awardYes, finally African artists can look beyond a mere tokenism for their hard work as MTV Networks plans to launch an African version of its signature annual music awards. We no longer have to scramble for a single award at the MTV European Music Awards (EMA).

The announcement was made in Abuja this week by MTV Networks Africa senior VP and Managing Director Alex Okosi. Alex revealed that the MTV Africa Music Awards will take place at Abuja’s Velodrome venue on Saturday November 22. In a press statement, organisers said the MTV Africa Music Awards which would be sponsored by telecom giant, Zain, will be a two-hour TV broadcast, combining performances from top African and international stars with award presentations and an international superstar host, perhaps me! LOL!

The event will be broadcast around the world on MTV plus online, mobile and radio platforms, including pan-African TV channel MTV Base (DStv Channel 322 and GTV), MTV2 (USA) and African terrestrial TV channels STV and AIT (Nigeria), TBC (Tanzania) and TV3 (Ghana), and selected partner radio stations across the continent. The premiere event is expected to highlight contemporary African and international genres including hip-hop, hip life, R&B, rock, Afro Pop, Afro Beat, Kwaito, Bongo Flava, dancehall, soul, rock and funk.

Alex Okosi said that The MTV Africa Music Awards will create an unprecedented global platform for African musicians to shine and to spread the word about Africa’s extraordinary music talent. I just wish that Nigeria and South Africa who have so much hold on MTV Base Africa will not bulldoze their way into the awards with the economic and numerical strengths.

In the build-up to the November ceremony, four concerts featuring nominees will take place in Johannesburg (Nov. 5), Nairobi (Nov. 8), the Democratic Republic of the Congo (Nov. 13) and Lagos (Nov. 15). Hurray Africa!

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