Burna Boy now the brightest star in African music

Burna Boy performs at SSE Arena Wembley on November 3, 2019 in London, England.
Burna Boy performs at SSE Arena Wembley on November 3, 2019 in London, England.
Image: Joseph Okpako/WireImage

Nigerian Afrofusion maestro Burna Boy is the biggest star in Africa right now.

He beat the likes of South Africans Nasty C and Prince Kaybee to be named Best African Act at the MTV Europe Music Awards last night in Seville, Spain.

Another Nigerian Teni, Tanzanian star Harmonize and Kenyan music duo TooFan were also nominated in the highly coveted category.

Burna Boy was one of the high-profile stars that were not in attendance - including Nicki Minaj, Billie Eilish, FKA Twigs, Sam Mendes and Taylor Swift - to accept their awards in person.

He was performing at Wembley in London on the night.

Last year the same award for Africa was won by Nigerian songbird Tiwa Savage, making her the first woman to win.

Past winners include D’banj (2012), Locnville (2013), Diamond Platnumz (2015) and Davido (2017). D'banj and Davido are Nigerian music superstars while Locnville are a South African duo doing well internationally. Diamond Platnumz is a prolific Tanzanian hitmaker.

“African music continues to make significant contributions to global entertainment and culture,” Alex Okosi, executive vice-president and managing director for Viacom International Media Networks Africa (VIMN Africa) and BET International.

“We are proud of and congratulate Burna Boy from Nigeria for winning the Best African Act at the 2019 MTV EMA which showcases and celebrates the best talent from the world.”

South Africa was represented by bombshell Boity Thulo who rocked the red carpet alongside A-listers Akon, Terry Crews, Nicole Scherzinger, and Niall Horan.

Other big winners includes Nicki Minaj for Best Hip Hop, Halsey for Best Pop, Green Day for Best Rock and FKA Twigs for Best Alternative.

Hosted by Becky G, the awards had electric performance from Ava Max, Dua Lipa, NCT 127 and Mabel.

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