Afrika Bambaata has been fired by the Universal Zulu Nation, an international self-help, Hip Hop-awareness group he founded in the 1970’s and led, as charges continue to mount that he sexually molested young boys.
Bambaata’s removal was announced Friday during an organizational shakeup as more men have come forward, alleging Bambaata molested them when they were pre-teens or teenagers.
The news release, however, did not mention his name or the names of others who were forced out of the organization or who had stepped down from their current positions but remain employed by Universal Zulu Nation. Rolling Stone magazine reported that Bambaataa, a D.J., has not been part of the organization’s leadership for years.
“As part of this restructuring ALL accused parties and those accused of covering up the current allegations of child molestation have been removed or have stepped down from their current positions,” Universal Zulu Nation said in an unsigned statement. “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. We have a duty to search for truth.”
While the organization sorts this out, Universal Zulu Nation extended its sympathy to anyone who has been affected by the alleged behaviors.
The restructuring is the first step the organization is taking to address the accusations of child molestation and sexual abuse.
“There shall also be a new move to work towards providing support for victims of abuse, rape and molestation and towards working more closely on other social issues existing in communities such as drug addiction, alcoholism and mental health,” the organization said.
Men come forward
Hassan Campbell told the New York Daily that Bambaata repeatedly sexually abused him when he was 12 and 13. Campbell, a former New York Democratic committee member, called Bambaata a ‘pervert’ who likes ‘little boys.’
Three other men, whose names have been withheld, also have come forward. And a former Bambaata bodyguard said his former boss abused ‘hundreds’ of young boys since the early 70’s. Bambaata denied the allegations.
Universal Zulu Nation initially denied the allegations but as charges mounted, the organization changed its tune.
Since the early 1980s, the Zulu Nation has established autonomous branches in Japan, France, the UK, Australia, Canada, South Korea and the Cape Flats in Cape Town South Africa.