The Chief Executive Officer of the Gambia’s annual Wah Sa Halat Music Awards (WMA), Ya Sally Njie, has said the Wah Sah Halat music awards are open to all, regardless of gender.
“The award is not for Sister Njie but for everyone,” she said. “It is built for Gambian music,” Njie told TAT in an exclusive where the music lover outlines the challenges women artists face to win prestigious awards in the male-dominated industry.
“All venues, studios, video directors, and recording studios are unisex. It’s harder for women considering our cultural background and everything. As a woman, you are always expected to put in extra work and effort in everything you do,” says the WMA CEO.
“But the bottom line is, where you have to prove yourself or show yourself, if Awa Gambia can do it, everybody else can do it. So put in the work and push.” She added.
Njie also underscored her platform’s challenges regarding sponsorship in staging the awards.
“It is the sixth edition this year, and sponsors are still lacking behind. After six years, it has been successful, but still, nobody reaches out first. It’s always us reaching out to them.” Njie revealed.
The night of the national music award returned last weekend after a two-year hiatus due to the covid-19 pandemic.
The award night’s variety of winners includes new Afro-Balakh sensation Abdoulie Gaye alias “Attack,” who clinched the big moment by winning all four categories he was nominated for, including the people’s choice and artiste of the year awards.
Basse-born artiste A2 D Fulani also took home the Reggae Dancehall Artist of The Year for the second time alongside Nyancho, Kombonka, Hussain Dada, Uchee, and UK-based Pa Salieu, who all won their respective award categories, capping off a year of momentous breakthroughs in the Gambia’s music industry.