There comes a moment in a man’s life when he is 100% convinced that his chosen career is one that he has been irrevocably bound to by the chains of destiny - For the founder of the Nigerian Broadcasters Merit Awards (NBMA), Kazeem Popoola, the 2012 edition of the event encapsulated that moment.
The exquisite hall within NECA HOUSE situated within the Alausa district in Ikeja, Lagos played host to the event and of course, it was a night with memories that would outlive all who attended the event especially those who returned home with plaques; a monument of honour and prestige from the event.
Of course, there was no way the venue could be packed full to the brim. It was a Sunday and I recall leaving the venue an hour before midnight; even when I knew I had less than five hours of sleep left for the night. Majority of those who waited as long I did at the event were either still hopeful of winning a plaque or just strangely decided to see the event till the very end.
There were a lot of winners indeed and the smile on their faces as well as their tight grip on the plaques in their hands told the entire story without using words.
Some of the winners include IK Osakioduwa of Rhythm 93.7 (formerly known as Wildchild), Uti Nwachukwu, Yvonne ‘Vickson’ Ekwere, Charles Anazodo of Supersport, City People, OPJ of Wazobia FM, Omotunde Lolo 1 of Wazobia FM, DJ Caise of Beat FM, Football 360 Degrees, Channel O, Nigezie, Ariyike Akinbobola of Spice OnTV, MTN Family Game Show, Oladotun Ojuolape Kayode, Chisom Mbonu, Yeancah Adamu, Frank Edohor, Startimes, Tinsel, Una Wake Up with yaw, Wetin Dey, Radio Lagos, Teju Babyface and so many others.
Bearing in mind that nominees can only win once in three years, the event certainly hit a vibrant note on the sheets of credibility as this explained why the names of some popular On-Air-Personalities, TV and radio programmes were missing from this year’s list of nominees.
The online voting system, research and agency report used in determining the winners this year further strengthened the event’s wall of integrity.
Another remarkable spot on the event’s score sheet was the fusion of Freeze, Yeahcah and Toni Payne as hosts for the event – Flanked by two gorgeous women, Freeze kept the audience on their toes with his suave performance and the freshness of his entertaining gimmicks.
A sizeable number of young artistes, comedian and ‘Semiloge Couture’ filled in some of the blank spots with the fashion parade and performances.
Treading cautiously, I would implore Nigerian celebrities to put some effort in getting familiar with Nigerian electronic media establishments and On-Air-Personalities. If someone like General Pype had taken cognisance of this, perhaps, he wouldn’t have mounted the stage, grabbed the microphone and embarrassingly announced ‘James Bond FM’ as a nominee instead of ‘Bond FM.’
It was also impressive to see that the event had shed the garb of a club gig with which it was originally conceived in 2008 to embrace a more formal shade to recognise and honour more personalities and platforms on the Nigerian electronic media terrain.
In all, the bar was raised and a thumbs up for the brains behind the event as we keep an eye on the next edition of the show as well as the initiator’s latest baby, ‘Airwaves Watch’ as it gradually gains momentum.
By Samod Biobaku