The SAFTAs are upon us this weekend and to mark the occasion we delved into the details of how the voting works, which we featured here
We've also been investigating why Muvhango is nowhere to be seen. It's one of the Top 3 shows in the country yet it's notably missing from the soapie categories including the viewer voting category of Most Popular Soapie
The reason for its absence is that the show didn't enter the awards. We asked them why and Associate Producer Morishe Matlejoane gave us this statement on behalf the show:
The Muvhango team has taken a decision to sit out of the SAFTA awards indefinitely until a marked improvement is noted in the category nominations and selection process of judges.
In any contest where judges are selected ‘within' the system and not independently set to be true independent critics, there will always be room to question. For a number of years there has been growing scepticism around the processes followed by the organisers.
On the grounds alone that the Awards are not independently run to fully encompass every broadcaster to give a true reflection of the South African TV landscape, is enough reason to give it a pass until that’s adjusted to a fair position for everyone who forms part of our industry.
There are people working alongside those who are nominated, people working for rival production companies which all leads to major credibility issues.
Just reflecting on the years passed that Muvhango has entered in every possible category in the soapies division for the SAFTAs, it’s been incredibly disappointing to see very little acknowledgement, if any, awarded to our hard-working team.
It’s not by accident that Muvhango has moved from strides of hitting just over a million viewers to souring heights of five million plus in the close to two decades of running successfully. Growing to a 5 day soapie through the years just based on its running success and in the last season alone, comfortably sitting in the top 3, most watched soapies in the country.
We’re not opposed to being placed under the microscope and criticism of our peers in the industry nor being set against them. With every production that is submitted, evaluated, scored and either selected for nomination or not, there is always spaced set for a marked improvement and we are no exception but what is the benchmark set against?
Surely there should be acknowledgement set aside based on the success of a production? Within the facts surrounding the success of any production, lies the truth of what quality is. Telling resonating stories that live on for years and grows viewers in numbers and boasts societal impact is worth a mention.
So until a solid and fair approach is taken on in the selection process, we just think it’s unjustifiable to place our incredible cast and crew ensemble under the scrutiny of a system that is arguably standardised.