South Africa’s leading awards ceremony dedicated purely to hip-hop, the South African Hip-Hop Awards (SAHHA) took place on Wednesday 9 December at Gold Reef City in Johannesburg under the theme ‘African By Nature’.
As was suggested by the recent nominations, the ceremony was set to become a showdown between two men: Riky Rick and AKA, who indeed emerged as the main winners of the night. Rick, who led with seven nominations, bagged the coveted trophies for Album of the Year (for Family Values) as well as Best Male.
AKA, meanwhile, nominated in six categories, picked up more trophies but in lesser categories. The metal-mouthed rapper won Most Valuable and Best Digital Sales, while his feature on Anatii’s ‘The Saga’ won Best Collabo and Best Video. AKA also earned a special Milestone Award for notching up three Gold singles and a Gold album.
Some of the shine of AKA's Milestone Award might have been removed by the fact that his arch-rival Cassper Nyovest also earned one - for platinum sales of his debut album Tsholofelo. In response to critics who felt that awarding the prize to both rivals was something of a cop-out, the SAHHA organisers responded on Twitter: “The Milestone Award is not shareable - each individual was recognised for milestones they have respectively achieved”.
That was the only silverware on the night for Nyovest, who had been nominated in four categories and was recently adjudged the country’s top rapper in an annual poll by MTV Base, edging out AKA (ranked 2), Riky Rick (4), as well as KO (3), who due to an ongoing beef with the SAHHA organisers was not even nominated.
Other winners on the night included Proverb (Hustler of the Year) and Tumi (Lyricist of the Year), despite both missing out on MTV Base’s Top 10. Song of the Year went to Emtee’s ‘Roll Up’, beating out competition from the usual suspects as well as Khuli Chana and L-Tido.
The full list of 2015 SAHHA winners is as follows:
- Honorary Award: DJ Ready D
- Most Valuable: AKA
- Best Local Brand: Butan
- Best International Brand: Red Bull
- Best Dance Crew: Supreme I Crew
- Promoter of the Year: Pop Bottles
- DJ Of The Year: Major League DJz
- Album of the Year: Riky Rick - Family Values
- Best Freshman: Nasty C - Price City
- Mixtape of the Year: Okmalumkoolkat
- Hustler of the Year: Proverb
- Lyricist of the Year: Tumi
- Best Graffiti: Mars
- Producer of the Year: Tweezy
- Best Collabo: Anatii ft. AKA – ‘The Saga’
- Best Female: Assessa - Yim Lo
- Best Male: Riky Rick - Family Values
- Best Hip Hop Radio Show: Venrap Radio
- Best Video: Anatii ft. AKA – ‘The Saga’
- Song Of The Year: Emtee – ‘Roll Up’
- Best Digital Sales: AKA
- Milestone: AKA (3 Gold Singles and a Gold Album) & Cassper Nyovest (Platinum Album)
- King of Northern Cape: Kgomotso Modiragale
- King of Eastern Cape: Lungelo ‘Trusenz’ Nzama
- King of KwaZulu-Natal: Lindo ‘Prowjekt’ Thwala
- King of Free State: Dithato Mogoiwa
- King of Mpumalanga: Ecks Exodus Nkosingiphile
- King of North West: Dj Lemonka
- King of Western Cape: Zanzolo Uzwi Kantu
- King of Limpopo: Nema Wama Hunghuni
- King of Gauteng: Refiloe Ramogase