Mobile Telecommunications giant (MTC) will for the last time be in charge of the prestigious Namibian Annual Music Awards (NAMAs) ceremony in May this year after having successfully taken charge of this musical project for 10 consecutive years.

But the future of the NAMAs beyond 2020 has not been mapped out, so that indicators point to the abrupt end of this important project which has helped raise the standard of Namibian music.

While MTC indicated in November 2019 that it will withdraw its sponsorship and the role it played over the years in bringing the NAMAs to the Namibian public and the world at large, a clear explanation was not given as to why MTC was withdrawing.

Nor was anything said about who was expected to take over the NAMAs.

When contacted for clarity, MTC’s Corporate Communications Practitioner Mr Fikameni Mathias dismissed the assumptions that there will no longer be the NAMAs after 2020.

Mathias also dismissed the assertions that MTC has not satisfactorily informed the Namibian public about the way forward where the NAMAs are concerned.

“We are not aware of where Omutumwa has placed the bar in terms of what should be considered satisfactory and otherwise. From our end, the announcement was made public just like any other.

“Yes, we are exiting the NAMAs and it does not mean it is the end of the project which we also took over almost 10 years ago,” Mathias said.

“Come May 2020, we would have invested 10 years in the music industry, with an investment of over N$100 million. I am sure you will agree that we would proudly have made our contribution to the music industry and therefore now is time to move on and hand over this project to somebody else that will take it to the next level.

“In the last 9 years, we have achieved so much, including making the NAMAs the best national music award ceremony on the African continent and exposing our artists to over 50 million viewers.

“We wish to assure you and the public that MTC remains very interested in the music industry. The music industry presents so many opportunities and the NAMAs were just one of them.

“Other corporate companies who wish to take over this Rolls Royce called the NAMAs may approach us and we will do everything in our power to share all the information irrespective of who you are, including all intellectual property rights.”

Mathias further explained that MTC believes that it has done enough for the music industry, so that the company may now look at other sectors of the society where its corporate social investment may also be needed.

With the departure of MTC from the NAMAs it stands to be seen what the way forward will be for the industry which has over the years proved to be the fastest growing of all performing arts in Namibia.

The annual NAMAs musical showpiece has for the last ten years been organised and stage-managed by MTC in partnership with NBC after the awards ceremony was transformed from the Sanlam/NBC Music Awards.