Lesley Mofokeng, the Communications Manager for the Recording Industry of South Africa (RiSA) and the spokesperson for the South African Music Awards (SAMAs), has responded to singer Kelly Khumalo’s recent allegations.
During the awards ceremony held at the SunBet Arena in Pretoria, Kelly Khumalo claimed that the Samas were rigged. She targeted gospel musician Ntokozo, who won the Female Artist of the Year award.
“She knows she doesn’t deserve it. Numbers don’t lie… Even Ntokozo knows that numbers don’t lie! We are not scared of her. Fuseg Samas,” Kelly vented.
Despite facing criticism, Kelly stood by her statements, expressing no regrets and affirming the sincerity of her words. Also, in a video shared on social media, she laughed off the events of the previous night. She asserts that she and those important to her, including Jesus and her ancestors, are indifferent to the situation.
“Beningaluthathi ngani ucingo?[Why didn’t you guys take my phone away from me?] 😂😂😂 I said what I said bye.
“I said what I said and take nothing back!”
SAMAs Addresses Kelly Khumalo
Addressing Kelly’s accusations, Mofokeng dismissed them. He stated that the metrics for the awards are not solely based on factors like radio play, popularity, or social media following.
“If anyone at all has proof to substantiate the claim that the SAMAs are rigged they should come forward so we can investigate. Our systems have proven to have integrity and we use the best in the industry and we stand by those results. We don’t look at radio play, we don’t look at airtime, popularity, fame, and the following. All we consider is the body that you present in front of us,” he said.
Furthermore, he congratulated Ntokozo Mbambo on her victories.
“For the record, the SAMA would like to state that we celebrate the wins of Ntokozo Mbambo, and we are very proud of her achievements and we are very encouraged by the support we saw playing out on social media.”