1st Zim radio awards flop
THE controversial much awaited inaugural Zimbabwe Radio Awards (ZiRA), which were held at 1+1 Loncheng Plaza was a flop as it was marred by poor organisation.
The awards, which made headlines for postponement week after week, caused a stir early morning as the organisers later announced that the venue was changed from Celebration Centre to 1+1 bar on the ninth hour.
“We want to sue the Celebration Centre venue officials for abandoning us last minute. They stated that they have another church event happening, so they couldn’t accommodate us, yet we had already booked.
This was last minute resulting in us seeking last minute venue at 1+1 bar,” said Maxwell Nyatsambo, ZiRA representative.
This did not go down well with some nominees who were still in the dark of what was happening, resulting in half the nominees not attending the event.
According to a close source, the selected host for the red carpet interviews, Lillian Madyara affectionately known as “Hollywood Lee” also pulled out after the disorganisation of the show resulting in no show at the red carpet as everyone was entering the venue like boarding a bus.
To make matters worse, the event started two hours late because of few people and since the venue was booked to 10PM, everyone was later chucked out hurriedly for the next event before the show ended.
The awards were later announced haphazardly with now the masters of ceremony announcing winners without nomination because of time.
Again many people were later shocked to hear and see that some of the nominees were cut to three names compared to lists which were published, resulting in some stating that it was already staged.
The organisers broke the record in the history of arts in Zimbabwe for having a nomination list with more than 100 names in about 30 categories.
The event which was organised by online magazine Celebrity Check saw bubbly “newsbae” Rumbidzai Takawira and Justin Mahlahla hosting the show with no guest of honour. The show acted like a talent show as only upcoming young musicians such as K Gee 40, Nicci Cavaji and DJ Smith among others put a lukewarm performances while DJ Bhelo cum comedian looked like a lost soul in bar as he dished out dry jokes centred on radio.
Hip-hop sensation Blessed Zikhali affectionately known as 8L was disrupted on stage as he was to perform as it was time out for the event. He didn’t not perform and left the stage disappointed. Beatboxer Probeatz managed to light up the stage with his electrifying performance which left the crowd in awe.
ZBC radio stations such as Power FM, Radio Zimbabwe, Sport FM and National FM among others deejays dominated the awards as they scooped most categories.
A clear analysis showed that since these were the first awards, it was better off just to appreciate the good works by those who started radio rather than having a voting (competition) as it was now obvious after it emerged that the pioneers scooped most awards.
It was later boring after most winners who were not present to do their acceptance speech — “moments of fame” as other workmates later collected the prize for them.
Zimpapers Star FM radio presenters, KVG won the Most Popular Urban Female Presenter while DJ Mox scooped Best Urban Male Presenter.
Speaking at the event, show organiser Maxwell Nyatsambo said was delighted witnessing the ground breaking ceremony.
“ZiRA are first of its kind celebrating the radio personalities and force behind radio. It wasn’t easy and need to thank everyone who understood our call last minute. Congrats to the winners, through your support next year would be bigger and better. Some thought we would embark the show. We even visited sangomas and churches for this event to be a success. We know media wants to make news and thank you for covering us,” he said.
Radio personality Zandile Ndlovu better known as “The Zazalicious One” said that the initiative is a great one but it was, however, a rushed one and the treatment they received from organisers wasn’t good. “The initiative was great, however, it was rushed. Such kinds of events that have public personalities as ourselves will put them in the spotlight (Organisers). As nominees we weren’t updated on changes. Even at the event not even refreshments were given to us. What was really meant to be a night of celebrating radio excellence felt far from it? As custodians of radio programmes we deserve to be treated like the radio royalty that we are,” she said.
Some who commented provided that their identity is protected said the National Arts Council should chip in next year including sponsors.
“I think the arts council should assist such initiative because we won’t be tolerating this year. The awards are good as they are recognising the works by those behind the microphone but they should be handled proper and allow room for creative. They acted like a prize given ceremony, nothing serious. Whoever is holding the licence to do such should do much research and have resources to avoid loopholes,” she said.
However the awards ran under the theme, “Honouring a celebrity behind a celebrity” a brainchild of Agrippa Palaz and Munashe Chidongwe.
The awards are meant for radio personalities, in recognition of their work in informing and entertaining people while at the same time motivating them to work hard.