2016 in retrospect… The fights, the divorce, the deaths, the accolades
The year 2016 definitely would be regarded as the year ‘Thrones’. It was one year that reenacted the rise and fall of historical empires. It began with war of words, following two industry heavyweights, Mavin Records chief, Don Jazzy, and YBNL head honcho, Olamide, they openly engaged each other in war of words over the ‘Headies 2015 Awards’ that held on Saturday, January 1 2016, following the outcome of the much converted Next Rated Award.
Mavin Records’ Reekado Banks was declared winner over the favourite, Lil Kesh. This, obviously, didn’t go down well with Olamide, who stormed the stage with his YBNL crew to make known his feelings, when Adekunle Gold, another recording artiste of the label was to pick his award as Best Alternative Act for his song, Shade.
Baddosneh, as he is fondly called by fans flipped off the whole hall before dumping the microphone on the stage floor and stormed out the venue with his team. However, a few minutes later, just when everyone had thought the inferno had died down, Don Baba J, mounting the stage to receive his Special Recognition Award, in his speech, equally made jest of Olamide.
Like Olamide, he left the venue of the awards, Eko Convention Centre, Eko Hotel and Suites, Victoria Island, Lagos angrily in company of supreme Mavin crew all stars. It took the intervention of Africa’s richest man, Aliko Dangote, to broker peace between the two.
Enter Wizkid and Dammy Krane
While Don Jazzy and Olamide war of words was still raging, Afropop acts — Wizkid and Dammy Krane, were reportedly involved in a club fight on January 15, 2016. Both artistes were at upscale club, Quilox on Ozumba Mbadiwe Street, Victoria Island, Lagos for the All Black Party hosted by Super Eagles striker, Obafemi Martins, when things got heated between them.
The beef between the artistes started in December 2015, when Dammy Krane, in a series of tweets call and insulted Wizkid. The ensuing fight at Quilox was a consummation of the belt up anger between the artistes.
…Wizkid and Linda Ikeji
Wizkid was again in the news in April, when he was embroiled in another war of words with blogger, Linda Ikeji. It all started when Linda threw the first punch with a post on her blog, lindaikejisblog.com now Linda Ikeji Social; exposing Wizkid’s upscale home as a rented apartment.
She had posted on Instagram that Wizkid had received quit notice from the landlady of the Lekki home he claimed to have bought, adding that Porsche he claimed he bought was hire purchase, and that he was over the 25 years he claims to be. This, the Ojuelegba hit maker did not find funny, as he posted derogatory comments on the blogger’s Instagram page.
Also, Linda had in 2015, allegedly reported that the StarBoy, despite collecting an N8.9 million performance fee, failed to show up at a gig hosted by American University, Yola, Adamawa State.
In January this year, the blogger reported the arrival of Wizkid’s alleged second child with new baby mama, American model, Binta Diamond Diallo. Although it was not Linda that break the news; US-based Instagram page, owned by a Nigerian-American — The Shade Room, did.
Pique by the revelations, Wizzy, took to Instagram to refute her claims. And going for the jugular, the multiple award-winning act, called Linda names, using a lot of profanity and made derogatory statements about her female parts.
‘CelebMania Raw…Blackface versus Wizkid, 2Face Idibia, Paul Okoye
Like the popular American WrestleMania fights, Raw, Lord of the Ring, singer and defunct Plantashun Boyz member, Obiabo Augustine Ahmedu, popularly known as Blackface, was in the ring with his former band member, 2Baba, Wizkid and Paul Okoye in what may be termed CelebMania Raw.
Blackface blasted Wizkid and 2face on Twitter for taking his songs without his permission. While Wizkid ignored Blackface, 2face said he hold no grudge against him, but wonder why someone would continue to accuse people of stealing songs while they are nothing.
Chioma Chukwuka-Akpotha Versus Uche Jumbo, Omoni Oboli, Blessing Egbe, Ufuoma McDermott
This was a brief spat in Nollywood. Actress Chioma Chukwuka-Akpotha had made a comment about a picture of Uche Jumbo, Omoni Oboli, Blessing Egbe, and Ufuoma McDermott on Twitter, saying: “Sometimes, sisters aren’t really sisters! #MindingMyOwnBusiness, #StayingOnMyLane, #MovingOn.”
It felt like she was taking a shot, and the ladies in questions quickly responded, saying it was too early to start troubles. And that’s how a Nollywood female war was averted.
Davido and the Momodus
The paternity battle between HKN star, David Adeleke popularly known as Davido and the Momodus started on December 31, 2015 and which into the New Year, with the ‘Omo Baba Olowo’ taking shots at the mother of his child, saying she was unfit to be a mother and was responsible for the traces of marijuana found in his daughter.
The Momodus in defense claimed Davido’s family kidnapped the baby from her mother Sophie Momodu.
Oritsefemi Beaten To Pulp At Quilox
It was indeed ‘double wahala for dead body’ for the later day singer of the Abami Eda, Fela Anikulapo Kuti evergreen hit song, Double Wahala, Oristefemi, as he was involved in brawl with bouncers at the upscale club, Quilox. He was beaten to pulp.
According to reports, the singer also known as Rock Steady was prevented from going to a particular section of the club by one of the bouncers. Pissed the way the bouncer stopped him, he promptly responded with a slap on him. His assistant added up by stabbing the bouncer and injured him. This infuriated the rest of the bouncers, who took Oritsefemi hostage and beat him up as well. He was hospitalised following the effects of the beating he received. But it all ended with both parties issuing statements of apologies.
The Divorces/Separations…Like Tiwa, Like Lilian, Toyin and Muma Gee
The year witnessed one of the messiest divorce tales in the entertainment industry. On Monday, April 28, 2016, Nigerians woke up to the drama on Tee Billz’s Instagram wall as he x-rayed his marriage to Mavin Records first lady, Tiwa Savage.
Their relationship looked like a match made in heaven; at least that was the picture they painted on social media. So beautiful was their love seem that rap artiste, Ice Prince, in his song, That Could be Us, praised the couples love and told his potential girlfriend that their relationship could be like that of Tiwa and Tee Billz.
Days after, the Kele Kele Love singer in tell-it-all video explained how the couple had been patching things up for a long time. So, not many where surprised when Tiwa said all she had endured in the hands of her ex-strange husband. Rumours around town the duo is working on coming back together, nothing official is yet to come up.
Another celebrity couple whose marriage suffered the ill wind of separation in 2016 is music label owner, Ubi Franklin and actress Lilian Esoro of famed Clinic Matters. Ubi and Lilian got married November 1, 2015. Both went their separate ways following alleged infidelity and domestic abuse.
Though their marriage packed up in August 2015, it still got major mentions throughout 2016, with most of the 2016 drama coming from Toyin Aimakhu, as the relationship she went into immediately after leaving Adeniyi Johnson packed up in a messy way.
Her new-found love, Seun Egbegbe was alleged to have beaten her up at a hotel in Ikeja. Egbegbe was alleged to have kidnapped her which he denied ever doing anything as such. They eventually parted ways but not until involving the police who made them sign an undertaken.
More recently is the news of Kade crooner and Rivers State high chief, Gift Iyumame Eke (nee Uwame), popularly known as Muma Gee and her actor husband, Prince Eke.
Prince Eke had last week, called out his wife on Instagram for abandoning their baby and taking off to Abuja. The actor indirectly, disclosed that his marriage to Muma Gee has failed after three children.
The Many Deaths That Shook The Industry
Like other years, the Nigerian entertainment industry in 2016, experienced the cold hands of death. Sadly, some of the best entertainers in the industry answered grim reaper, when he came calling.
Among those who answered the call were veteran, Bukky Ajayi, who died on July 6, after battling heart-related issues; Henrietta Kosoko, wife of veteran actor, Jide Kosoko, who gave up the ghost on Monday, June 6, 2016, following a battle with diabetes.
Also snatched away by death was Martins Njubuigbo, better known as Elder Maya, who died September 30, after months of battling with a liver related disease. Prior to his death, a popular cleric based in Abuja, Joshua Iginla, had responded to calls to raise the sum of N1million for an urgent surgery by providing the money, but he died before he could get the needed medical attention.
Also on the list are, Muyiwa Osinuga, known as Nomoreloss, who was 39 at the time of his death; Babatunde Okungbowa, better known as OJB Jezreel, who died in the early hours of Tuesday, June 14, 2016 at the Isolo General Hospital in Lagos State.
Others are Olamide, aged 14, a budding Yoruba actor, who at the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital Ikeja, where he was rushed to after complaining of stomach pains in January; Olumide Awise (Baba Ogbon), Kannywood actress, Aisha Dankano, who died February 23 in Kano; Sani Aliyu Dandawo, a musician of repute in the north; Fred Eketa, who died of kidney related disease, Genevieve Nene, who died on May 1, just she was recuperating typhoid fever; Mike Odiachi, who died at Ikorodu General Hospital, and Fatai Onibuade aka Legend, whose death occurred on Tuesday, May 17, 2016.
Then Comes The Accolades
Despite the fights, divorces/separations, and the many deaths, the Nigerian entertainment industry was priced over $51million in 2016. This is based on a report by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC). The report was presented at the maiden edition of ‘Music Week Africa (MWA) in Nigeria’ with the theme: ‘The Role Of The Music Industry In Revitalizing The Economy’, which held at the Nigerian Stock Exchange, Lagos.
According to the Finance and Technology Director of MWA, Raoul Sawhney, it was possible that the industry made even more money than what was reported by Pwc, adding that the auditing firm predicted that it was likely the industry would generate almost $240 million per annum in the coming years.
For the Chief Executive Officer of the Nigerian Stock Exchange, Oscar Onyema, Nigeria’s entertainment and media market is the fastest-expanding major market globally. He said by 2019, the market would be more than twice as big, with estimated total revenue of $8.1billion.
It need be noted that eight Nollywood movies were selected for this year’s edition of the popular Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) in Canada. The festival organisers had earlier announced that the 2016 City-to-City programme will focus on Lagos, Nigeria, showcasing filmmakers living and working in Lagos, regardless of where their films are set.
The movies selected were Daniel Oriahi’s Taxi Driver: Oko Ashewo, Izu Ojukwu’s 76, Omoni Oboli’s Okafor’s Law, Niyi Akinmolayan’s The Arbitration, Elfike Collective’s The Wedding Party, Judith Audu’s Just Not Married, Abaa Makama’s Green White Green, as well as 93 Days by Steve Gukas.
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