Zahara dedicates awards to brother

DOUBLE HONOUR: Eastern Cape's Zahara. Picture: MARK ANDREWS
DOUBLE HONOUR: Eastern Cape’s Zahara. Picture: MARK ANDREWS

EASTERN Cape South African Music Award (Sama) winner Zahara has dedicated her latest awards to her late brother.

Zahara walked off with two awards on Monday night – Female Artist of the Year and Best Selling Album of the Year, both for her album Phendula.

Her brother, Mbuyiseli “Nana” Mkutukana, 25, and a friend, Thanduxolo Zumani, 36, were gunned down near their Eastern Cape village earlier this month.

Zahara did not attend the awards, held at Sun City, as she was home for Mkutukana’s funeral.

“The awards were dedicated to my brother. I am very happy but unfortunately I could not enjoy the moment. I would love to thank everyone who supported me and also the ones who bought the album,” Zahara said.

The other Eastern Cape winners were Port Elizabeth’s Zonke Dikana (Best Live DVD), J-Something, the Mi Casa member who grew up in Port Alfred (Best Dance Album), Xhosa rapper Ifani of Mthatha (Best Rap Album) and Alice-born singer Nakhane Toure (Best Alternative Album).

Zonke said she was very glad that she had won, and J-Something thanked those who had supported them.

“We are blessed to have a family like all of you,” he said.

Xhosa rapper Ifani’s win made up for his lack of success at the Metro FM Awards earlier this month.

“It’s overwhelming, every time I think about it I just don’t know what to do or say. Even when I got the award I was shocked,” he said.

Ifani said the award not only confirmed that the music industry had embraced him but he was now one of the best. “I have joined the top class now, I have been upgraded to business class,” he joked.

He was also nominated for the Best Newcomer category, which eventually went to KwaZulu-Natal artist Naima K.

Ifani said he would focus this year on getting his debut album known across the country. “I try to push the bar and that’s what I am doing with my project. There has only been one rap album that went platinum and only five that went gold, and now it is important that my album gets to gold.” – Yoliswa Sobuwa and Poliswa Plaatjie

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