South African songstress Lira has been nominated for a prestigious American BET (Black Entertainment Television) award for Best International Act in Africa.

The star, who released her most recent album Return To Love last year, has a strong gay following and performed at last year’s Joburg Pride event.

When asked why she thinks she has so many gay fans, Lira told Mambaonline in a 2011 interview: “I think gay boys love singers. I think there’s something that resonates with them in as far as the diva performer goes.”

The multi-platinum singer and multiple SAMA winner has been nominated along with Fally Ipupa (Congo), 2Face and D’Banj (Nigeria), Angelique Kidjo (Benin) and D-Black (Ghana).

“The first thing I did this morning was make travel arrangements,” the star told Times Live when she heard the news. “There will be many opportunities that will arise from this nomination and I want to be in the U.S. to take full advantage of them.”

She added: “I think this is a massive step in the advancement of my international career.”

The awards are set to take place on July 1 in Los Angeles and will be hosted by actor Samuel L. Jackson. Performers will include Chris Brown and Nicki Minaj.

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