By Anthony Okafor
The music and entertainment industry of Cameroon has pledged its support and commitment to the African Union Commission, AU, and the 2019 All Africa Music Awards, AFRIMA, in the actualization of the vision for an integrated, prosperous and unified Africa through the continental awards platform.
This was made known during the AFRIMA 2019 Cameroon Stakeholders’ Conference and meeting held on Friday, June 28 at the Las Vegas VIP, Sable, Bonamoussadi, Douala and attended by media personalities, record label owners, Cameroon music stars and past AFRIMA winners and nominees.
Representing the International Committee of AFRIMA at the conference were the AFRIMA Regional Director, Central Africa, Mr. Ernest Ewane; AFRIMA Associate Producer, Ms. Adenrele Niyi and the AFRIMA Head, Media, Mr. Sola Dada.
Delivering the opening address, Ms. Adenrele Niyi said the decision to hold the stakeholders’ conference in Cameroon was as a result of the growing impact of Cameroonian music and culture across Africa.
“Cameroon has shown that it is a powerhouse of music in Central Africa especially with Cameroonian artistes featuring prominently on the annual AFRIMA nominees list. An appreciable number of Cameroonians have won AFRIMA trophies in past editions including the legendary Manu Dibango who has been honoured by the AU and AFRIMA for his influence on Africa music. However, the African Union and AFRIMA are also interested in examining ways we can use the 6th AFRIMA programme of events to engender greater unity and peace in all regions of Cameroon working with all relevant stakeholders in the country”.
The team revealed details of the 6th AFRIMA ‘Call for Entry/Entry Submission’ process which opened on May 15 to end on August 2, where African music professionals from across the continent submit their musical works, songs and recordings via the official AFRIMA website www.afrima.org for a possible shot at nomination in one or more of the 36 categories of AFRIMA. Information was also shared about the programmes for the annual continental awards to effectively engage music talents and content creators from Cameroon who are key stakeholders and beneficiaries of the awarding process.
Among key attendees were Cameroonian artistes Wax Dey, Mr. Leo, Ewube, Mic Monster, Sango Edi, Wams, Divine Verjika, Awu and media personalities such as Che Che Elvis, Miss Gina Promotions, Fon Felix, Emmanuel Asafor and many other stakeholders in Cameroon’s culture and music industry.
Speaking at the conference, Cameroonian music star and AFRIMA 2016 winner, Best Male Artiste in Central Africa, Wax Dey, stated that being an artiste and a business executive, a strategic collaboration between the Cameroon culture industry and AFRIMA and the AU would further aid the development of music and arts in the country.
“I want to see beyond winning awards to the opportunities for investment and growth in our local music industry in Cameroon. That is why I would support AFRIMA hosting one of its build up events or even the main awards in Cameroon. This would be advantageous for us and we should offer any assistance we can to make this happen here in Cameroon.
Later on Friday evening, Las Vega VIP hosted AFRIMA to a “Night with the Stars” with top Cameroon celebrities and artistes including Cameroon Music Producer Salatiel; star artiste, Mr. Leo; breakout Cameroon music star, Blaise B amongst others who came to party with AFRIMA.
Prior to the conference in Douala, on Thursday, June 27, AFRIMA officials had hosted media and music industry stakeholders in Yaounde, the Cameroon capital to a meet and greet to give insights into the 6th AFRIMA programme of activities.
Meanwhile, from August 3 to 5 submitted entries will go through a ‘Pre-Screening’ process by the Screening Committee of AFRIMA, followed by the ‘AFRIMA Adjudication’ process from August 6 to August 12 conducted by the International Jury of AFRIMA comprising a 13-man panel of experienced and respected African music experts and practitioners who will carefully and painstakingly assess and select the very best amongst submitted entries to occupy the AFRIMA 2019 Nominees’ List.
A ‘World Media Announcement of AFRIMA 2019 Nominees’ List’ will take place on August 13 to publicly unveil African artistes and/or works by Africans that have been nominated.
On August 19, African music fans and followers around the globe will begin to participate in the ‘AFRIMA Public Voting’ process to be conducted on www.afrima.org during which the 2019 nominees will receive votes that could lead them to emerging winners in the various categories of the awards. The voting process, which closes 24 hours before the main awards ceremony, would be monitored and audited by a reputable International Auditing Firm.
The Main Awards Ceremony, a three-day fiesta of music, glamour, Afrocentrism and entertainment, holds from November 6 to November 9 in the official awards Host City. The four-day event commences with the Welcome Soiree, followed by the AFRIMA Music Village, the Host City Tour, the Africa Music Business Summit, the exclusive Nominees Party and concluded with the live Awards Ceremony.
Fans of African music globally can follow along and take part in the AFRIMA 2019 events on social media, live stream on the AFRIMA website, the AFRIMA App and by tuning to over 84 television stations which are AFRIMA media partners.
Other build up activities leading up to the main awards ceremony include conferences, stakeholders meetings, festivals, speaking engagements, University Campus Concert and courtesy visits to heads of governments and leaders of institutions in corporate and government sectors across the five regions of Africa to achieve an all-round engagement with all relevant AFRIMA stakeholders.
The 2018 edition of the main awards ceremony was hosted by the Republic of Ghana, through the partnership of the Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture. The spectacular 5th AFRIMA showcased the finest of Ghanaian tourism and hospitality as well as the dynamism and brilliance of Africa’s music and culture industry talents.