Mandela, Obasanjo, wa Thiong o, Tutu, others for AFRIMA Patrons


Ahead of the maiden edition of the All African Music Awards, AFRIMA, a continental showpiece to celebrate the rich musical heritage of Africa and her talented artistes for the economic growth of the continent, the International Committee of AFRIMA has thrown open the process by which members of the Board of Patrons for Afrima, will emerge.

The six patrons to make up the board would be selected by popular votes from the long list of illustrious Africans who have distinguished themselves in various spheres of human endeavour and social-economic life such as governance, arts and entertainment, philanthropy, business, academia and social advocacy.

African citizens living on the continent or abroad, who are 50 years and above, qualify for nominations. However, incumbent public office holders are ineligible for consideration.

According to a press release signed by a member of the International Committee and Chairman, Media Committee for AFRIMA, Mr. Steve Ayorinde, “The entire process to select the six patrons must be devoid of politics, prejudice or personal interest. Anything short of meritorious appointment can taint the awards project and rob it of its vaunted integrity and independence.

“We want Africa to make this decision of choosing ‘their patrons’ for ‘their award’, rather than have patrons rammed down their throats”.

Another member of the International Committee and AFRIMA’s Director of Brand Communications and Sponsorship, Ms. Matlou Tsotetsi, said further that the African public would play a vital role in selecting the six patrons in consonance with the core values of AFRIMA –FACE IT which stands for Fairness, Authenticity, Creativity, Excellence, Integrity and Transparency.

“It is essential that persons nominated as AFRIMA patrons embody FACE IT in their personal and professional life, as well as also bringing it to bear in their advisory capacity for the ennobling awards project”, Tsotetsi stated.

After strategic meetings, consultations with key stakeholders and suggestions from African music lovers, a long list of 15 nominees has been unveiled by the International Committee.  “This first list of nominees is just a guide to streamline the process and give direction so people are not nominating from an uninformed perspective”, explained Ayorinde.

The first list of nominees for the AFRIMA Board of Patrons are: Desmond Tutu (South Africa), Olusegun Obasanjo (Nigeria), Winnie Madikizela–Mandela (South Africa), Kofi Annan (Ghana), Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o (Kenya), Mohammed ‘Mo’ Ibrahim (Sudan), Emeka Anyaoku (Nigeria), Patrice Motsepe (South Africa), Alpha Oumar Konare (Mali), Dame Patience Jonathan (Nigeria), Martha Namundjebo-Tilahun (Namibia), Mohammed Ibn-Chambas (Ghana), Joaquim Alberto Chissano (Mozambique), Kenneth Kaunda (Zambia) and Bola Tinubu (Nigeria).


Since it is an all-inclusive African project with exciting programmes in the build up to the main awards ceremony on October 25, 2014, fans and followers of African music and culture on the continent or abroad can begin to send in their nominations to be added to the unveiled list. The maximum number of nominees on the long list will not exceed 50 names. “And, discussions are ongoing with most of the nominees who are glad about the reception and enthusiasm shown by Africans so far”, said Tsotetsi

Sending names of nominees for the AFRIMA Board of Patrons opens to the public on AFRIMA website on Monday, February 10 and closes on Friday, March 7. Entries are to be sent in this format: The nominee’s full name, country of birth, age and reason why this person fits the bill of being named AFRIMA Patron in not more than one hundred words.

Entries will also be accepted on other AFRIMA social media platforms like Twitter: @afrimawards and Facebook:

Voting for the final six patrons will commence shortly after nominations close at a date to be communicated subsequently, according to the release.

The 2014 All Africa Music Awards will produce a star-studded, world-class event to be held in Nigeria on Saturday, October 25, 2014, with live performances and television broadcast to 84 countries on 109 television stations around the world.


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