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MBABANE – MTN SWAMA awards have cleared the vague misconceptions around the forthcoming awards to take place December 1.

MTN SWAMA awards have issued out a press statement where the final stage of the post-verification of the nominees phase for the second MTN SWAMA Awards.The process has been conducted , concluded swiftly and also reveals that voting lines for this year’s MTN SWAMA Awards have been opened.

MTN SWAMA President Melusi Zox Dlamini has stated that the nominees’ post-verification process, which ideally should not exceed more than seven days as per global standards, was instituted and concluded last Friday, and that the panel of judges concluded it within reasonable time.

The statement further went on to reveal that a small but significant number of artists who had been nominated by the MTN SWAMA awards, who had considered the public nominations list, duly declined nomination.
“Obviously, they were within their rights to do so, as is done elsewhere globally. This then led to a back-and-forth process of consolidating the final nominees, resulting in a few omissions and commissions, as human nature would have it. To ensure that such anomalies are quickly addressed, the final post-verification process was duly instituted,” reads part of the press statement. 

On the document, it is stated that the production team that worked on graphics had to juggle between the original judges list and the pre-verified one, resulting in few human errors which were immediately picked up by the panel of  judges, and as prescribed by the processes, they activated the post-verification process.

After the unveiling of the nominees last Saturday, two artists requested to withdraw from the dog-eat-dog race, and since this request was made within seven days of announcement, MTN SWAMA panel of judges accepted it.
Now, taking these findings into consideration, MTN SWAMA panel of judges which remains anonymous – for impartiality purposes, resolved the following.

These resolutions are binding and are being applied with immediate effect:
l Artist King Terry, who had been erroneously included in the Male Artist of the Year category, is hereby being withdrawn from that particular category. The category requirement was an album released before May 30, 2018, and his missed the deadline. Perhaps the good side of the coin is that he qualifies for consideration in next year’s Awards.

l Artist Illa Penboy, who was in the pre-verified list of nominees, has been re-instated in the Male Artist of the Year category after verifying that he indeed has a valid album.

Remember, the category requirement is an album released within the stipulated time frame.
l Gospel artists Phathwakahle and Nduduzo Matse, who were in the pre-verified list but missed announcement under the Best Gospel Artist category, are hereby being retained in the post-verified list. This means that they are nominees under the Best Gospel Artist category, alongside those who were announced.

l Furthermore, for the same reasons, Phathwakahle has been re-instated in the Female Artist of the Year category.
l Country music duo Dusty and Stones have been removed from the Artist of the Year category, a category that requires the release of an album within the stipulated time frame. However, they remain nominated in the Best County category, and rightfully so as they had new singles out during the year under review.

l Finally, Miss Trophy (who was nominated in the Best RNB Category) and Haem-O (who was nominated in the Best Collaboration and Best Video categories) requested to forego this year’s nomination, and the judges have duly granted them that right. However, being the final post-verification process, this means that the grace period for withdrawal has now elapsed, hence no withdrawals, reviews, additions, will be accepted going forward.

The press document clearly states that as much as the MTN SWAMA Awards initiative is at its infancy, the post-verification process will always be instituted whenever the need arises in the next years to come so as to ensure that the Awards are  credible, transparent, and fair.

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