Police question 2 Ghana music stars over brawl at award event

Shatta Wale and Stoneboy
Two Ghana music super stars, Shatta Wale(l) and Stoneboy

Two rival dancehall musicians have been questioned by police in the Ghanaian capital, Accra, following a brawl during the country’s music awards. 

At a ceremony on Saturday night, which was witnessed by a large television audience, Stonebwoy had just been announced as the winner of the reggae and dancehall artist of the year. 

Rival musician Shatta Wale and his fans stormed the stage, starting a fight. 

People were shocked to see Stonebwoy holding a gun to defend himself. 

Such a scene is extremely rare in Ghana. 

Police are also reported to have arrested one person for using pepper spray during the brawl.

The two men have huge followings who regularly exchange insults over who is the best artist.

There were no major injuries and after a short delay the Vodafone Ghana Music Awards in the capital, Accra, resumed.

During the acceptance speech for another award, Stonebwoy apologised, Ghana news site Joy Online reports.

“I only had to react out of natural instincts because we all know how premeditative some people can be. We’ve seen on social media the threats and everything so we couldn’t come in unprepared,” he reportedly said.

“I come in peace and I go in peace and I apologise to the whole masses of Ghana that the awards is going to continue.”

In Ghana all guns have to be registered and licensed for a specific use, such as personal protection.

Later on Twitter, he thanked the police for calming things down.

“My crew had good intentions” in going up on stage, Shatta Wale is quoted as saying by the GhanaWeb news site.

He said he wanted to congratulate Stonebwoy on winning the award and bring unity to the music world.

On Twitter, Shatta Wale said: “Don’t play with a lion like that.”

This was the fifth year in a row that Stonebwoy took the best dancehall reggae artist title.

The brawl marred what should have been a night to celebrate Ghanaian music.

Before the ceremony, President Nana Akufo-Addo said that the “excitement generated by [the awards] is testimony to the amazing talent that we have in the creative arts industry”.

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