Taking off the mask

Prince Chauke

Sgonondo is about to be unmasked.

The identity of the masked musician, a mystery even to his fellow top performers, will be revealed on Saturday.

The 999 stable will unmask Sgonondo at this year's MTN South African Music Awards (Samas).

Sgonondo claimed that he recorded his album in prison. But this was disputed by a section of the music industry.

This resulted in increased pressure, particularly from industry insiders, on the masked man to reveal his identity.

Many people believe that he is Jamela Vuma.

There have been rumours doing the rounds in the industry that Vuma will soon be joining rival stable Ghetto Ruff as a solo artist. But 999 boss Arthur Mafokate was unfazed about Vuma's supposed departure.

"The time has come to put the mystery of the identity of Sgonondo to rest. People will see the difference between Sgonondo and Jamela at the awards ceremony.

"If the rumours that Jamela wants to leave us are true, he is welcome to leave - but Sgonondo is here to stay. His life has been a subject of speculation and we believe that the Samas is the correct platform at which to reveal his identity," said Mafokate yesterday.

"To us it is not an issue whether he wins something or not on Saturday, but the identity issue [has to be sorted out]."

The controversial kwaito artist has been nominated for the award for the best kwaito album and for the song of the year for his offering Amadragon alongside Kabelo, L'vovo Derango, Thebe and Trompies.

The awards will be at Sun City on Saturday and will be broadcast on SABC1.