At the seventh All Africa Music Awards, Nigerian artists including Burna Boy, Davido, and Wizkid dominated the winners’ list (Afrima).This year, well-known artists including Nigerian duo P-Square and Ghanaian artist Black Sherif took the centre stage to perform.
Nigeria’s Asake, won Breakout Artist of the Year. Asake, whose real name is Ahmed Ololade, said the victory was a dream come true in his acceptance speech: “It started as a dream, but today, it’s a reality. Thanks to God, my label and to all my fans listening to my songs.”
In 2022, Asake’s music dominated the Afrobeats music genre with hits like Omo Ope, Peace Be Unto You, and Sungba. His music is renowned for its memorable Yoruba and Pidgin English lyrics, instantly recognisable beat, and his catchphrase, Ololade mi Asake, which appears at the beginning of many of his songs.
However, the performer experienced tragedy in December 2022 when a stampede at the venue resulted in the deaths of two individuals at his show in London.
Burna Boy, who won Artist of the Year and Album of the Year, Wizkid, who won Best West African Act, and Davido, who won Best Male Artist in Inspirational African Music, didn’t appear to be present at the presentation to claim their honours.
In the lead-up to the awards, there had been some controversy after individuals signed a petition asking that Nigerian artist Brymo not be given the Songwriter of the Year award because of his offensive remarks towards the Igbo ethnic community in Nigeria.
The musician, whose real name is Olawale Ashimi, had more than 40,000 people sign the petition against him. Iba One from Mali ultimately prevailed, and Brymo afterwards apologised, stating he didn’t mean to offend.
Also at the elaborate event held in the capital of Senegal, Dakar, Didi B of Ivory Coast won the award for song of the year with Tala.
However, Senegal made history this year for being the first Francophone country hosting the awards which have a collaboration with the African Union.