Amida Shatur: The woman who floors Congo's richest men

Lifestyle
Amida Shatur: The woman who floors Congo's richest men
Amida Shatur

Amida Shatur, 48, is a mother of five, including three children with celebrated Ndombolo star Jean Bedel Mpiana, and one each with Kinshasa's magnates Didace Kinuani and Vital Kamerhe

SOCIETY | A Congolese magazine once said of Amida Shatur: "A beauty with a powerful aura that has sparked intrigue and fascination for almost two decades".

Like morning dew on a tender leaf, Amida's beauty could defy Zarinah Ntale's, and floor every man alive.

And she has floored them big. Soukous great Jean Bedel Tshituka, alias JB Mpiana, diamond mogul Didace 'Didi' Kinuani, and political 'Kamerhéon' Vital Kamerhe have led a long string of men who have professed, "I can drink her bathwater" about Amida.

Maurice Nguesso, a brother of Congo Brazzaville president Denis Sassou Nguesso, was in such a trance, once buying Amida a plush house where he sought to keep her and 'partake in drinking her bathwater'.

Born Hamida Chatur on November 6, 1976, in Kinshasa, she kept the H out of her first name and quietly accepted Shatur for Chatur.

The daughter of a man of Indian origin, Shabudin Chatur, and Élisabeth Ndenge Vangu, a Mayombe ethnic, left her home town of Seke-Banza in Kongo-Central for Kinshasa in 1996.

Amida Shatur with JB Mpiana (top-left), Didace Kinuani (top-right) and Vital Kamerhe

Amida immersed herself in commerce, starting off with a clothing store, grocery and furniture before she struck her first gold when JB Mpiana forgot his own name at the sight of then 22-year-old lass.

In Congo, light skin complexion is considered of status. Every man with money raises their status in society by bleaching. But Amida was natural - every man's dream wife, she was.

Amida's love circle did not help the innuendos that followed. Three high-profile marriages inside a decade-and-half brought Beverly Hills and its Rodeo Drive to the 'Manhattan of Kinshasa' (Gombe) - for such was the impression her life conjured in the Congolese.

They saw in Amida a vixen who enters a bedroom with one man but emerges in towel smiling in the company of another, and completing it all with a suggestive wink at a third man struggling to control his desire (for her).

It is not a joke. But perhaps JB Mpiana was to blame.

Vital Kamerhe and Amida Shatur attend a national event in Kinshasa

Amida was the muse behind Mpiana's ballad, Feux de l'Amour (The Fires of Love). The song is the title track of the 1997 album that gave the world the explosive Ndombolo hit.

In Feux de l'Amour, Mpiana talks about a woman who turns his life upside down, disturbs his thoughts.

But he did not stop there. Showbiz is for showoffs and from the time the son of Agnes Lusambo and Albert Mbuyi Mpiana had received Amida's first smile, he was smitten to cabbages.

Mpiana did not just give Amida Ndombolo but also that kind of a lavish wedding every woman dreams of. Then she turned her into a trophy.

And trophies are presented. So Mpiana had a stream of guests in his house in Kin and Amida did her part in hosting them.

Only that these friends were like bees and bees do not just make endless trips to the flower for a pastime – they go to collect nectar and there was only one nectar here: Amida Shatur.

But something else triggered what was to happen next. Mpiana was enjoying life as it fell on his chubby cheeks.

Growing frustrated with the string of vixens the father of her two daughters and a son was rumoured to be sleeping with, Amida started man-marking JB Mpiana.

She was particularly upset by the presence of Nono Ba Diamant, a dancer who had defected from Koffi Olomide's Quartier Latin, around JB Mpiana.

In 2001 as Wenge Musica BCBG travelled for Bercy-Paris concert, Amida made a surprise appearance at the last rehearsal and forced JB Mpiana to drop a routine in which vixens had choreographed to make the crowd go crazy.

"Bedel, we've to talk," echoed many times in JB Mpiana's ears like Amida had said it in a cave.

She dragged him away from the rest of the band members and warned that if Nono appeared on stage, "Amida will disappear from your life's stage".

Nono, unaware of what had happened, waited for her turn backstage during the concert but she was never summoned to dance.

So it was that when Didi Kinuani turned into a bold bee, the 'Infinitive' - as his admirers call him - found a ground that had been shaken by JB Mpiana's apparent philandering.

Didi, a diamond magnate with a reputation for being generous, made his moves and in 2004, walked out of JB Mpiana’s plush home with Amida as his nectar for the honey he intended to eat at home.

Didi painted Kinshasa with love notes of his marriage to Amida on July 5, 2004, leaving many envious and JB Mpiana in utter shock.

This was an invite-only wedding and the rest, including JB Mpiana, could only see in the tabloids.

The old broom in Kamerhe proved vital for Amida Shatur.

Sadly for Didi, Amida loved diamonds like any other woman of high taste would. Even sadder was that among Didi’s very good friends was Vital Kamerhe, a man who was as rich as wealth itself and wore diamond studded underwear.

Vital, like his name, had all his vital parts attracted to Amida’s magnetic field. When Didi knocked up Amida, he was over the moon.

A boy came forth, Didi naming him Diama (Diamond). Amida fondly calls him Diams.

But the marriage soon hit turbulence as rumours that Amida was freelancing could not go away. Didi realised he had snatched more than he could chew and that honey can choke when eaten to ravishingly.

He quietly retreated to his diamond counters on the Angola-Congo border and managing 'Dikin' group which trades in precious stones.

Maurice Nguesso and Vital Kamerhe were on the long list of men hissing suggestively around Didi Kinuani's home. But it was the case of the ex that hit the diamond magnate hardest.

JB Mpiana had spent five years trying all his best to woo Amida back to his life. And it finally worked.

For his 42nd birthday, JB Mpiana prepared a grand celebration. The Pullman Grand Hotel Kinshasa was decorated with the touch that said a woman was in the picture.

Deep into the evening that June 2009, JB Mpiana picked the attention of his hundreds of Kinshasa's who-is-who guests and announced that Amida Shatur was - like Idi Amin would say - his wife "once again for the second time".

He said he had welcomed her back with even her other child, Diama, who was carried into the room by Mpiana's first born Daida, with second born Soraya Mpiana and Junior Mpiana in tow.

"Money can't buy love," he purred.

But even if you hide a flower in the greenhouse a bee will always find its way in there for the nectar. JB Mpiana built a nice greenhouse around Amida believing no man would ever get to see her again.

JB Mpiana became guarded and censored guests to his home so his trophy-of-a-wife would not be another pick-and-play Queen like it was in 2004.

But he allowed Maurice with his power and influence in Brazza, believing the Nguesso in him would not woo Amida. He also allowed Vital Kamerhe, a politician who seemed past that age of hissing at another man's wife.

Vital was 50 at the time, a father of nine children and into politics. He would found the Union for the Congolese Nation party in 2010.

But like his name says, age could not stop his intentions being vital.

Amida Shatur

In 2016, JB Mpiana flew Amida to Paris to deliver his fourth child - and her fifth. He was by her side to welcome a newborn son.

But the Ndombolo legend was reduced to a heap of heartbreak to learn that the boy, Isaac, was not his nocturnal downloads.

Soon Amida was travelling from Paris to Kinshasa to attend an official political meeting with President Joseph Kabila. Vital had negotiated to be named prime minister but Kabila cut him to size.

But he had Amida and for that, he took deep solace.

Amida took Isaac to his real father's palatial home and the wealthy businessman cum politician quickly tied her down with arguably Kin’s most expensive wedding on Valentine’s Day 2019.

Vital also turned out to be the old broom that knew how to sweep all the corners as Amida would put it in a poem on his 62nd birthday in 2021.

"You are my companion, my pillar," she said of the man who was serving time in prison for embezzlement of public funds.

"The vows made on our wedding day are forever etched in my heart and soul. They were not in vain... they are not in vain."

On June 11, 2020, Vital was sentenced to 20 years of labour for embezzling $50 million of President Felix Tshisekedi's 100-day emergency programme, money laundering and corruption.

As the penalty of forced labour is not applied in the DR Congo, the high court instance of Kinshasa la Gombe ordered Vital to serve its equivalent - 20 years in prison.

The court also ordered the confiscation of funds placed in the accounts of Amida Shatur, her brother-in-law Daniel Massaro and Soraya Mpiana as well as properties acquired with the embezzled funds.

Amida was engaged in real estate and the prosecution sought to attach properties in Paris' Maule, and in Orgeval (both in Yvelines).

She maintained they were vital parts of her past engagements with the wealthy men in Kinshasa.

Nicknamed “Kamerhéon” for his frequent changing of political allegiance, Vital had risen to be President Tshisekedi's chief of staff after abandoning alliance with Kabila.

And with him around the president, Amida got close to First Lady Denise Nyakeru Tshisekedi.

That relationship proved vital in saving Vital, who only served a year-and-a-half of his 20-year sentence before he was acquitted.

And with it, she banished all the bookmakers talks on "who is Amida Shatur marrying next?" because it appears that Vital has done what JB Mpiana failed to do with two chances, Didace Kinuani with his diamonds and Maurice Nguesso with his fly whisky.

Now 48, Amida Shatur appears to be settled. She runs a Foundation "La Colombe" with which she takes care of the underprivileged and women.

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