After close to three months, Rwandan music competition Primus Guma Guma Super Star (PGGSS) came to an end on Saturday 13 August, when the popular trio Urban Boyz bagged the grand prize of 24 million Rwandan Francs (around US$30 000).
The trio - made up of Safi ‘Madiba’ Niyibikora, James Manzi and Muhammad ‘NizzoKaboss’ Nshimiyimana - was crowned at the Amahoro National Stadium, where the finale took place.
Urban Boyz beat nine other hopefuls to emerge as winners. Coming in second position was R&B singer Christopher Muneza, while Bruce Melodie emerged third. They walked away with Rwf 7.5 million (about $9445) and Rwf 7 million (about $8815) respectively.
Urban Boyz first emerged on the Rwandan music scene in 2007. They released their debut album Icyicaro (today) in 2008. In 2012 they bagged five awards at Rwanda's Salax awards. This was there second attempt at the PGGSS competition, after first participating in 2013.
While Bruce Melodie was deemed to have a better stage presence, it appears that his comparative lack of a large fan following worked against him in this contest. While the official scoresheets showed that Melodie was highly ranked by the judges, Urban Boyz were able to beat him because they received more support from the public. This will no doubt be a disapointment to Melodie, who in 2015 was a second runner-up to winner Knowless Butera.
The 2016 edition of the PGGSS contest saw the contestants travel throughout Rwanda to reach out to new fans and win votes from the public. Unlike in previous years, when they took part in 17 live shows, this year's contestants took part in eight shows.