By Njai Joszor
MTV Networks Africa announced its very own MTV Africa Music Awards event Tuesday.
International stars Alicia Keys, Rihanna, and Akon were among those nominated for the awards which are slated to take place Nov. 22 at The Velodrome, Abuja.
The nominations for the inaugural pan-African music awards ceremony were revealed at a VIP soirée at Planet One, Lagos, Nigeria by Alex Okosi, Senior Vice President and Managing Director, MTV Networks Africa and Norman Moyo, Chief Marketing Officer, Zain Nigeria, in the presence of nominees D’Banj, Wahu, DJ Cleo and Naeto C.
Selected by an independent voting ‘academy’ of 150 music professionals and opinion formers from 30 countries in sub-Saharan Africa, the nominations for the MTV Africa Music Awards with Zain showcase the wealth of musical talent that Africa has to offer, and provide the ultimate vehicle for young Africans to salute the African and international artists that rock their worlds.
Heading the nominee list with 5 ‘nods’ from the MAMA nominations academy are Nigerian R&B duo P-Square (Best Group, Best Live Performer, Best R&B, Best Video and Artist of the Year), closely followed by triple nominees D’Banj (Nigeria) and HHP (South Africa), who go head-to-head in the Best Male and Artist of the Year categories. Wahu (Kenya) and Asa (Nigeria) share the honours as the most nominated female artists with two nominations each for Wahu (Best New Act, Best Female) and Asa (Best Female, Artist of the Year).
Topping the country roll of honour with 18 individual nominations is South Africa, closely followed by Nigeria (16 nominations).
Kenyan artists scored three nominations: Jua Cali for Best Male and Wahu for Best New Act & Best Female.
Ghanaian artists were recognised in two categories: Best Live Performance (Samini) and Best New Act (Kwaw Kese), while Mozambique, Gabon, Tanzania and Uganda all scored one nominee with recognition for Professor Jay (Tanzania), East Africa Bashment Crew (Uganda), Movaizhaleine (Gabon) and Dama do Bling (Mozambique). US, and European artists are represented in three categories with nods to Akon, Rihanna and Alicia Keys for Best R&B, while rappers The Game and Lil Wayne both feature in Best Hip Hop.
Prominent in the Best Alternative category are British rockers Coldplay, competing against, Buraka Som Sistema (Portugal) and a trio of South African contenders: Goldfish, The Parlotones and Seether.
To vote for your favourite artist or video, please go to mama.mtvbase.com. Music fans with WAP/GPRS enabled phones may also vote at m.mama.mtvbase.com (standard internet charges apply). Voting closes on Tuesday 18 November 2008.