Nigerian popstar Wizkid continued his fine end of year run with yet another award, this time at the 2016 All Africa Music Awards which was held on Sunday 6 November in Lagos, Nigeria. But the night's biggest winner was Tanzania's Diamond Platnumz.
The ceremony also saw Nigerian King Sunny Ade honoured with a Special Recognition Award and tributes from artists such as Diamond Platnumz, Brymo and Aramide. The juju music legend was one of two artists so recognised, the other being Papa Wemba, the late Congolese musician who died in April this year during a concert.
The night of the award ceremony featured a variety of performances—in style and substance—from some of the continents finest acts, including the Soweto Gospel Choir, Seyi Shay, Dare Art-Alade, and Phyno.
Big winners of the night include last year's big winner Diamond Platnumz (Tanzania) who won three awards including Song of the Year for 'Utanipenda' and Best Artiste in African Pop. Wizkid was named Artist of the Year, while Aramide’s win for the best female act in West Africa was perhaps the night’s biggest upset.
Other winners include collaborators Eddy Kenzo and Niniola, as well as BET winner Black Coffee who was named Best Male in Southern Africa. The performance given by Black Coffee's four-year old compatriot and colleague, DJ Arch Jnr, provided one of the night's highlight.
The awards, backed by the African Union, had in attendance dignitaries such as the Nigerian Minister for Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, and the Governor of Lagos state, Akinwumi Ambode, among its distinguished guests. As with its other editions, the pan-African nature of the award involved attempts at showcasing a wide range of artists from the continent causing both a long list of winners and a five-hour ceremony.
The award ceremony was preceded by well-attended industry talks and an all-night concert on Friday 5 November tagged AFRIMA Music Village at the Bar Beach Water front. In spite of organisational failings, the ceremony demonstrated its organisers' vision of becoming the foremost music award on the continent.
Full list of winners below.