Tuesday, 17 March 2009

The Future man... is the ‘Entertainer’ • 9ice, Cobhams... they got theirs too

JUST few weeks after winning multiple awards at the first-ever MTV Africa Music Awards (MAMA) held recently at the Velodrome, Abuja, Koko master, D’Banj has grabbed one more plaque. The Why Me crooner was last month enthroned as the Young Person of the Year at this year’s edition of the annual Future Awards held at the Shell Hall, MUSON Center, Onikan, Lagos.
The colourful event saw D’banj beat Asa, TY Bello, Yagazie Chukwumerije, Damola Osayomi, Oluchi Orlando, Cobhams Asuquo and his producer Don Jazzy, to clinch the coveted award, which is the most prestigious of the awards. Though presently out of the country, his friends, who stood in for the energetic performer, received the award on his behalf.
D’banj’s emergence as the Young Person of the Year generated arguments among guests present at the event that culminated in an all night party at Swe Bar, just opposite the award venue. While some were of the opinion that Chukwumerije, having won a bronze medal for the country in the last Olympics, deserves the awards, another group insists Nigerian songbird, Asa, would have been a better option. As for producer Cobhams, his supporters believed that for a physically challenged young man to be churning out hits in the industry, he deserves to be unveiled as the winner in that category. The agitations continued in small groups as guests depart the venue for the after party.

HOWEVER, a mini-research conducted amid the heated arguments shows that, of all the agitators, a good number of them never voted in any of the categories listed for the award ceremony; even when that of the Young Person of the year was done right inside the award venue! Now, why are they questioning the result? The fact remains that to win in any of the categories, a nominee must score enough votes more than the others. In this situation, D’banj, who seems to have more active and participatory fans, pulled more votes than the rest.
Notwithstanding, it would be recalled that last year, D’banj embarked upon a charity work through his Koko Foundation, visiting motherless babies homes and orphanages, where he donated food items and cash. On the other hand, his last album launch is still on record as one of the biggest in the past years, with both current and former governors of Lagos State, Babatunde Fashola and Bola Tinubu in attendance.
Meanwhile, Gongo Aso crooner, 9ice, who recently won the MOBO Award, was declared Artiste of the Year at the event, thereby taking over from D’Banj, who won in that category last year.
Like his colleague, 9ice was not present to receive his award. However, Derenle Edu, a TV presenter with Soundcity, who is also a close associate of 9ice, received the award on behalf of the CEO of Alakpomeji records.

THE crowd roared in excitement as Cobhams was declared Music Producer of the year. As far as this year’s Future Awards is concerned, the emergence of Asuquo as the winner in the category, received the nod of almost all guests present. “He deserves it, he deserves it,” was on the lips of many, who gave the Cross River State-native a standing ovation, followed by a resounding rounds of applause, as the award-wining producer made his way to the elevated stage, supported by an excited young lady. Cobhams dedicated the award to his fans for their support over the years. It would be recalled that the producer had in the past, worked with popular artistes such as Queen, Charly Boy, Ifeoma and Rooftop MCs among others.

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