South African actor Bubu Mazubuko, best best known for her starring role as Thuli in the TV series Gaz'lam, has been nominated for the Africa Magic Viewers’ Choice Awards Best Actress prize for her part in the local movie Man on Ground.

Created to celebrate African film and television talent, both in front of and behind the cameras, the Africa Magic Viewers' Choice Awards features special categories where viewers can directly decide the winners, as well as professionally judged categories.

There are 28 awards in 26 categories, ranging from acting and directing to scriptwriting and cinematography. Other fields include editing, make-up, sound, lighting and costuming. The awards also feature two categories set to create a buzz: the Industry Merit Award and the Trailblazer of the Year Award.

Africa Magic Viewers' Choice Awards will take place at two separate events in March 2013 in Lagos, Nigeria. The first event will be dedicated to standout technical accomplishments while the main event will be a glamorous gala night.

Both events will be screened to DStv audiences across Africa, with the gala screened live.

To ensure that the awards are transparent, fair and credible, Africa Magic has recruited respected industry veteran Femi Odugbemi, as executive judge. All the awards will be verified by an independent auditing company.

Africa Magic managing director Biola Alabi says the awards are opportunity to build a pan-African event both relevant to industry professionals and vastly entertaining to fans. “It has been part of our plan to create a specific event that honours, celebrates and recognises those people who are giving so much of their talent and creativity to ensuring the popularity and evolution of African film and TV,” she says. “And to do this in partnership with MultiChoice illustrates the level to which both companies value this industry and are willing to invest in its future.

“Following the successful launch earlier this year of an expanded line-up of Africa Magic channels, we are now totally focused on these Awards. We are aiming to create a platform that showcases and supports the film and television community, while simultaneously entertaining and engaging viewers.

“While we are aware that there are challenges ahead we are committed to the success of this initiative as we truly believe it will contribute positively to the efforts of filmmakers from Lagos to Nairobi, Lusaka to Kampala and all across Africa.”

CEO of MultiChoice Africa Nico Meyer says: “Over the last 20 years MultiChoice has continuously invested in our premium channels M-Net and Super Sport to ensure that DStv becomes home of African television. The creation and success of the Africa Magic channels is a reflection of the popularity of this strategy of providing channels made in Africa for Africa. Thus, celebrating the best talent in this industry we believe will encourage further development and investment. We are truly proud to be part of this event which will showcase the best that Africa has to offer.”