Will Epixode be able to subdue the threat of Stonebwoy after his return in 23rd VGMA?
Reggae/Dancehall artiste Livingstone Etse Satekla known in showbiz circles as Stonebwoy has finally made it to the 23rd nominee lists after organisers of the Vodafone Ghana Music awards lifted the temporary ban on him and Shatta Wale in 2021.
It could be recalled that Stonebwoy and Shatta Wale engaged in an altercation which the former brandished a gun and nearly marred the entertainment night of awards in 2019.
In the new list released by Charter house on Saturday during the nominee launch, the prodigal musician who made it to the Reggae/Dancehall Song and Reggae/Dancehall artiste of the year category with his two hit songs ‘1Gad’ and ‘Greedy Men’ would log horns with dancehall prodigy Samini, KiDi, Larusso and 2021 Reggae/Dancehall artiste of the year Epixode.
Epixode in 2021 had it on the silver platter since the two Reggae/Dancehall giants, Stonebwoy and Shatta Wale were missing in the list.
For the past five years, the Raggae/Dancehall artiste of the year had been very competitive since there were lots of controversies around it which makes the converted award even bigger than the artiste of the year for the SM Millitants and the Bhimnation fans.
Stonebwoy being nominated for the Reggae/Dancehall Artiste of the Year award meant that Epixode who is with low fanbase had to topple up his game in order to subdue the Bhimnation boss.
For the first time in the then 20-year history of the Ghana Music Awards, organisers failed to announce the winner of the ‘Artiste of the Year’ category due to the brawl in the 2019 edition.
During a press conference, the organisers stated that the two artistes breached the code of conduct of the scheme.
Mark Okraku-Mantey, who was a member of the Board, at the time, explained that the Board has the right to dismiss or disqualify any nominee who misbehaves or brings the Awards into disrepute.
The former rivals were also stripped of the awards they won on the night and asked to return the plaques they were given.
In 2020, Charterhouse organisers of the award scheme enforced the ban placed on Shatta Wale and Stonebwoy.
The duo did not make it in that years’ nominees list and all the works they featured on also did not make it to the list.
But in 2021, the Board decided to lift the ban.
In a statement released by the Board of the VGMA, they noted that although lifting the ban made Shatta Wale and Stonebwoy eligible to participate in the event, the two opted not to join the competition that year.
Stonebwoy revealed that this decision was taken without any prior consultation with either of them, casting doubt on the true purpose of the VGMA as an award scheme.
Meanwhile, Shatta Wale is yet to make to the list, however the camp of Stonebwoy stated that an official announcement would be made in due course on why Stonebwoy had made a return in this year’s list.