Bongani Ndlovu, Showbiz Correspondent
Rapper Asaph has asked to be considered a brand ambassador for the City of Bulawayo, a request that the Council has taken up as they have resolved to develop a policy for Brand Ambassadors and examine how this concept can be used in promoting the city.
In the latest Council minutes, Asaph through his public relations team of Paper Bag Africa, made the request.
The request was not for Asaph himself but for others from the city who are deserving. Asaph was earlier this year, nominated for the MTV Africa Music Awards, a major feat, not only for Bulawayo, but Zimbabwe.
“The Town Clerk Mr Christopher Dube reported (19 March, 2021) that he had received the following email from Paper Bag Africa: ‘My name is Gilmore Tee; I am the Head of PR & Branding at Paper Bag Africa and we are handling brands such as Mbo Mahocs, MTV Shuga and European Film Festival Zimbabwe. My team and I are running the PR & Branding Campaign for Asaph, a Zimbabwean musician who has been nominated for the MTV Africa Music Awards 2021. We are kindly requesting for a zoom meeting between the Mayor of Bulawayo and Asaph, who is an MTV Africa Music Awards nominee from Bulawayo,” read the minutes.
“Seeing he is from Bulawayo and will be representing the country on this continental platform, he needs the City Fathers’ blessings through this meeting. He would love to use his influence and social media platforms to take out information to do with the city. He would also love to do advertisement for the City (radio, jingles, press, billboards and tv commercials — City Brand Ambassadorship).”
In the letter, Asaph’s team, following up on the Mayor, Clr Solomon Mguni’s commitment to support artistes while they are still alive during Cal Vin’s funeral last year, also asked for a residential stand for Asaph.
“Lastly, we thought we should also put forward a residential stand request for him, building up to the mayor’s pledge to support artistes through giving them residential stands,” read the minutes.
In response, council said Asaph’s request was sent to departments that have since advised that being a brand ambassador would require some form of MOU hence the need for more information on the terms of engagement and also how these compare and affect current contracts if any.
“Also, there was need to evaluate Asaph’s delivery on the adverts and his suitability as a brand ambassador. Asaph should also register for a stand and participate in the council housing programmes as advertised from time to time. There were no objections to the virtual meeting with the Mayor,” read the minutes.
“It was resolved that: His Worship the Mayor, Councillor S Mguni participates in a virtual meeting with Asaph and his team. That Council develops terms of reference or policy for Brand Ambassadors and examines how this concept can be used in promoting the City and that Council signs a Memorandum of Understanding with Asaph stating terms of engagement as a brand ambassador,” read the minutes.