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By Benjamin Njoku

Nigerian Afro-fusion singer Burna Boy has regretted his inability to be present to pick his first BandLab NME award, which was held on Wednesday at O2 Academy Brixton, London.

The African giant was crowned the Best Solo Act in the world at the award ceremony in a category that had top nominations including Arlo Parks, Billie Eilish, Dave, Little Simz, Pyra, Rina Sawayama, Sam Fender, Tkay Maidza and The Weeknd.

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Aitch and Big Zuu presented the award to Burna Boy, who accepted the trophy virtually.

In his video acceptance speech, Burna Boy said : “Thank you guys very much for this award. It’s my first NME [Award], Best Solo Act In The World, you get me?”

“Sad I couldn’t be there for my first NME. I know how lit the NME Awards are. You guys are probably drinking and turning up right now but hey, anyway, thank you! Appreciate that.”

The BandLab NME Awards 2022 returned to the O2 Academy Brixton. It was co-hosted by Daisy May Cooper and Lady Leshurr with performances from Sam Fender, Griff and Sigrid, Berwyn, Chvrches and Robert Smith, and Rina Sawayama.

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