Artists from Nigeria and South Africa held sway over the third MTV Africa Music Awards, held Dec. 11 at the Eko Expo Hall in Lagos, Nigeria.
Known as the Mamas, the event saw Nigerian R&B artist 2Face -- who won Best African Act at the MTV Europe Awards in 2005 and the 2007 MOBO Awards -- adding to his growing haul by walking away with best male and artist of the year.
Also representing Nigeria was female hip-hop artist Sasha, who was named winner of the best female Mama; R&B duo P-Square took home best group. Another Nigerian female hip-hop artist Mo Cheddah added to the host country's five Mama wins by triumphing in the brand new act category on Saturday night.
Fally Ipupa -- the DRC-artist who features on the R. Kelly-produced One8 project song "Hands Across The World" (Sony) -- scored wins for best video ("Sexy Dance") and best Francophone act. Best Anglophone was won by Kenya's Gospel artist, Daddy Owen while Angolan vocalist Cabo Snoop Mamas became his country's first ever Mama award-winner when he was named best Lusophone act.
South African pop/dance duo Liquideep's No. 1 radio hit "Fairytale" won the song of the year Mama; Durban-based kwaito outfit Big Nuz took home the Mama for best performance -- a new category.
The late South African singer Miriam Makeba was named the 2010 Mama Legend in a tribute presented by Public Enemy's Chuck D. The U.S. hip-hop band followed four performances in South Africa a week ago with a live appearance at the Mamas, alongside several other international acts, including Rick Ross and T-Pain with rapper Eve hosting the show. Eminem won the only non-African category at the Mamas -- best international act. The rap star accepted the award via satellite from the USA.
Other live performances were courtesy of 2Face, Banky W (Nigeria), Barbara Kanam (DRC), Big Nuz, Cabo Snoop, Daddy Owen (Kenya), Diamond (Tanzania), Eve, Fally Ipupa, J. Martins (Nigeria), Jozi (South Africa), Liquideep, Lizha James (Mozambique), Mo Cheddah, Paul G (Angola), P-Unit, Radio & Weasel (Uganda), Sarkodie (Ghana), Sasha, Teargas (South Africa), The Parlotones (South Africa) and Wande Coal (Nigeria).
Mobile operator Airtel Africa sponsored the Mamas. The company's chief marketing officer Andre Beyers said in a statement, "Music is an important way to connect with Africa as we re-launch the Airtel brand on the continent. It will support Airtel's mission of giving the youth a means to express themselves and the freedom to do more."
The MTV Africa Music Awards with Airtel premieres on MTV base on the SA-based DSTV satellite bouquet on Dec. 18. It will also be carried by terrestrial TV partners STV (Nigeria), AIT (Nigeria), TV3 (Ghana), WBS (Uganda), NTV (Kenya), TBC (Tanzania), Clouds TV (Tanzania), RTGA (DRC), NBC (Namibia), STV (Cameroon), Canal2 (Cameroon), Afrique Media (Cameroon), Go Africa (Gabon), TV Canal 3 (Burkina Faso), NTV (Benin), LC2 (Benin), ORTN (Niger), MBC (Mauritius) and ZNBC (Zambia).