On this past weekend’s episode of The Spotlight, 20 became 15…and then 16, as this episode was the first chance for the judges to use their ‘save’ authority to keep an eliminated contestant in the competition.  

Unluckily, it was the end of the road for Tumelo Vilakati, Nokukhanya Mkhonta, Glory Johnson and Sipheleliselwe Hlatshwayo. Whereas Siyanda Dlamini was saved to go through to the next round of the competition by the judges.

The rules of the competition allows judges to have three saves for the duration of the competition. Siyanda Dlamini was the first lucky beneficiary for this arrangement. Judge Khulekani “Karly B” Mamba delivered the exciting news to Dlamini that left him dumbfounded on stage. The only words he managed to mumble were “I am relieved” and “thank you.”  

Asked why the judges felt that Siyanda Dlamini was worth saving, Karly B said he is one of the best voices in the competition this year, “we believe that given a chance, he could definitely be a great contender for the next superstar.”

Mamba reminded contestants that in such a competition, a great performance alone would not make them winners. “You need to push people to vote for you in order to make it.”

The save of Siyanda Dlamini by the judges means that next week, instead of eliminating five contestants, six contestants will be eliminated to land to the Top 10.  

The Spotlight host Thamsanqa Sibandze said votes reached just over 23 000 last week and further challenged Emaswati to break last week’s voting record this week.

“Thank you Eswatini for your support, because the contestants time on The Spotlight depends on your vote,” he said.  

During the past week, contestants were given a selection of songs to choose from and were called in for rehearsals with a two-piece band to help them sing on time and in tune. The remaining Top 16 moved on to compete for their chance to be the next Eswatini’s superstar.  

MTN Senior Manager Consumer Meshack Maseko encouraged Emaswati who missed the Top 16 performance on Eswatini TV to stream it on the MTN Eswatini YouTube channel or on Y’ello Hub-‘Eswatini’s Premium Digital Content.’ 

“We further encourage Emaswati to vote for their favorite contestants because it is their votes that will crown the winner of the competition. Voting has been made easier through bulk voting. To vote, dial *7768# and follow the prompts. You can also vote by sending your favorite contestant’s code to 7768. Each vote costs E0.50,” he said.

Maseko further announced that Emaswati could now also vote via Y’ello Hub by:

  • Going to https://www.yellohub.co.sz/thespotlight/contestants/
  • Click Vote 4 me on the Contestant you wish to vote for
  • Enter your 8 Digit MTN Eswatini Number
  • Enter Number of votes (1 vote = E0.50)      
  • Click “SUBMIT VOTE” to submit your vote to MTN MoMo.    
  • Confirm your vote(s) by approving the MTN MoMo transaction on SMS popup or your MTN MoMo approvals list.    
  • Once you have confirmed the MTN MoMo transaction, your vote(s) will be added to the selected Contestant’s votes.

“Please note that the money will only be deducted from you MTN MoMo account if you have a sufficient balance and have confirmed the transaction via your mobile phone,” explained Maseko.  

The Top 16 voting window will close on Friday at 3:00pm.  

“Have your say by voting and decide who makes the Top 10. You can vote as many times as you like. By voting, you also stand a chance to win exciting rewards from weekly prizes up to grand finale prizes. There are about E50 000 worth of prizes up for grabs courtesy of MTN Eswatini and prize giveaways will be done weekly,” he said.

The competition voters’ weekly prizes are Mobicell and Smart T handsets. Grand finale prizes are a smart TV, laptop and five smartphones. The Spotlight is powered by MTN Eswatini in partnership with Eswatini TV, Huawei, Destiny Group, TBWA\Yati and Nandos.  

The Spotlight Top 16 and their voting codes

  1. 002-David Mpungose
  2. 003-Siyanda Dlamini
  3. 004-Zanoxolo Maseko
  4. 006-Sethu Magagula
  5. 007-Siphesihle Qwabe
  6. 008-Mfanawenkhosi Dlamini
  7. 009-Irven Msibi
  8. 010-Lungelotom Magongo
  9. 011-Lisa Mavuso
  10. 012-Naledi Masuku
  11. 013-Thembumenzi Mkhonta
  12. 014-Tselile Dlamini
  13. 016-Londiwe Kunene
  14. 017-Sihle Fakudze
  15. 19-Lucy-Kate Smith
  16. 020-Thabani Mngometulu