Tanzanian film actress Elizabeth Michael Kimemeta popularly known as Lulu, 17 years of age (approaching 18) was last week arraigned at Kisutu Resident Magistrate’s Court. She is charged with the murder of local movie star Steven Kanumba, whom is also Lulu’s boyfriend.
State Attorney Elizabeth Kaganda alleged before Magistrate Augusta Mmbando that on April 7 this year at Sinza Vatican in Dar es Salaam, the accused killed Steven Kanumba. However, the accused was not allowed to enter any plea as murder cases are tried by the High Court. Magistrate Mmbando adjourned the case to April 23 this year for another mention . The accused was thus remanded in police custody.
Kanumba is said to have been embroiled in a brawl with his girlfriend Lulu at his home in Sinza on the night of his death. Muhimbili National Hospital doctors’ report showed that Kanumba died of brain injury caused by a heavy blow on the head.
According to reports from the police Lulu told them that “Kanumba fell down and hit his head on the concrete wall and passed out on the spot.” “She said the deceased just slumped to the ground and hit the concrete once they were in the bedroom,”. Kanumba had picked a quarrel with her after they had arrived home at about 1am, over a telephone call she had received a short while earlier.
A report on NigeriaFilms mentioned that, State Attorney Ms Elizabeth Kaganda, reading the charge sheet, told the court that the suspect who was known to be 18 years old is the leading suspect in the murder case, but Lulu entered a plea that she is not 18.
“Sorry your hounour I am not 18, my actual age is only 17 years old,” Lulu said after she was allowed to tell the court on what she wanted to say, Lulu who was brought to the court by a white Suzuki Grand Vitara car was calm as she stand before the Magistrate.
“Lulu claimed when he got aggressive, she attempted to run away but Kanumba caught up with her outside the gate and took her back to the bedroom. She says he collapsed as soon as he locked the door and hit the wall,”. The police took from the scene a glass and bottle of whisky which the deceased was believed to have been drinking.
Steven Charles Kanumba is a Tanzanian actor and film director. He passed away on the 7th of April at the age of 28. According to sources, over 30, 000 people attended his funeral including Tanzania’s first lady and The Vice President. He was given a state burial. He was described as Tanzania’s most popular film star who even starred in some Nollywood films. Kanumba is said to have died after he fell down in his bedroom allegedly after being pushed by his teenage girlfriend, Elizabeth “Lulu” Michael Kimemeta. Shortly before his death, he was said to be preparing for his first role in a Hollywood film.
Movie Producers urged the government to support the film industry as a way of honouring Kanumba’s contribution. Kanumba had produced 40 movies worth billions of shillings but he died poor. Movie and music stars have big names but are leading a poor life. Tanzania filmmakers pointed an accusing finger at the Copyright Society of Tanzania (COSOTA) saying that it had failed to execute its functions as many works were being pirated and counterfeited. They pressed the government to ensure that there was monitoring of artists’ works, saying some distributors and producers were benefiting from pirated works. They urged the ministry to establish strong relationship between Tanzania Revenue Authorities, COSOTA and Arts Council to ensure that all works have stickers.
Artists could be rich if the Tanzanian government and general public would fully support the industry and categorize piracy as economic sabotage.