By: Poelano Malema
There is drama surrounding the Amapiano Awards that are scheduled to take place later this year.
According to several publications, DJ Qness – the man behind the South African Amapiano Awards (SAAPA), is a thief!
He has been accused of stealing the concept for his awards ceremony from the Amapiano Awards.
According to Times Live, the legal representatives of the Amapiano Awards have sent a cease and desist letter to DJ Qness to not go ahead with his awards ceremony, as they allege that he stole the concept from their client.
Kevin Smith from Gani Mayet Attorneys told the publication that DJ Oness, real name Qhubani Ndlovu, started the South African Amapiano Awards after abandoning the Amapiano Awards.
“The Amapiano awards, being our client, [we have learnt that] a non-profit company was registered in 2019, and the following year in 2020 a foundation was instituted as well and registered,” he told the publication.
“DJ Qness abandoned the Amapiano Awards but that’s when he started the South African Amapiano Awards with the same concept plan that he was made aware of while he was part of the planning committee and that is why we’re taking legal action. Not only was he privy to the plan and the implementation strategy but also the foundation itself. He circumvented the Amapiano awards to start his own, after being made aware of it,” he added.
DJ Qness response
The recording artist and record producer says no one owns the Amapiano genre. He further refuted the claims that he stole his show’s concept from the Amapiano Awards.
“The Indian lady making these claims, does she own Amapiano? First, that’s cultural appropriation, trying to profit from young black people and using their talent for their personal enrichment. That’s what I’m seeing from where I’m standing,” he said.
“We requested them to provide substantiation and proof of their claims because their claims are defamatory to our organisation and to our cause. It’s been a week, they still have not sent that proof, they only sent us a cease and desist letter and a registration document for their company.” he added.
Awards to continue
The South African Amapiano Awards are scheduled to take place in October this year.
The ‘Game Of Love’ hitmaker says the awards ceremony will continue.
“We have never met [the people making the claims]. The Indian lady heard from a mutual friend that I was busy collecting research about doing an award show and heard about the work that I have done in the industry, and when I first spoke to her she was talking about doing a workshop and exposition … we never spoke about ideas or planned an award show, we never did logistical planning, we never even met. We spoke on WhatsApp about her workshop,” the DJ maintains.
Image courtesy of Instagram/ @DJqness