By Eva Irewole
It’s official, the eighth edition of the All Africa Music Awards (AFRIMA) will be held in Dakar, Senegal.
But the continental music show, which is now dubbed the Teranga Edition for this year, has been moved till January from the initial date of December 8th to 11th 2022.
In a statement issued by the organisers on Sunday, the Government of Senegal has accepted and undertaken to host the music awards show at the Senegalese capital.
At a joint press conference cum host country unveiling held at the Hotel King Fahd Royal Palace, in Dakar, Senegal last Friday November 4, 2022 the statement said it was agreed that the awards ceremony would now be held from January 12 to 15, 2023 shifting the previous date up by four weeks as jointly announced by the International Committee of AFRIMA, the African union commission and the Republic of Senegal. This also means that the voting deadline for the nominees will now be shifted till January 13, 2023, at 23.00 (CAT).
This will be the first time the main awards ceremony will be held in a francophone country after past editions. Aside Nigeria, Ghana also hosted the event in 2018.
In attendance at Friday’s press conference were the representatives of Senegalese Minister of Culture and communication; and Minister of Tourism and Air travels, Special Adviser to the President of Senegal, Dr. Massamba Gaye, alongside local and international media professionals; AFRIMA delegates; African Union Commission officials; African music stakeholders; 8th AFRIMA nominees and African artistes, Iba One from Mali, DJ Neptune (Nigeria), DJ Moh Green (French-Algerian), Pape Diouf; Jeba; Sidy diop; Adiouza; Zbest family; Akhlou Brick Paradise; Jeba; Demba Guisse; Pa Gaye mbaye; Kane diallo; and Jamman from Senegal among others.
The Head of Culture Division, Social Affairs Division, African Union Commission (AUC), Angela Martins, said that the African Union was excited to have the awards hold in a francophone country. “The AUC has been a strong partner and collaborator of the prestigious awards since its first edition in 2014. AFRIMA has grown to become the only continental platform that aims to promote and disseminate musical works and immeasurable talent of African Musicians from both young and old generations.
“This prestigious platform gives expression and supports the implementation of the AU policy instruments in the creative economy including the AU Plan of Action on Cultural and Creative Industries.
“Allow me to join the international Committee of All Africa Music Awards in expressing gratitude and appreciation to the Government of Senegal for accepting to host AFRIMA 8th Edition on 12th to 15th January, 2023 and for making history by being the 3rd AU Member State to host the Awards. The hosting of AFRIMA by the Republic of Senegal will happen at a time when Senegal will still be the Chairperson of the African Union and it is an opportune occasion to close its chairmanship by promoting our rich arts, culture and heritage.
“As you are aware, Senegal is known for its huge investment in the arts, culture and heritage. The hosting of the AFRIMA gathering is thus a step in the right direction to bring back the beautiful city of Dakar to the map as one of the capital cities of music in Africa and around the world.”
In his acceptance speech, Senegal’s Minister of Tourism and Air Transport, Mr. Alioune Sarr, represented by Phillipe Ba said, “Personally and on behalf of Senegalese government, welcome to Sénégal, the home of the champions of football. Now Sénégal is also positioning herself to become the champions of music because we are hosting the 8th AFRIMA. We are happy knowing that Sénégal becomes the third country and the first Francophone country to host this great event.”
I can tell you that our ministry (Tourism) and the Senegalese government will partner and collaborate with you (AFRIMA) for a great success of AFRIMA in Senegal because our President, H.E. Macky Sall, is not only the president of the African Union but also wishes to position himself as the President of all African Lovers of Culture which AFRIMA exudes.” He concluded.
On his part, Senegal’s Minister of Culture and Communication, Aliou Sow, represented by Ousmane Barro Dione, the Director General de La Compaignie Nationale de Theatre, Daniel Sorano, said, “I feel honoured to be representing the Minister of Culture, alongside my colleague at this event in preparation for the 8th edition of AFRIMA Awards in Sénégal from the 12th to 15th January 2023. We are honoured to welcome this huge event to this country’ for the benefit of the young people in Senegal and the image of the country.’
“The 8th AFRIMA in Senegal is officially tagged the Teranga edition which encompasses the good hospitality, warmth, generosity and sharing that is the core to Senegalese life. In addition to celebrating Africa in a magical way and promoting the values of Senegalese people globally through the AFRIMA platform, the youths, who are the central focus of the 8th edition will be exposed to opportunities in the creative economy and new music business models, monetization in music, intellectual property rights and licensing as well as collaborations with other global African music superstars that will be participating in 8th AFRIMA in Dakar,’’ explained AFRIMA’s President and Executive Producer, Mike Dada.
AFRIMA’s country Director in Senegal, Matar Diop said, “I am excited that the International Committee of AFRIMA and the African Union listened to our plea and pitch to bring AFRIMA to Senegal for the benefits of the tourism and music industry in Senegal that will have impact on our youths. I thank the President and the government of Republic of Senegal for supporting this project that will change the creative industry and the tourism landscape of Senegal for good. We look forward in welcoming Africa and the world to Dakar, Senegal on January 12 to 15, 2023 with Nanga Def Africa.
“As the whole world gears towards the 8th edition of the All Africa Music Awards, AFRIMA, African music lovers are encouraged to keep voting for their desired winners, using the voting portal live at www.afrima.org and take part in the events on social media platforms (IG/TikTok – @afrima.official ; Facebook – Afrimawards; Twitter – @afrimaofficial; LinkedIn – AFRIMA).”
The event is scheduled to commence on Thursday January 12, 2023, with a courtesy visit to the President of the Host Country, while a host city tour, school visit and gift presentation (as part of AFRIMA’s CSR), as well as welcome soiree will be held on the same day. The 4-day event continues on Friday January 13, 2023, with the African Music Business Summit and the AFRIMA Urban Music Fest; while the main rehearsals and nominees exclusive party will be held on Saturday January 14, 2023; the event will climax on Sunday January 15, 2023, with the live awards ceremony broadcast by television stations to several countries around the world.