There seems to be no stopping Bonang Matheba who has steamrolled her way through 2019, one achievement at a time. The 32-year-old media personality has just been announced as a recipient of an E! People’s Choice Award.
Matheba is the winner of the inaugural African Influencer of the Year category, beating out stiff competition from across the continent including local favourites musician Cassper Nyovest and TV presenter Minnie Dlamini. Nominees from further afield included Diamond Platnumz, Davido, WizKid, Tiwa Savage and Yemi Alade.
Queen B won the award following a weeks-long campaign where the winner was ultimately decided by fan vote.
The E! People’s Choice Awards, billed as the “pop culture event of the year”, is now in its 45th year. Previous winners in other categories include the who’s who of show business, including Kevin Hart, Ellen DeGeneres and Justin Bieber.
On hearing the news, Matheba said she cried. “I cried, I really did cry. After crying I called my mom and spoke to her on the phone. My mom is somebody who is very spiritual and believes in prayer, so I had a prayer session with her.”
Matheba described the win as “an out-of-body experience”.
“It’s one of those things that will probably not hit me until I get to [the awards] and I have seen everything around me … It’s one of those things you don’t dream of. It’s one of those things that you can’t even, you know, put in your plans. It’s an honour. It’s huge.”
Despite a string of other awards this past year, including a global social media award, Matheba said this one was “an honour”.
“I think the timing is the most important thing for me, for E! Entertainment to recognise the African continent right now … to see the African continent for what it is right now, and I think for myself to be at the peak of my career.”
Matheba, famed for her dedicated fans known as the B Force, said she was grateful for the passion they have for her.
“Are you guys absolutely kidding me? Did you actually do this? For real? Am I even worthy? Words cannot even describe this. They are intentional with their love, so I need to be intentional with my love and the love I put in my craft.”
• The E! People’s Choice Awards will be broadcast live from Santa Monica in the US on Monday, November 11 2019 from 4am CAT on E! (DStv channel 124).