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Afrika Bambaataa Calls Molestation Claims “Cowardly”

UPDATE 2: Through Rolling Stone, Afrika Bambaataa himself has responded to Ronald Savages accusations. Peep it below: 

“I, Afrika Bambaataa, want to take this opportunity at the advice of my legal counsel to personally deny any and all allegations of any type of sexual molestation of anyone,” Bambaataa said. “These allegations are baseless and are a cowardly attempt to tarnish my reputation and legacy in hip-hop at this time. This negligent attack on my character will not stop me from continuing my battle and standing up against the violence in our communities, the violence in the nation and the violence worldwide.”

UPDATE: The Zulu Nation has released a press statement about Ronald Savage’s molestation accusations against Africa Bambaataa, claiming them as “outright lies.” King Kamonzi drafted a long letter denying that Bambaataa ever molested Savage and demanding an apology. Read it below: 

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Afrika Bambaataa may be a hip-hop pioneer, but he’s isn’t above reproach. Bronx judicial delegate Ronald Savage has accused the Zulu Nation founder of molesting him when he was a teenager. As a guest on Troi “Star” Torain’s Shot97 radio show a few days ago (March 29), Savage described his relationship with Bambaataa, starting back in 1977 between 12-14 years old.

“I wanted to be down with the in-crowd, not really understanding that what [Afrika] Bambaataa was doing to me was actually molesting me,” Savage explained. “I knew it was wrong. I just had these feelings that was like, ‘yuck.’ Over the years, as I was getting older, I wanted to report this. I wanted to come forward. Out of fear of the [Universal] Zulu Nation, out of fear for my family, fear for me, fear of anything that can possibly happen.”

He went into further detail about the first time he and Bambaataa allegedly made contact: ”The very first time that this ever happened to me, I was in school and I was cutting. I needed a place to go, so I called Bambaataa [to see] if I could go and hang out at his house,” Savage continued. “I had no knowledge of none of the stuff [sic] that Bam’ does. When I went over to Bam’s house, he had me go over to his room. I was watching television. That’s when Bam’ came over and he had took his penis out he had started jerking it off—masturbating. [Then] he asked me to do it. I’m looking at him like, ‘What?’ He told me that it was okay. At that time, I have this [famous] guy: Afrika Bambaataa [of] the Zulu Nation…I was confused. I really didn’t know what to do, but I wanted to be down. So I did take it out and Bam’ told me to jerk it. I didn’t know what ‘jerk it’ meant at that time. So he actually jerked it for me.”

In his memoirs Impulse Urges And Fantasies: Life Is a Bag of Mixed Emotions, Vol. 1, he doesn’t even acknowledge Bambaataa by name, instead calling him DJ Battle. Savage claims that at least four other instances like this occurred over the years and that he only told his mother after he’d turned 21 out of fear of the Zulu Nation’s influence. “I went through depression. I tried to commit suicide over this thing,” he confessed.

Savage wants to take action (“I want to be able to fight to make sure that there are no statutes of [limitations]. Because people who have not been a victim cannot say how many years it should be before you come forth.”) and Bambaataa is allegedly interested in having a sit-down with him. We’ll have more updates as they become available.

[Source: Ambrosia For Heads]

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