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MBABANE – Members of the public have until this Friday to nominate their favourite personalities at the second annual Swazi Boy Social Media Awards (SMAs).

This was disclosed by the entertainment stable’s Communications Officer Ur Gal Zee in an interview with this publication. Last year, there were 45 categories but this year’s awards ceremony will be bigger and better as five more categories have been added. These include Agriculture Personality of the Year, Medical Personality of the Year, Entrepreneur of the Year, Best tv Show, Best Radio Show and Most Popular Football Club. Asked on what purported this, Ur Gal Zee said: “ We saw a gap and a need for them because we definitely have a number of people who are deserving in each of the categories.  Also, when the categories came out last year leading to the event, we received a great number of people suggesting that we include more categories, in particular these we’ve just added. The social media awards are for the people so we definitely listen when they speak, after all, this is for them.”

She went on to add that they were also working on a national tour to sensitise about SMA and mainly to do an educational programme about social media  and its advantages. There will also be mini-awards for people to nominate and vote for their local personalities who will get in the top 10 national awards. The aim is to work with the young people of Eswatini from every sphere of our beautiful kingdom. “It is our duty to inspire the young, especially the disadvantaged people to dream bigger by providing them with opportunities with the cellphones they have in their hands. Through the SMA, we can inspire a young person to dream big in such a way that some of them can be influencers for big corporates in the kingdom. “Our mini workshop will bring and shed light on a few ideas on how to go about being a social media influencer or being spotted by talent agencies within or out of the country. This will also make people appreciate the stars that live in their towns and this in turn can make them thrive in the different fields,”  she said.

Bridging the gap

Zee further said, “Last year when we hosted the awards, our demographics showed us that the youth that participated in the awards were mostly from the Manzini-Mbabane corridor. The gap between urban and rural areas was very evident, so this year we intend to bridge the gap and have this nationally. We feel that the youth outside of the Manzini-Mbabane corridor are left out, so we need to include them in the social media space. The education on special media advantages and disadvantages is key for the youth to make informed decisions and to take advantage of the opportunities on social media space.” For this stage of voting, only 10 nominees will qualify for the next phase and this can be done through voting on various Swazi Boy social media pages on Facebook and Instagram. A picture of a nominee will be posted on these pages and people will vote by liking which will equate to a vote.

Eventually, the winner will be the one who has the most votes as members of the public would have voted via SMS at this stage. From here on, five people with the most votes will qualify for the final voting stages from each category and the voting period will then last for a period of four weeks thereafter.

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