Title sponsor of the Ghana Music Awards, Vodafone, has said it will continue supporting the music industry despite a scuffle between two rival artistes on Saturday.
The telco giant said in a statement Sunday that although the scuffle that ensued on stage is regrettable, it acknowledges that a large number of players in the industry do not subscribe to such conduct.
“For now, our passion for music and for the industry remains solid. We look forward to an exciting future for the industry,” Vodafone Ghana said in the release.
The telecoms company did not, however, state expressly its continued support for the annual Ghana Music Awards organised by Charterhouse.
Rival reggae and dancehall artistes, Stonebwoy and Shatta Wale, were on Sunday invited by the police over the violent commotion at the 20th edition of the Vodafone Ghana Music Awards (VGMAs).
Camps of the two rival artistes clashed on stage while Stonebwoy was about to give a speech after winning the coveted Reggae/Dancehall Artiste of the Year at the music awards last night.
The brawl started when Shatta Wale (Charles Nii Armah Mensah) walked up to the stage with his multitude of fans while Stonebwoy was about to give a speech for the award.
Although some have said the My Level hitmaker climbed up the stage with his fans to congratulate Stonebwoy for the award, others say they were there to heckle Stonebwoy.
The confusion that ensued was witnessed by millions of Ghanaians watching the show.
Stonebwoy, known in private life as Livingstone Etse Satekla, also pulled a gun on stage in what some believe he did in self-defence.
Many patrons at the event at the Accra International Conference Centre feared the sight of the gun could have caused a stampede.
One person has been arrested on suspicion of using a dangerous pepper spray during the brawl.
Following the incident, there were fears corporate Ghana would be pushed further away from supporting showbiz.
Photo: Stonebwoy (L) and Shatta Wale
Vodafone Ghana in the release further stated that, as a responsible organisation, it is against all acts of violence no matter the circumstances.
“We will support any review process of the incident to ensure that our commitment to recognise and celebrate achievement and success in the music industry is not compromised,” the statement said.
Meanwhile, the event organisers have also condemned the brawl.
In a statement published below Charterhouse apologised to Vodafone Ghana and other sponsors for the incident.
“Being a special edition of the annual ceremony, months of planning had gone into the giving the world a breath-taking. Sadly, however, we were unable to give the full experience we had hoped to give as a result of this breach,” the statement from Charterhouse said.
Read the full statement below.