SAMA28 withdraws Best Contemporary Faith Album award

The Recording Industry of South Africa (RiSA) has withdrawn the SAMA Best Contemporary Faith Album award presented to Pulane Maphari for Sacrificial Worship (Live) at last month’s SAMA28.

It has come to the attention of the office that Maphari repackaged, renamed and paraded an album she released in 2020 as a new body of work and submitted it for 2021 consideration with the same tracklisting.

This is in clear violation of the rules of the SAMA and equals an automatic disqualification. Under General Rules: Eligibility for Entry clause 5.1 states that an album must contain not less than four (4) tracks of previously unreleased recorded performances (Remixes are excluded). Clause 5.2 says 50% of the album must feature different and previously unreleased sound recordings by the artist or group entered (in other words, no re-released albums or “best of” or “greatest hits” compilations and the like).

In light of these developments and based on the SAMA rules, the new SAMA28 Best Contemporary Faith Album winner is Kingdmusic for Denga who received the second highest scores in that category, as confirmed by the auditors, PwC.

As a consequence, Nhlanhla Sibisi, RiSA CEO has suspended the SAMA project team and instituted internal disciplinary processes.

Furthermore, the artist is disqualified and further investigations are underway to determine whether further action is needs to be taken.

Sibisi commented: “The integrity of the SAMA is of the utmost importance. We take seriously any complaint we receive regarding how the winners are chosen and the conduct of our office and the panel of judges. We are looking at a total overhaul of the SAMA structure, systems and processes. The SAMAs must be artist driven and focused.”

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