Most of the cast of the very popular Yizo Yizo have gone on to have successful acting careers since the show, which ran for three seasons, ended in 2004. While some of the Yizo Yizo actors have died, many others are still active in the film industry.
On January 27th, 1999, Yizo Yizo premiered on SABC1 and followed the story of teachers and students at a troubled high school grappling with anarchy, corruption, and violence. In April 2023, Yizo Yizo was launched on Netflix, and the first two seasons were made available for streaming at the time. The hit series had several cast members who, over time, have become A-list actors in Mzansi.
Cast of Yizo Yizo
- Mavuso Magabane as Javas
- Tshepo Ngwane as Thiza
- Charmaine Mtinta as Nomsa
- Nothemba Sulupha as Nomsa
- Sma Mathibeli as Nomsa
- Patrick Shai as Edwin Thapelo
- Nomonde Gongxeka as Hazel
- Thembi Seete as Hazel
- Innocent Masuku as Bobo
- Nambitha Mpumlwana as Grace Letsatsi
- Sthandiwe Kgoroge as Zoe Cele
- Christopher Kubheka as Gunman
- Dumisane Khumalo as Sticks
- Ernest Msibi as Chester
- Dumisani Dlamini as Chester
- Sandy Mokwena as Ken Mokoena
- Mmabatho Mogomotsi as Snowey
- Lorraine Mphephi as Mantwa
- Themsie Times as Ma Jordan
- Patrick Ndlovu as Mr. Mthembu
- Sophie Ndaba as Louisa Tlaila
- Fana Mokoena as Thulas
- Mary Twala as Alice
- Menzi Ngubane as Elliot
- Bubu Mazibuko as Minky
- Mary Makhatho as Councillor
- Jerry Mofokeng as Prosecutor
- DJ Sbu as Dog
- Vusi Kunene as Vuyani
- Lerato Zah Moloi as Vanessa
- Israel Matseke Zulu as Boyza
- Sonia Mbele as Zake’s Girlfriend
- Jet Novuka as Zakes
What are Yizo Yizo Cast Members Doing Now?
1. Charmaine Mtinta
- Date of Birth: July 20th, 1972
- Age: 51 years old
- Role: Nomsa
For her role as Nomsa in the first season of Yizo Yizo, Charmaine Mtinta won the Avanti Award for Best Actress in a Drama Series. In 2011, she appeared in the series Gauteng Maboneng and played Aunt Lizzie in Inkaba from 2012 to 2013. Mtinta further had a recurring role in The River in 2021.
2. Nothemba Sulupha
- Year of Birth: 1982
- Age: 41 years old
- Role: Nomsa
Nothembu Sulupha replaced Charmaine Mtinta as Nomsa in the second season of Yizo Yizo. She afterward had the role of Junior School Principal in season two of Saints and Sinners and also played Maureen in the twelfth season of Soul City. She was additionally cast in the first season of Rhythm City as well as in Hola Mpinji season one.
In November 2013, Sulupha was allegedly convicted of fraud and theft. However, in the following year, she began working as a media and communications liaison officer for the African National Congress caucus.
3. Sma Mathibeli
- Date of Birth: May 1982
- Age: 41 years old
- Role: Nomsa
Sma Mathibeli took up the role of Nomsa in the third season of Yizo Yizo, and for her outstanding performance, she received a Special Mention at the Venice Film Festival’s Human Rights Film Network Awards. She joined Scandal as Nomcebo in 2012 and has since ventured into business. Alongside her husband, Calvin Mathibeli, Sma owns Calvin and Family Group, which specializes in hospitality, construction, and marketing.
She also owns a restaurant called Unique Lifestyle Cafe and works as a content producer for some Ukhozi FM’s shows.
4. Patrick Shai
- Date of Birth: December 5th, 1956
- Died: January 22nd, 2022
- Role: Edwin Thapelo
South African actor Patrick Shai joined the cast of Yizo Yizo as Edwin Thapelo in season one and only appeared in the season. Nonetheless, the role made him famous in Mzansi. After Yizo Yizo ended in 2004, Shai had the role of a Xhosa doctor in the SABC2 miniseries Noah’s Ark in 2008. He also played Kgosi Matlakala in the sitcom Moferefere Lenyalong.
Tragically, on Saturday, January 22nd, 2022, the talented actor took his own life at his home in Dobosnville, Soweto. Patrick Shai was widely known for his roles in numerous TV series, stage productions, and feature films.
5. Sthandiwe Kgoroge
- Date of Birth: February 4th, 1972
- Age: 51 years old
- Role: Zoe Cele
In 1999, Sthandiwe Kgoroge joined Yizo Yizo’s first season as Zoe Cele, and her performance landed her the Avanti Award for Best Supporting Actress in a Drama Series. Later, in 2011, she starred in Fallen and had a starring role in The Road in 2015. She played Aunty Nora in the third season of The Estate in 2022. Kgoroge is married to Tony Kgoroge, a South African actor and producer.
6. Nambitha Mpumlwana
- Date of Birth: February 12th, 1967
- Age: 56 years old
- Role: Grace Letsatsi
Supatsela High School principal Grace Letsatsi was played by Nambitha Mpumlwana in seasons one and two of Yizo Yizo. She succeeded Ken Mokoena, who was corrupt and weak. In 2005, the actress was cast in the Oscar-winning South African film Totsi. She returned to her role in 7de Laan in 2009 and featured in Ashes to Ashes from 2015 to 2016.
7. Christopher Kubheka
- Date of Birth: 1969
- Died: June 12th, 2017
- Role: Gunman
Christopher Kubheka rose to fame for playing the lead role of Gunman in the three seasons of Yizo Yizo. Sadly, the actor was found dead at his residence in Soshanguve, Pretoria, in June 2017. He is believed to have committed suicide at his house as his wife, Cynthia Khumalo, discovered his lifeless body hanging on the burglar door when she returned from work around 4:30.
Prior to his death, Kubheka scored the role of Bazooka in the SABC1 drama series Zone 14. He also ventured into music and released hit songs such as ‘GunChes’, which he released in collaboration with former Yizo Yizo star Ernest Msibi. The late actor was survived by his wife, Cynthia Khumalo, and his alleged 24 children.
8. Sandy Mokwena
- Date of Birth: July 26th, 1949
- Died: January 24th, 2018
- Role: Ken Mokoena
South African actor Sandy Mokwena was announced dead on Wednesday, January 24th, 2018. He died of natural causes at the age of 68. In Yizo Yizo, Mokwena scored the role of Ken Mokoena – a weak and corrupt school principal who allowed the school to be taken over by gangs. However, he was best known for portraying the character of Bra Eddie Khumalo in the e.tv soapie Scandal.
Also, Sandy had roles in numerous TV commercials and was associated with top brands, which included MTN, Kelvinator, Edblo, and Borstol.
9. Mmabatho Mogomotsi
- Date of Birth: October 19th, 1983
- Age: 40 years old
- Role: Snowey
Although Mmabatho Mogomotsi portrayed the character of Snowey in the three seasons of Yizo Yizo, she became famously known for playing Harriet Khanyi in the medical drama series Hillside from 2006 to 2008. She replaced Connie Chiume in the second season of 90 Plein Street in 2009, playing the role of The Speaker. She also had roles in Rhythm City, The River, Ashes to Ashes, and Gomora.
10. Lorraine Mphephi
- Date of Birth: Not known
- Age: Not Known
- Role: Mantwa
South African actress Lorraine Mphephi had a starring role as Mantwa in Yizo Yizo‘s three seasons. She later played a recurring role as Pam in the Mzansi Magic telenovela turned soapie Isibaya. She also made guest appearances in several other TV series, including Umlilo, Tshisa, Home Affairs, Mtunzini.com, Zero Tolerance, Soul Buddyz, and Single Guyz.
11. Themsie Times
- Date of Birth: September 22nd, 1949
- Died: December 9th, 2021
- Role: Ma Jordan
Themsie Times was cast as Ma Jordan in the first season of Yizo Yizo. She then increased her height of fame with her depictions in 7de Laan, where she played the role of Maria Zibula. She also had a recurring role in the second season of Isithembiso and equally featured as a nurse in the two seasons of the e.tv drama series Madam & Eve.
Sadly, Themsie Times passed away on December 9th, 2021, at the age of 72, and her cause of death was not disclosed to the public.
12. Patrick Ndlovu
- Date of Birth: November 15th, 1938
- Died: May 30th, 2023
- Role: Mr. Mthmebu
In the first season of Yizo Yizo, Patrick Ndlovu stole the hearts of TV lovers with his portrayal of a dictatorial school principal, Mr. Mthembu. He was asked to leave the school after physically assaulting a pupil. Ndlovu further cemented his status as an A-list actor with his role as Sizwe Moloi in the SABC1 series Zone 14. Sadly, he died on May 30, 2023, aged 84, and his death was announced by his agency, Moonyeenn Lee Associates (MLA SA).
He died of natural causes and was survived by his wife, Kellina Sonto Ndlovu, and daughter, Nomvuyo Ndlovu. The late actor also had two daughters from his previous relationships.
13. Sophie Ndaba
- Date of Birth: 1972
- Age: 51 years old
- Role: Loisa Tlaila
South African actress Sophie Ndaba was offered a supporting role as Loisa Tlaila in the first season of Yizo Yizo. She is now best known for her portrayal of Queen Moroka in the SABC1 series Generations. Between 2015 and 2016, she played Harriet in High Rollers and subsequently featured in Isidingo, Family Secrets, and House of Zwide.
14. Fana Mokoena
- Date of Birth: May 13th, 1971
- Age: 52 years old
- Role: Thulas
In Yizo Yizo‘s first season in 1999, South African actor and politician Fana Mokoena had the role of Thulas. He then moved on to feature in Hotel Rwanda in 2004 and also played Jaws Bengu in The LAB from 2006 to 2009. He subsequently had roles in Hollywood films Safe House (2012) and World War Z (2013).
He first served in the parliament as a delegate to the National Council of Provinces from 2014 to 2016. Mokoena then became a full member of the National Assembly from 2016 to 2020. He returned to acting in 2021 when he debuted as Vukile Kubheka in Scandal.
15. Mary Twala
- Date of Birth: September 14th, 1939
- Died: July 4th, 2020
- Role: Alice
Mary Twala was a renowned South African actress who had a decades-long career in acting. She passed away on July 4th, 2020, aged 80 years. She was the mother of media personality and reality TV star Somizi Mhlongo. Twala played the role of Alice in the second season of Yizo Yizo.
For her extensive contributions to performing arts, she was honored with the Order of Ikhamanga in Silver from the South African Presidency. She also won numerous awards, including the Best Comedy Performer Award.
16. Menzi Ngubane
- Date of Birth: September 4th, 1964
- Died: March 13th, 2021
- Role: Elliot
After a prolonged battle with diabetes and kidney disease, Menzi Ngubane died of stroke complications in his home on March 13, 2021, at the age of 56. In Yizo Yizo, he portrayed the character of Elliot, a charismatic teacher who made sexual advances towards students. Besides Yizo Yizo, Ngubane had roles in Generations, Gaz’lam, Ashes to Ashes, Isibaya, The Queen, and Gold Diggers.
17. Bubu Mazibuko
- Date of Birth: December 13th, 1975
- Age: 47 years old
- Role: Minky
South African actress and casting director Bubu Mazibuko played Minky in Yizo Yizo in the second and third seasons. She is widely recognized for her starring role as Thuli in Gaz’lam from 2002 to 2005, for which she was nominated for SAFTA Award for Best Actress. In 2013, she was featured in My Zulu Promise and later in its continuation, Zulu Wedding in 2017. Bubu worked as the casting director for Gaz’lam in 2005 and uGugu no Andile in 2008.
18. Mary Makhatho
- Date of Birth: August 10th, 1965
- Died: August 7th, 2017
- Role: Councillor
Mary Makhatho joined the cast of Yizo Yizo as Councillor in season three. She is best known for her roles as Thandi in the 2005 film Duma and Esther Mamoruti Tlhong in the SABC2 series Ga Re Dumele. In July 2015, Makhatho had a serious fall and sustained life-threatening injuries. Unfortunately, she couldn’t survive the injuries as she passed away on August 7th, 2017, aged 51.
19. Jerry Mofokeng
- Date of Birth: April 17th, 1956
- Age: 67 years old
- Role: Prosecutor
In the second season of Yizo Yizo, legendary South African actor Jerry Mofokeng appeared as a prosecutor. In 2006, he featured in the mini-series When We Were Black and The Mating Game in 2010. He joined Scandal in 2013 and also had a role in Let Heaven Wait. Subsequently, Mofokeng was cast in Isidingo, Heist, and End Game.
20. DJ Sbu
- Date of Birth: May 28th, 1979
- Age: 44 years old
- Role: Dog
DJ Sbu featured in season three of Yizo Yizo as Dog. During such time, he landed the role of presenter of the SABC1 game show Friends Like These and hosted it from 2003 to 2016. He also presented other shows such as Beauty and the Beast and Gumba Fire. The radio DJ co-owns a record company called TS Records.
21. Vusi Kunene
- Date of Birth: April 12th, 1966
- Age: 57 years old
- Role: Vuyani
South African actor Vusi Kunene joined Yizo Yizo cast as Vuyani in the second season. Recently, he is best known for his leading role as Funani Zwide in the e.tv drama series House of Zwide. He also appears in Gomora, having debuted on the show as Bab’Dube in season three in 2022. Kunene has further scored roles in The Wife, Lingashoni, The River, and Family Secrets.
22. Lerato Zah Moloi
- Date of Birth: January 13th, 1985
- Age: 38 years old
- Role: Vanessa
Lerato Zah Moloi debuted as Vanessa in Yizo Yizo‘s third season. Afterward, she scored the role of Refiloe in Muvhango and guest-starred in Mtunzini.com in 2008. She was cast in the second season of Rockville in 2014 and equally in Thola. She joined the Mzansi Magic soapie, The Throne, in 2018 and played the starring role of Kefilwe.
Lerato also hosted Gospel Gold and has reportedly been the face of Black Like Me hair products.
23. Israel Matseke Zulu
- Date of Birth: December 28th, 1974
- Age: 48 years old
- Role: Boyza
Israel Matseke Zulu, a South African actor, singer, and dancer, played the role of Boyza in season two of Yizo Yizo. From 2002 to 2005, he had the role of GP in Gaz’lam. Later, in 2015, he bagged a starring role in the e.tv series Z’bondiwe, which debuted in Isibaya the next year. Israel also works as the director for Ishoshovi, an Alexandra-based theatre group.
24. Sonia Mbele
- Date of Birth: December 11th, 1976
- Age: 46 years old
- Role: Zake’s Girlfriend
Sonia Mbele only featured in season one of Yizo Yizo as Zake’s Girlfriend. She subsequently had her breakout role as Ntombi Khumalo in Generations (2003-2011). She also scored roles in Soul City, Muvhango, and Phamokate. In the third season of Blood and Water in late 2022, Mbele was cast as Lisbeth Molapo. She served as a judge in the Miss South Africa pageant season 56.
25. Jet Novuka
- Date of Birth: March 3rd, 1971
- Age: 52 years old
- Role: Zakes
In addition to playing Zakes in the three seasons of Yizo Yizo, Jet Novuka portrayed Andile Makhubu in the M-Net series Jacob’s Cross for five seasons. He joined the cast of Isidingo in April 2014 and also scored a starring role in Mflozi Street the same year. He played Detective Mpambani in the sixth and seventh seasons of Uzalo (2020-2022).
Where is Chester from Yizo Yizo?
In the first season of Yizo Yizo, Chester Serote was played by Ernest Msibi. The role, however, was later given to Dumisani Dlamini in the second season of the series. In recent years, Ernest Msibi has scored roles in Uzalo, eHostela, and Gomora. He is also into business and partners with his wife when he is not busy on set.
On the other hand, Dumisani Dlamini, who is the father of music sensation Doja Cat, works as a composer and film producer in addition to acting. He featured as Dlakadla in the first season of The Wife and further had roles in eHostela, Isibaya, Muvhango, Durban Gen, Uzalo, and Shaka iLembe.
Where is Thiza from Yizo Yizo?
Tshepo Ngwane, who portrayed the character of Thiza – the much-loved shy pupil in the teen drama series, passed away at the Bheki Mlangeni Hospital in Soweto on October 27th, 2015. He reportedly died of a stomach ulcer after being hospitalized for two weeks. He was 39 years old.
His burial was held at Makhaya Hall in Zondi, Soweto, in November 2015. The funeral was organized on donations from people in government and the entertainment industry. The Department of Arts and Culture donated transport, tents, and chairs. Ngwane’s funeral service was attended by some of his Yizo Yizo co-stars, including Patrick Shai, Ronnie Nyakele, and Thembi Seete.
In addition to Yizo Yizo, Ngwane was known for playing the role of Mdu Sibiya in Zone 14 and for serving as the host of the reality show RiZe Mzansi on SABC1.
Where is Hazel from Yizo Yizo?
Former South African actress Nomonde Gongxeka played the role of Hazel in the first season of Yizo Yizo. She, however, abandoned acting to launch a corporate career. She worked as a counselor at the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa). Furthermore, Nomonde had a behind-the-scenes role in Soul City, and from 2008 to 2013, she worked as SABC1’s head of programming before becoming the public broadcaster’s fundraiser.
Then, in seasons two and three of Yizo Yizo, Thembi Seete took up the role of Hazel. After the show ended, she played the leading role of Nina Moloi in Zone 14 in 2005. She served as the host of Jika Majika from 2006 to 2012. She was also one of the seven choirmasters for the reality competition Clash of the Choirs South Africa in 2013.
Later, in 2015, Thembi Seete debuted as Bongi in the e.tv soap opera Rhythm City. She also played Keneilwe Masire in the first and second seasons of Kings of Jo’burg. Since March 2020, the talented actress has become very popular for her role as Gladys in the Mzansi Magic series, Gomora.
Where is Bobo from Yizo Yizo?
After Yizo Yizo ended, Innocent Masuku, who portrayed Bobo – a high school drug addict in the series, joined the cast of Zone 14 as Maradona in 2005. The following year, he bagged the role of Baksteen in the SABC1 series, Tshisa and featured on the show from 2006 to 2012. He worked alongside his co-star, Bongani Masondo, to perform Tshisa‘s title track. He additionally made a guest appearance in the second season of Mtunzini.com.
For several years, Innocent Masuku battled with drug addiction. He went from playing a drug addict in Yizo Yizo to becoming one in real life. As a result, he lost about R5 million, which included his house, cars, and opportunities. He is now grateful to Mzansi, especially the EFF, Zodwa Zuma, Thami Madondo, and Podcast and Chill with MacG for the support shown to him throughout his rehabilitation journey.
He would reportedly make a comeback to the small screen after successfully undergoing rehab and rebuilding his life.
Where is Dudu from Yizo Yizo?
Like many characters in Yizo Yizo, Dudu was played by two actors. Noluthando Maleka debuted as Dudu in season one of the drama series, and then Lindiwe Mbundu replaced her in the second season. Noluthundo left acting to begin a corporate career and has worked as a lead sales recruiter for Dell South Africa.
Lindiwe Mbundu, on the other hand, had the role of Zinzi in the second and third seasons of Home Affairs before disappearing from the small screen.
Where Is Sticks from Yizo Yizo Now?
From 1999 to 2004, Dumisane Khumalo played the role of Sicks in the three seasons of Yizo Yizo. He also landed a role in the SABC1 soccer drama series Zone 14. He, however, failed to bag another acting role afterward and so disappeared from the limelight. Dumisane seemed to have veered into another career path as he is rumored to be presently working as a traffic officer.
Where Is Papa Action from Yizo Yizo?
In Yizo Yizo‘s first season, Ronnie Nyakele played the role of Papa Action. After scoring an award-winning gangster role in the drama series, Nyakele moved on to portray another beloved gangster, Cosmo Diale, in Generations, as well as Ding-Dong in Rhythm City. He further featured in eKasi: Our Stories, A Place Called Home, and Naledi.
Nyakele was replaced by actor cum musician, Zola7 as Papa Action in the second season of Yizo Yizo. Zola later went on hiatus, and after his appearance in Ayeye in 2015, he began hosting radio and TV shows. In 2011, he featured in his own docu-reality series titled Rolling with Zola, and in 2015, he worked as the host of the Mzansi Magic docu-reality series Utatakho before getting replaced by Phumeza Mdabe.
Where Is Javas from Yizo Yizo?
Mavuso Magabane rose to fame in the late 90s following his lead role as Jabulani “Javas” Nyembe in Yizo Yizo. He featured in the three seasons of the series and has gone on to build a blossoming acting career. Over the years, he has impressed his fans with his roles as Vusi Moletsane in SABC3’s Isidingo, Keromemang Mtimande in Isithembiso, and Nsizwa in The River.
After his contract with Isidingo expired, Magabane joined the cast of the e.tv drama series Heist as Chairperson in the year 2016. He also had the role of Dr. Thabo Dlamini, the head of surgery in Durban Gen. Also, from 2021 to 2022, Magabane was featured as a Station Commander in the seventh and eighth seasons of Uzalo.