legal action over the claims.

In a long statement, Zulu Nation’s spokesperson implies that Savage may be motivated by malice after being eased out of Bambaataa’s organisation. The statement says: “Over the past few years, we at the Universal Zulu Nation have cancelled the membership of individuals within our organisation due to inactivity, impropriety and violation of policies and bylaws. Unfortunately, these individuals chose to respond to their ousting with false, negative, slanderous, defaming and accusatory allegations, including referring to our wonderful and peaceful organisation as ‘a gang'”.

The statement goes on: “The credibility of the Zulu Nation will not be tarnished by a few who choose to join the ranks of magazines, radio shows and gossip columnists whose sole purpose is to give legs to rumours and falsehoods with salacious headlines and stories”.

The spokesperson then says that “Universal Zulu Nation vehemently denies any and all current or former claims made against any of our members from former disgruntled members or otherwise. As our organisation grows and nears its 42nd anniversary, and as membership rises, we understand deflectors will take any opportunity to gain notoriety or fame, while attempting to discredit the Zulu Nation”.

The hip hop group concludes by saying that it is now taking legal advice on Savage’s allegations. It remains to be seen if any defamation action is subsequently taken.