Mzansi Profiles! People Gareth Cliff Biography| Age, Education, Career, Controversies, Personal Life

Gareth Cliff Biography| Age, Education, Career, Controversies, Personal Life

Gareth Cliff Biography| Age, Education, Career, Controversies, Personal Life post thumbnail image

This is the biography of Gareth Rhydal Cliff, he is a South African radio and television personality. He gained prominence as the host of a weekday breakfast show on 5FM and as a judge on the M-Net reality competition series Idols, from the second season in 2003 to season 11 in 2015.

Gareth Cliff Age

He was born on the 26th of August 1977. As of 2024, he is 47 years old.

Gareth Cliff Biography

Gareth Cliff Biography (Image Credit: Instagram @grcliff)


Early Life and Education

Gareth Cliff was born in Pretoria, South Africa. While he provided limited details about his primary and secondary education, we know that he studied Law, International Relations, Politics, and History

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Gareth Cliff Career

Cliff began his professional radio career at 702 and later became the host of the breakfast show on 5FM. During his tenure at 5FM, his show featured a segment called “The Hollywood Report with Jen Su.” In 2009, he hosted his own talk show on M-Net called “The Gareth Cliff Show,” which unfortunately ended after one season.

In 2003, Cliff joined the cast of Idols South Africa as a judge, starting from the show’s second season. He continued to serve as a judge on the talent music show until its 11th season in 2015.

Throughout his career, Gareth Cliff has received several awards and recognition for his contributions to the industry. The People’s Choice Crystal Award has honored him as the Favorite Radio Personality, Kids’ Favorite TV Presenter, and Favorite Radio Presenter.”

Gareth Cliff has consistently ranked among the top South Africans in the HEAT Top 100. He has also been a frequent winner and finalist in the YOU awards.

Gareth Cliff Biography

Gareth Cliff Biography (Image Credit: Instagram @grcliff)

In 2013, he made a cameo appearance in the popular animated series Phineas and Ferb.

In 2014, Cliff and his entire team experienced removal from 5FM, leading him to establish a live-streaming website for his radio show. They filmed the show every morning for a reality series titled “The Gareth Cliff Show Live” on Comedy Central.

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In 2014, Gareth Cliff launched CliffCentral, an online content hub specializing in podcasting and online radio. The platform offers uncensored content, free from the regulations of the Broadcasting Complaints Commission of South Africa (BCCSA). His former 5FM breakfast team, Leigh-Ann Mol, Damon Kalvari, and Mabale Moloi, joined him in this new venture and initially featured as part of his team on “The Gareth Cliff Show.”

CliffCentral has been the platform for various shows and podcasts, including “SexTalk,” which gained attention for featuring an orgasm live on air on National Orgasm Day in 2017. In 2019, Gareth Cliff hosted a panel of well-known South African broadcast personalities on Pure Conversations.

Gareth Cliff’s podcast series, “Blind History,” produced by CliffCentral and hosted by Gareth Cliff and Anthony Mederer, was nominated for a New York Festivals Radio Award in 2019 in the Best Education podcast category.

In October 2021, Nando’s terminated its sponsorship of Cliff’s show, “The Burning Platform,” which was broadcast on CliffCentral. This decision came after outrage over comments made by Gareth Cliff as the host. He described Mudzuli Rakhivhane’s (member of One South Africa Movement) experiences of racism as “anecdotal” and “unimportant.” The incident raised concerns about Cliff’s failure to provide a platform for free speech and his interruption of Rakhivhane, preventing her from expressing her views adequately.

Other Works

In 2011, Gareth published a book titled “Gareth Cliff on Everything,” in which he expressed his sometimes controversial opinions on various topics.

Gareth Cliff also wrote an autobiography titled “Cliffhanger: Confessions of a Shock Jock,” which was published in November 2016.

Gareth Cliff Controversy

In 2004, Gareth Cliff found himself in contravention of the code protecting religious freedom by the Broadcasting Complaints Commission of South Africa (BCCSA) due to an interview he conducted with “Jesus” on his show. Cliff and 5FM were not subjected to sanctions as the station took appropriate action by suspending him for two days, and he issued an on-air apology.


In early 2016, Gareth Cliff was fired from Idols after making a racist comment on social media.

However, in January of the same year, he successfully appealed his suspension through a court case, resulting in his reinstatement as a judge on the television music competition show Idols South Africa on M-Net.

Personal Life

Gareth Cliff keeps his personal life private, and not much is known about his marital or love life.


TVSA- Gareth Cliff

702’s Gareth Cliff joins 5fm

Court says Idols must take Gareth Cliff back

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