Rags-to-riches polygamist scores own reality TV show

Businessman and polygamist Lucky Gumbi and his two wives who will appear in the new reality show The Gumbis starting in next month

KWAZULU NATAL. — KZN mining magnate and polygamist Lucky Gumbi, who shocked social media when he paid R260 000 for his wife’s bridal shower in 2018, has finally scored his own reality TV show called The Gumbis.

Gumbi, who is also in coal transportation and construction businesses, went on to marry his second wife in a glamorous wedding ceremony that cost R4m in December 2018. His reality show to be flighted on SABC1 next month follows the polygamist and his two wives, Bayede Cebekhulu Gumbi, 30, and Nombuso Malinga Gumbi, 24, as they strive to maintain unique family values, personal identity, their lives as businesswomen and living the life.

The businessman said after trending on social media the interest to document his stories grew big with different filmmakers chasing his signature. The 38-year-old who described himself as a private person said it was difficult to agree to the reality show but he finally gave SABC1 the green light last year. The soft-spoken businessman said he agreed to do the show because he wanted to inspire others.

“Through this show I want to show people that your background should not determine your future. My father died when I was young and as a result we struggled a lot growing up. My mother struggled to take care of us but she did her best and I took a decision that I will change the family situation.

“At some point even other family members did not believe that our situation will change the way we struggled. There were days that we slept on empty stomachs. Having struggled when I was growing up has pricked an interest to help others and that is what people are going to see in the show. What makes things difficult is that the filming of the show started during the lockdown.”


Though he owns a house in Richards Bay and in Balito, 40km north of Durban, Gumbi said the show was not about flashing his wealth, it was about what has made him and how he made it work with his wives. Unlike many men in polygamous marriages who venture into it because they want many children, Gumbi said for him it was not the case.

“I’m not obsessed with having many kids, the four that I have so far are OK. I want to be able to give my kids everything they want and all the love. When it comes to isithembu [polygamy], I love it because the women assist me in running the business and also expand our empire as the Gumbis.”

Though he was not sure about the number of women he wanted to marry, he said he was happy for now. He said all his wives knew before marrying him about his keenness for having multiple wives. Born in Jozini near the Swaziland border, Gumbi grew up in Mtubatuba on the far north coast of KZN, Gumbi said that for polygamous marriage to work honesty, especially from men’s side, was crucial.— Sowetan