FORMER geek iFani, who swapped a career in computer engineering for one as a rapper, tells Moyagabo Maake how much he spends on his Afro — and the trip that burnt all his money
Are you good with money or irresponsible?
No, I’m bad with money. That’s why I have a helping hand when it comes to using money wisely.
How much do you spend on your vintage sunglasses and hair food for that impressive Afro?
I spend R600 a month on my hair. In a hectic month with video shoots and TV interviews, it may go up to R1000. I’m not allowed to spend more than that a month. Vintage glasses are quite cheap because the demand — fortunately for me — is low in the places I visit. The most I’ve paid so far was R350.
What did your childhood teach you about money?
It taught me that I can look and smell better with money, but it doesn’t affect how I feel inside. That depends on me and not money.
What was your first job and how much did you earn?
Paperboy. I delivered The Herald daily in Port Elizabeth to upmarket stores and made R50 a month. I was rich! I was 14!
Does life as a music artist pay better than your first job ?
Yah, I make more than R50 a month now.
What do you think is the biggest misconception people have about famous people’s finances?
They think they are rich. Some of them are, but, ahem … most are unfortunately faking it until they make it. And as for me — if you think I’m famous, that is — I’m still far from rich, but much further from broke. Thank you, Lord! Enkosi Bawo!
Do you have any investments or own any savings products?
Yah, I have small investments. A few of my investments went south because I like to take BIG risks and those come at a BIG price, but, hey … I’m still working my way up.
Do you own your own home?
Um, no. I have a house I rent out to a couple who … eish, don’t get me started about tenants. Headache!
Have you ever bought something that you regretted afterwards?
Yes, I used to buy everything I never needed. I’m much better now. My accountant thinks I’m still bad but I think I’ve improved. No, wait — I did buy a drink for a fine lady that I later regretted. Eish, what a waste of money!
How do you rate cars — in terms of practicality, speed or looks?
Power first, looks second and, lastly, gadgets. But at this point in my life cars don’t interest me. Being hijacked perhaps has made me think about cars differently.
How do you prefer to pay for purchases — cash, credit or card?
Credit card always. You swipe for free and interest-free for up to 60 days. Nothing’s better than using someone else’s money for free! As long as you pay it back ON time.
What was your biggest extravagance?
My trip to the US. Phew, I got blinded by the New York lights and blew money with the Chicago wind while swimming in guap/dough/stacks in New Orleans. When I got back to Mzansi, I almost cried. Just thinking about it makes me wanna cry. I need a hug!
If you won R1bn, what would you do?
First, I’d buy a boat and a Lamborghini, just to scratch them off my list. Then I would open a school, a high school in Port Elizabeth, and teach kids maths, physics and philosophy. Our extramural activity would be music.
• This article was first published in Sunday Times: Money Careers