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Controversy at Midlands Music Awards

The second edition of the Midlands Music Awards (MMA), which took place on Saturday night at Midlands Hotel, courted controversy on the showbiz scene with disturbing reports that some nominees were asking to be removed from the list.

A brainchild of Image Modeling Agency’s Mavis Koslek, who holds the Miss Zimbabwe licence to run the Miss Midlands and Miss Gweru pageants, the awards were launched last year at the same venue.

Popular Gweru based Zimdancehall artist Wilton ‘Legion’ Doba of “Mafiriji paKadoma” fame led the ‘rebels’.

Said Legion, in communication to Koslek seen by 263Chat: “Thank you for nominating me for the Midlands Music Awards in the Best Dancehall (artist) category but for the following reasons may you please remove me:

  1. It has been brought to our attention that some of the organisers are also nominees
  2. Midlands Music (Centre) is not on e nominees how? They r representing us nationally.
  3. Club DJs, which clubs are you looking at without DJ Tamuka(Makuluni), Dave Harry, Brickcity, etc?
  4. What Afro Jazz (are you talking about) without Shingi Mangoma?
  5. Best House, No Zimboys’ ‘Ngoma Dzejecha’

“I appreciate the gesture to nominate me but please remove me

Thank you. – Legion’’.

In defence, MMA said those who ‘didn’t enter did not submit materials as last year.’

Said Koslek: “Let’s work together, as people in the Midlands arts. This is open to all those musicians, artists who want to register (to) participate in the awards.”

She added that adjudication was carried out and screened by ‘professional musicians.’

However Legion shot back: “I did not submit but was nominated. How (come)?”The outspoken musician argued that musician L. Kat was ‘not known but got three nominees.”

“How (come)?”

Legion went on to threaten the organizers: “Either (yo)u rectify or remove me or I’ll juss have to make e statement public that I want out thank u.”

MMA seem to have danced to Legion’s tune, with Mangoma now a nominee, as well as one of the musicians who will tonight be sharing the stage with the likes of gospel musician Matthias Mhere, who did his secondary education in the city, L Kat, Goodchild, Ur Highness, and Soul Afrika.

Kuda Mavunga, the public relations officer for MMA, was quoted in the media recently as saying that ‘a lot of things (were) new this year.’

She informed: “Amongst the list of improvements is our voting system. This year we had an adjudication panel made up of people with strong musical backgrounds and are in various departments within the music industry.

“They sat through a day-long workshop, judging all the music received. Their marks contributed a 60% score and the top four with the highest scores emerged as nominees in their respective genres/categories. The other 40% is derived from the public votes, which was conducted via our voting line/platform that opened from June 4-16, 2015.”

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