AFRO-JAZZ ace Majahawodwa Ndlovu, aka Jeys Marabini, has urged the National Arts Council of Zimbabwe (NACZ) to reach out to artistes and not rely on the media to vet the performance of artistes as some journalists were known to be biased towards certain musicians and entertainers.
His sentiments follow an outburst on social network where he appeared to launch a polemic against journalists from the northern side of the country accusing them of portraying him in bad taste.
In his widely followed post on Facebook shared last week Jeys, who lost out of the 13th edition of the National Art Merit Award (Nama) after he was nominated for the best male musician award, charged he deserved to be nominated for the coveted award because of his hard work.
The enraged jazz star took a swipe at scribes and accused them of failing to follow current arts affairs saying they even failed to give him coverage when he did duties as a National Traffic Safety ambassador.
Interestingly, the much-travelled star from Bulawayo revealed in his post that he did not submit entries for the Nama, but was shortlisted because the organisers felt he deserved so.
Quizzed why he was hand-picked without prior application during Eziko Theatre Laboratory session last Friday under the theme “Nama and Us: How Can We Improve to Achieve”, the marabi star said artistes who excelled deserved nomination even without applying urging organisers to reach out to artistes at their respective areas of operations.
“Even though I was nominated without submitting entries for Nama I feel that is what should happen to every artiste,” Jeys argued in an interview on the side-lines of Eziko session.
“Some artistes are left out although they deserve to be nominated. NACZ officials must reach out to artistes so that the nominations are done transparently and fairly.
“I know they rely on radio, television and newspapers, but I feel that is not enough because the media is likely to be biased by giving coverage to artistes
from other constituencies at the expense of others,” Marabini added.
He also said he felt there was need for organisers of the arts awards to add more categories in the next editions of the fiesta so that various works in arts get recognition.
NACZ officials were not immediately available to comment, but since the awards held in Bulawayo three weeks ago, they have come under a barrage of attacks for allegedly sidelining artistes and musicians from Matabeleland.