Just when we were beginning to come to terms with the sudden death of Jozi FM DJ Mandla Hlatshwayo, rumours started spreading on how comedian and actor Alfred Ntombela died.
The news was generated by a fake news website which claims that the actor and comedian was involved in a car crash. The fake news site’s report has been making its rounds on social media, claiming that Ntombela died in a fatal car accident with pictures as proof.
The site claimed that the comedian died on May 13, 2017. The headline on the fake post read;
BREAKING NEWS: R.I.P ALFRED NTOMBELA THE FAMOUS COMEDIAN IN SA DIED TODAY ON CAR ACCIDENT
Subsequently, condolences started flooding in for Ntombela’s family when some people on Twitter saw the post. Even Police Minister Fikile Mabula became a victim when he retweeted one of the condolences that says;
“Rest in Peace Alfered Ntombela aka ‘Shorty’ who passed away in a car accident this morning. He shall be missed.”
— #NaeemForPresident (@NaeemHoosain) May 16, 2017
Several comments followed the tweet, with tributes and condolences flooding the comment section
Notwithstanding, Buzz South Africa has gathered that Ntombela, best known for his character as ‘Shorty’ in Leon Schuster’s movies, is not dead.
Apparently, the rumours were started to generate traffic to the website which can go to any length to achieve that.
To set the record straight, social cohesion activist Yusuf Abramjee has tweeted Mbalula, telling him the story was fake news.
Furthermore, talk show host Faizal Sayed also tweeted a picture of himself with the comedian and confirmed that the rumours were false.
Actor Alfred Ntombela aka "shorty" is alive and well. Rumors that he died in a car accident are false. pic.twitter.com/fLaKMjnj5C
— Lucky Light 🇿🇦 (@MadVocate_) May 17, 2017
Ntombela is not the first public figure to suffer death by social media and may not be the last either. However, it’s only rational to verify such serious issues before throwing the news around.