South African media mogul Tbo Touch hit back at those who criticised him for what he said at Kobe Bryant’s memorial

The radio presenter was trolled for paying his respects to the late basketball legend, for others.

When Tbo Touch took it upon himself to speak on behalf of Kobe’s South African fanbase, the people of Mzansi hit back by claiming that they had not asked Tbo Touch to represent them.

After learning of Kobe’s death at the end of January, Touch (who was already in Los Angeles) decided to take a moment to visit Kobe’s Memorial at the Staples Centre.

Tbo took a picture at the memorial before writing on Instagram, “On behalf of your friends and family from SA, RIP Kobe and Gigi”.

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On behalf of all your fans & family from 🇿🇦#RestinpeaceKobeandgigi 🖤

A post shared by Tbo Touch (@iamtbotouch) on

The post sparked widespread backlash from Mzansi where people questioned who Tbo Touch was representing

Others accused him of using the moment to seek attention from local and international followers alike.

Speaking to TshisaLive this week, Tbo Touch hit back at his haters, suggesting that his gesture was bigger than the opinions of the people who were hating on him. Instead, the Touch HD founder explained why he felt compelled to pay his respects to Kobe, “Kobe Bryant is more than basketball to me, he’s the epitome of excellence and a very present father. I look up to him.”.

Tbo added that he interviewed the Lakers legend back in 2010 when Kobe visited Mzansi for the world cup.

He said, “He visited Soweto during the World Cup, I interviewed him on my radio show and if there was ever a time to thank the Bryant family for giving us the Mamba King it could only be now!”

This isn’t the first time such a move has rubbed Mzansi up the wrong way. DJ Sbu faced similar backlash after the death of American rapper Nipsey Hussle

Sbu, who was in LA at the time, visited Nipsey’s memorial and claimed to be representing Africa in sending his condolences. Similarly to Tbo Touch, many Africans questioned who had asked him to represent them.

Do you think that there’s anything wrong with celebrities representing the country unasked, during memorials such as these?