Magic System’s Salif Traoré named AFRIMAs director for Ivory Coast


Traoré’s appointment was confirmed last week in Casablanca, Morocco, following a unanimous decision by the AFRIMAs‘ international committee. The news also arrives a few months after the AFRIMAs team visited Ivory Coast to build capacity for knowledge sharing among African music professionals and culture enthusiasts ahead of the seventh edition of the awards.

First held in 2014 and organised in partnership with the African Union (AU) Commission, the AFRIMAs are a music and cultural initiative developed to celebrate, reward and showcase Africa’s rich musical heritage, stimulate conversations relating to its potential and values, and promote a positive image of the continent globally. 

“The country director plays a key role in the international committee of the AFRIMAs‘ comprehensive and stakeholders-based approach through a high level of strategic leadership and partnership,” the AFRIMAs said. “He carries out direction, leads, builds and maintains partnerships and relationships among the stakeholders … He is ultimately accountable in his country office for all aspects of the AFRIMAs‘ strategic partnerships, leading the consolidation and development of the AFRIMAs programme.”

The awards‘ brand communications manager Zineb Seyad said the appointment aligned with the AFRIMAs‘ mandate to “unify the African continent through music.”

“The appointment of Mr Traore is a significant, strategic step in the right direction, specifically for the African creative industry and largely, the continent, as he possesses the skills and fortitude to contribute towards realising the vision of the AFRIMAs,” she said. 

Traoré’s new post adds to his long list of accolades, which include achievements as a songwriter, producer and record label owner over the past 20 years, and as leader of the Magic System band, whose 1999 hit ‘1er Gaou’ pioneered a new sound in the Ivorian music scene and set the pace for a new generation of music in the country. In 2012, Traoré was appointed UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador by Irina Bokova for his messages for peace. 

“His popularity among policymakers, as well as his expertise in music production, event project management and media positions him as an exemplary ambassador to the values and goals of the AFRIMAs,” the pan-African awards platform said. 

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