Businessman Phillip Chiyangwa’s daughter, Vannessa, is courting trouble by selling sex toys and holding peep shows.
BY SILENCE CHARUMBIRA
The board of censors last week said no one in Zimbabwe had ever approached them seeking clearance to sell sex toys, meaning that her business was illegal under Censorship and Entertainment Control Act of 1967 that was revised in 1996.
Vannessa has been holding peep shows where she auctions various sex toys and lingerie in Harare. The auctions have been criticised as immoral.
Secretary to the Censorship Board, Isaac Chiranganyika told Standardlife&style that they had not cleared anyone in Zimbabwe to sell sex toys or to hold auctions or any activities that promoted sexual activities.
That meant anyone engaging in the trade was doing so illegally, he said.
“Anyone who wants to do that business should first bring them [toys] to our offices for approval but we have not had anyone doing that,” said Chiranganyika.
“We are aware some people are smuggling the toys through various entry points and a number of them have been caught. Their cases have been dealt with at the magistrates courts,” he said.
Chiranganyika disclosed that most of the culprits were foreigners coming to attend the Harare International Festival of the Arts (Hifa).
“It is during festivals like Hifa that we normally record the highest number of sex toys brought in but we confiscate them,” said Chiranganyika.
The board keeps different types of vibrators/dildos impounded over the past two years.
Most of the toys in their possession are for use by women while artificial female organs are also part of the goods.
Asked whether she had sought clearance from the censorship board, Vannessa said; “As a club operates, there is no censorship as I don’t expect minors to attend my shows and I don’t allow anyone under 21 to attend.”
About the legality of her trade, she said: “It’s just like you asking me, are condoms illegal! Sex toys just like condoms, are merchandise that facilitates pleasure and sex, so do lubricants which are sold in pharmacies in Zimbabwe.
“Carex is now introducing a vibrating condom, is that classified as an illegal toy and how did they get clearance?” she quipped.
‘I am not a pimp, I don’t sell sex’
Vannessa Chiyangwa (VC), daughter to businessman Phillip Chiyangwa has raised eyebrows by holding auctions for sex toys in Harare. The Censorship board says such auctions are illegal.
Our reporter, Silence Charumbira (SC) got in touch with the sassy young lady who also hosts peep shows to get an appreciation of her motives and nature of the business which is being held in a largely conservative society. Below are excerpts from the interview.
SC: How is the response to your auctions and what kind of clients do you attract?
VC: Granted, our society is a conservative one and people shy away from conversations that are to do with intimacy, we have been pleasantly surprised by the turnout and response. Women out there are very sexually active. And if you attend the shows and just exploit the idea that peep is here to help you maintain your sex life with your partner safely and to just enjoy it, then a certain group of people will think differently. The clients I’ve attracted are in different categories; couples who are open-minded about going the extra mile to ensure that their unions are kept sacred, the married women and men [who come] separately and single women and men who all want to spice up their sex lives and enjoy each other by placing their inhibitions aside to please the other’s needs.
SC: Is the event open to the public and how often is it held?
VC: Yes, the event is open to the public. Intimacy is not for a particular group, hence we are accessible to a varied target market. The different platforms we use to market these shows are testament to that. I often post upcoming events on my Facebook page Vannessa Chiyangwa Chironga/ Peep Collection and to my WhatsApp contacts. It is held once every month, now at Vukani Cafe in Belgravia opposite the service station near Reps Theatre.
SC: What other activities are involved?
VC: We have a variety of activities apart from the auction. We also have models that showcase our latest lingerie ranges. These are not limited to only slim models but we also have fuller figured women, which also says to the fuller figured girls, ‘you are still sexy and YES we have merchandise for you’. The models always have a set of three performances for that night, either choreographed and or improvised as it depends on the crowd at times. The first act encompasses the girls’ first showcase of the lingerie and the second a choreographed sensual skit of the bondage theme using handcuffs, blindfold, whip, gag and leash performed by a male and female. And more! if I tell you everything that happens you won’t come to our next show.
SC: How much do your activities affect you morally considering the reserved nature of Zimbabweans?
VC: Reproduction is as a result of intimacy and sex, and even in this reserved nature of Zimbabweans, when someone breaks the news that they are pregnant we celebrate. I design trendy baby bags too LGS bags found in 9 months later at Westgate and 33 Bath Road, Avondale. Being that I exercise the idea that God invented sex, my morals are not based on a culturally bound society, but one that helps people express their innate sexual nature. I am not in any way affected morally by selling merchandise that enhances this process, which is why we do shows at bridal showers and bachelorettes because we want to equip women with tools that will help them satisfy their men sexually. And that is not immoral. [It is a business] where people can feel safe and confident enough to talk about sex without it being a faux pas. As they say, “Nothing ventured, nothing gained”
SC: How much do you make on average per single auction?
VC: That information is privileged to us as a growing business.
SC: There has been talk that you auction young girls; can you clarify on that. Is there some sort of pimping going on and what do the girls get from it?
VC: I need to be clear about something. I’m not a Madame! I don’t sell sex. I don’t have anything to do with selling sex, only the products!
SC: How do you select the models?
VC: I select models through my Facebook page, Peep site and women just approaching me who want to exploit their sexuality in a way that makes them feel sexy and liberated. They get to have their hair done, get to be made over and also get paid for their services as Peep Models.
SC: Are sex toys legal in Zimbabwe?
VC: Are sex toys illegal? It’s just like you asking me, are condoms illegal! Sex toys, just like condoms, are merchandise that facilitate pleasure and sex, so do lubricants which are sold in pharmacies in Zimbabwe. Carex is now introducing a vibrating condom, is that classified as an illegal toy and how did they get clearance?
SC: How do you import them, and do you get some kind of clearance from the Censorship Board for your activities?
VC: You need to clarify your question. But as the club operates there is no censorship as I don’t expect minors to attend my shows and don’t allow anyone under 21 to attend and those restrictions are clear on the tickets for every show. We have bouncers and appropriate members to make sure of that.