Award-winning artiste Shatta Wale is unlikely to be reconsidered for the Vodafone Ghana Music Awards (VGMA) after he defiantly suggested he would not apologise to anybody publicly, as was being demanded by events management outfit Charterhouse.
Moments after Charterhouse announced on Tuesday it had disqualified the self-acclaimed Dancehall King for publicly denigrating the awards, Shatta (real name Charles Nii Armah Jnr) went public on his Facebook page with a rhetorical question: “Why should I always apologise for the monster you have made me become when no one has ever apologised for making me this way”?
It was not clear who Shatta’s rant was directed to, but it was the first and clearest reaction to the VGMA snub, having personally presented his works to Charterhouse for consideration as part of a U-turn from his public spat and former antagonistic stance with the company.
In an interview, a member of Shatta’s management, Chris Koney, told Showbiz the team was yet to meet to consider their next line of action.
However, the reaction from his followers have been that of disappointment. In a year in which he dropped hit songs such as ‘Kakai’, ‘Mahama Paper’ and ‘Chop Kiss’, Shatta’s followers had high hopes that the artiste would be nominated in a number of categories despite previously declaring he did not want to be part of the VGMA.
Esther Bannor of the Ghana Education Service described the decision as “bias and unfair”. “ What are they saying?, are they telling us that Shatta Wale can’t win any award because he has a beef with Charter House, that’s so unfair.
“The guy worked hard and he deserves to be recognized. The awards scheme is about one’s works not character,” she said.
Her opinion was supported by Joseph Quarcoo, a self-acclaimed President of the Shatta Movement at Bubiashie. “Charterhouse is just using their awards to settle personal scores with Shatta Wale. Let me tell them that the SM family is for life and if they won’t award our icon for their own personal interests, then we the fans will also boycott VGMA forever. Our new slogan is “No Shatta, No VGMA”.
However, Yousif Osei, a new ‘convert’ who became a fan of Shatta Wale because of his love for his Kakai song said the artiste’s former posture was unacceptable.
“Well, I believe talent goes with character and as such, Shatta Wale can’t bite the same hands that feed him. I love him for his great talent but his character is questionable.
“I would have loved to see him grab many awards but since he has been disqualified, I can only hope for a better opportunity. He should just apologise and end this whole issue. It’s not in anyone’s interest especially we the fans,” he told Showbiz.
The decision, as announced by Theresa Ayoade, Executive Director of Charter House at a press briefing held on Tuesday at the World Trade Centre is to safeguard the integrity of the awards and to maintain the confidence the industry has reposed in it.
“After two years of publicly campaigning about not wanting to be included in the awards, and recording and posting of materials that tarnished and denigrated the image of the scheme, he has presented an entry for nomination.
“The board thinks it is the first step to redeeming himself from the denigration of the scheme,” she stated.
Theresa Ayoade was, however, quick to note that the board has no interest in suppressing the genuine concerns of interested parties but that she said, must be done with decorum and in a decent manner as such, “ Shatta Wale doesn’t qualify for this year’s awards unless he completes the process of officially apologising for maligning the VGMA Board”.
She also explained that the board’s decision was not to gag any artiste for misconduct but the decision was just to put in action existent terms and conditions that had been stipulated on all entry forms for artistes to adhere to.