By Kampala Sun writer
He cut his teeth as a photo-journalist with Vision Group’s Kampala Sun newspaper. Over the years, the budding musician turned multi-media journalist, Musa Ssemwanga Keiz, is on the cusp of reaping from his passion for music.
The radio and television host has been nominated for the Janzi Music Journalist Award 2021. He is up for the award with NMG’s Isaac Sejjombwe and Metro FM,’s Herbie Kay.
Although peers know him for showing a laidback demeanor, often punctuating each compliment with the “Easy” retort, he has set his eyes on this maiden title in his budding career.
Asked about his competition in the category, a witty Ssemwanga referred us to the just concluded ‘Ballon D’or football awards where Lionel Messi left many grumbling after he won the 7th award. “This is about Messi and others,” he jested.
Upon recollection of his thoughts, Ssemwanga revealed it is a strong shortlist and all those shortlisted are befitting. He however relearns that he has an upper edge owing to the fact that Vision Group has given him the platform to work on radio, television and print and online. That way, he has been able to impact many people musically.
Ssemwanga is part of the hundreds lined up for the maiden awards. Last week, a total of 300 nominees unveiled as the final list in the first ever Janzi Awards during a star-studded event in the Sheraton Hotel gardens.
Speaking about the function, the chairperson for Janzi Award organizing committee, Sylivia Owori said they had received over 75000 entries before reducing it down to 300.She noted that the awards are meant to celebrate the creative industry and the role it plays in creating employment as well as its contribution to the economy.
“These awards were born out of the Gulu arrangements (where musicians visited Gen Saleh) but are also a testament that government is ready to support this industry. Government has finally given us its ear,” she said.
Owori, the director of operations at Operation Wealth Creation explained that the creative arts industry is currently undergoing a revolution but urged the need for unity for all players.
“Let us stop fighting each other. The fact that the creative industry has gone to parliament is a big step forward.
This is part of the arts and culture revolution. With the Janzi Awards, we want more creative talents discovered and celebrated.
Let us unite the country through creative arts,”Owori said.
Members of the JAA will then review the nominees after the public vote is closed on December,5 and vote for the winners in all 96 categories.
The public vote constitutes 30% of the overall winner’s vote.
The award is given to performers, who, during their lifetimes, have made creative contributions of outstanding artistic significance in the domain of music and will rotate between the different domains annually
The winners of the 2021 Janzi Awards will be announced on December 11 and 12 at the Kololo Independence Grounds.