GOSPEL songbird Fungisai Zvakavapano-Mashavave pulled out of the Red Rose Entertainment-sponsored gospel concert held at the Harare International Conference Centre for a more lucrative deal with the Zimbabwe Tourism Authority, it has emerged.
On the same day she was billed to perform alongside Mai Suluma, as she is popularly known on stage, Fungisai was performing at the ZTA end-of-year Tourism Night.
Although ZTA corporate communications manager Sugar Chagonda said he did not want to be drawn into the wrangle, he confirmed ZTA had signed a contract with Fungisai to perform at the Victoria Falls gig alongside Alick Macheso, Jah Prayzah, Mbare Chimurenga Choir, Energy Mutodi, Sulumani Chimbetu and Sandra Ndebele among others.
"We signed a contract with Fungisai and other musicians for the Victoria Falls Tourism Night and we don't want to be drawn into the wrangle you are talking about. As ZTA we have worked well with Fungisai for a long time and we wish to continue working with her. She performed as per contract on December 29 after leaving Harare for Victoria Falls on December 28," Chagonda said.
But Fungisai raised the ire of some of her fans after she pulled out from the Mai Suluma's homecoming gig dubbed "Mai Suluma In Concert" at the last minute.
She complained that promoter Barbara "Mama Red Rose" Chikosi had diminished her brand by putting a small picture of her on the posters. Fungisai stongly believes her brand was bigger than Mai Suluma's and so she was not supposed to curtain raise for Mai Suluma.
Some critics are calling it the "Sai-Sai" tiff or war.
Speaking live on Star FM this week, Fungisai cleared the air and dismissed the "Sai-Sai" war saying there was no bad blood between her and Mai Suluma.
"We never had a problem with Mai Suluma, but the show promoter, we are not on talking terms," she said.
Contacted for comment, Mama Red Rose, said Fungisai should have been honest with her from the word go.
"What problem is she talking about?" she asked, adding: "Did she ever try to call me or come to my office? Look, I am a businesswoman and had she told me earlier I would have understood her situation because it is all about making money."