The entertainment industry is alive once again as artistes, fans and stakeholders look forward to one of the biggest and prestigious music extravaganzas in Ghana. Indeed the Ghana Music Awards is an event where stars are made musically and talents are discovered and celebrated. However, since last year, there has been a fierce debate over the fight between the board of the awards and Charles Nii Armah Jnr. popularly known as Shatta Wale which resulted in the works of the artiste not accepted for nomination.
According to the CEO of Charter House, organizers of the awards, Theresa Ayoade, at a press conference in Accra, Ghana, she disclosed that the controversial artiste will not be nominated for the Ghana Music Awards if he does not complete the process of officially apologizing for maligning the GMA board.
The 17th edition of the Ghana Music Awards which is to take place on May 7, 2016, at the Accra International Conference Centre is already generating a lot of controversies following the disqualification of one of Ghana’s top dance hall artistes, Shatta Wale who has a huge fan base due to his artistic prowess and hits songs. His fans have registered their displeasure over the board’s decision, adding that if the Kaikai hitmaker’s songs are not allowed to compete with other hit songs, it will make the awards less credible.
Shatta, who is currently one of the most sought after artistes and who recently performed in Nigeria at the GLO CAF Awards in Abuja, had criticized and made mockery of the awards publicly last year and also declared that the organizers of the Ghana Music Awards should never put his songs up for nominations in the awards. He said any attempt to add his work will force him to sue the event company in charge of the awards, and the organizers, Charter House which had dragged Shatta Wale to court for posting four videos considered defamatory on social media, with the case still pending in court.
Some of his colleagues advised that the board should put aside all accusations they have against the musician and move on by allowing him to contest in this year’s Ghana Music Awards due to his many hit songs which are well appreciated by Ghanaians. His die-hard fans are already destroying posters of the giant telecommunication network, Vodafone as the official sponsors of the awards just to register their displeasure over the board’s decision to disqualify him indefinitely from the awards till he publicly apologized to the board.
Shatta responded to his disqualification hours later via social media: “Why should I always apologize for the monster you have made me become when no one has ever apologized for making me this way. If you put me in a cage like an animal and feed me with fresh bloody meat for years, imagine what will happen if I break the cage and come out. I will be forced to live the bloody way you trained me”.
Reacting to the disqualification, dancehall king, Samini was quoted to have said, “It’s someone’s problem with someone. It’s between Shatta Wale and GMAs. I don’t want to put my mouth into it, and it will later generate into something else. I think they should deal with their problem. I don’t want to come in”.
His former manager, popularly known as Bulldog said they had already started the process of making amends with the organizers until Shatta Wale changed his management team. Therefore, he doesn’t really have much to say about his disqualification.
Shatta Wale, who has since released a song, Prove you wrong, explained why he will not apologize when nobody has ever apologized to him and he will also prove to his critics that he is the next big thing to come out of Ghana.
Responding to Criss Waddle’s reaction, who, like Shatta also did not get a nomination, he disclosed that his voicing out his views in support of Shatta Wale might have caused him not to be nominated. Criss Waddle, who called the bluff of the organizers for nominating a song Ay3 Late by one of Ghana’s most popular rappers, Pappy Kojo, in the hip-hop song of the year category, called them whack for such act. And Shatta Wale responded, via his facebook page to Criss Waddle’s rant over the awards saying, “Real solja I respeck n salute u everytime, big up Criss Waddle u large #notime”.
However, a stakeholder in the Ghanaian entertainment industry, and a presenter on radio, Kwame Gyan, seemed to disagree with the majority who feel Shatta Wale should be given a second chance. He added his voice to the trending issue stating that the board has sounded out a very succinct message to people out there. If he said if the award is to be taken seriously, it must be respected. He added the organizers have earned his respect with their decision. He said if he was part of Shatta Wale’s team, he will advise he apologize to his client and put on a brave face afterwards. He added the artiste must be told he can’t eat his cake and have it.