By Simamkele Nkinana
Manelisi Hilihili was born and bred in a small village named Ngcoya location, in Lusikisiki, he was born on the 28th of May 1996; in Eastern Cape. He is known by many as Manez, a qualified Public Relations practitioner and a radio presenter. He hopes one day he will own his own Communication Company.
Manelisi ‘Manez’ Hilihili shares his journey and struggles that he overcame during his journey to becoming a radio sport presenter that he is today.
In 2011 Manelisi moved from Lusikisiki to Port Alfred, there he attended high school at Nomzamo Secondary school. After graduating from high school he took a gap year and worked as a seasonal employee at a retail store.
He applied for a journalism course at Rhodes University and Nelson Mandela University unfortunately his applications were rejected. After the rejection he took a part time job at a construction company, he then applied at Walter Sisulu University (WUS) were his application was accepted, he was accepted for his second option course Public relations which he fell in love with, he ended up finishing his Public Relations course, now he is a two time WUS graduate, he holds a National Diploma in Public Relations and Advanced Diploma in Public Relations.
“I joined Kumkani FM sorely to explore radio in general and to polish my skills as a sports anchor. Growing up in Lusikisiki with radio as the only medium of communication I always wondered what radio is and how the whole production process works and Kumkani FM was the best platform for me to explore that and beyond”, said Manez.
Manelisi said that “In 2019 March I joined Kumkani FM as a sport analyst on hustlers drive 3-6pm week days, it moved from there; the chairperson fell in love with my isiXhosa analysis as a person from Lusikisiki my isiXhosa is good, the chairman suggested that I become a sport presenter, I grabbed the opportunity and went with it from there I became a co-host sport presenter then became a program manager and now in 2021 it’s my 3rd year at Kumkani FM.”
His sports show “Number 1 sports” hits the airways every Friday from 19:00-21:00, and features sports professionals to give in-depth commentary and brings current and exciting sports news ranging from football, boxing, swimming and other sport codes. Manelisi has had the opportunity to interview the likes of George Maluleka, Zolani Tete, Pastor Hawk Makepula to name a few.