Be vigilant of your land,community leader counsels Journalists
The chairman of Kajola community -Magboro , Mr.Adesina Adeolu Victor has advised members of Nigeria Union of Journalists who have property in Arepo area not to be sleeping with two eyes closed as some people are going about dropping the Union’s name
taiwoabiodun.com has the full details
Residents of Kajola community , Magboro in Ogun State last Saturday were shocked when they sighted some strange faces going round claiming to have come there to inspect Nigeria Union of Journalists’ land/Estate they are contracted to fence round.
Suspecting these strange people, the Community chairman of Progressive CDA , Kajola , Mr.Adesina Adeolu Victor was quickly contacted while he had to calm down the residents not to manhandle them.
THESE PEOPLE WERE SIGHTED GOING ROUND AND INSPECTING LAND
We wanted to hand them over to the police but they started speaking and were incoherent until they left.
Speaking with Victor , he said ”I was in my house when I started receiving calls on phone that some strange people were going round our community pointing to some land and discussing strange things.I had to call some of the Executive officers who came with us .
”We asked these strange people what they were up to and one of them declared that they had come to Journalists’ Estate to work , to build a fence round the estate.A lady among them claimed that a Journalist sent them but when asked to produce the papers and called the Journalist that sent them, one of them called and during the conversation we heard them calling a Baale [Village Head] who told them to quickly leave and go to Journalist Estate,we have the video recording ”
Mr.Adekoya Ayodeji who is the Financial Secretary of the Estate described the action of these strange faces as not new but said journalsts will deal with them.”This is another set of land grabbers so they should be battle -ready for these people. We know there is still law against these people called land speculators.One of them called himself Kunle ”,the financial secretary of the Estate said.
Another member of the community .Engineer Oluwadare Akinwale who was visibly annoyed said ”they came in group with a woman and said they were looking for Journalists’ Estate. We suspected their mission, and I had to bring out my phone and used its camera to record their activities, despite their protests. We are appealing to Journalists to quickly go after these people to avoid embarrassment and overnight encroachment.We have our papers , we have no problem with our land here at all but they should not use our area to encroach others’ land. A stitch in time saves nine”, Akinwale stated.
SOME OF THE STRANGE PEOPLE GOING ROUND
The community members have sent the video clips to everybody alerting them to be vigilant.We want members of Nigeria Union of Journalists too to be at alert and investigate these people and ask the journalist that sent them, the community leader said.
Chief [Mrs] Abiodun Duro-Ladipo aka Moremi, Oya, who became a widow in her mid 30s did not remarry because no man could be like her late husband the late Yoruba Theatre Legend Duro Ladipo popularly known as Sango.On Thursday March 10, 2018 is the 40th anniversary of the death of the Yoruba Legend Duro Ladipo. She spoke with taiwoabiodun.com
With herYoruba traditional plaited hairshe looks morebeautiful and attractive . Her stature did not betray her age .At77 she did not look her age. Her average height combined with her faircomplexionshows that she has been taking good care of her skin coupled withher good set of sparkling white teethyet retains all the 32 teeth in her mouth.
Dangling on her neck is the beautiful beads supported by a golden chain the goddess wore .Beaming with smiles she answered all questions without bitterness .Her velvet voice is unique and reminds us the play ” Moremi Ajasoro “, a play whereshe actedthe wife of Ile -Ife monarch early 70s.
This is the ever smiling, jovial and one of the most popular and honorable actress in Yoruba land ChiefAbiodun Duro -Ladipo .However she still maintain her Ekiti accent that reveals where she came from
”My name is Chief Abiodun Duro- Ladipo also known as Moremi or OyaI met Duro Ladipowell over 50 years ago, precisely 1962.
The story began when I came to Oshogbo to stay with my sister hoping to become a Nurse. At a time I went to Duro Ladipo show while he was just setting up his Mbari Mbayo
Theatre group in Oshogbo where I acted in his play” .
How we started
Abiodun said her late husband wasa school teacher when he startedhis Mbari Mbayo Theatre Group , “he loved culture and tradition but that does not mean he was a traditional worshiper , there is a big difference between Culture and Religion, whatever you bowed to is whatyou worship but culture and tradition isa different thing entirely. God says you should worship Him .Duro’s father was a Catechist, Duro was conversant with the Bible, he knew Genesis to Revelation.
“We later married but not without problems for my parents did not want me to marry outside my town because I was the first child of the family. My parents called him and they discussed unlike nowadays when a lady would just go with a man without putting culture and fear into it . My father said he should let me be conversant with home. And I discovered good thing in himand hetoo discovered something good in me and our body chemistry worked together .I begged him not to let me down and he fulfilled all his promises . Itold him than I am the first born in the family and that I wanted to be a living good example and a mentortomy younger ones who were coming behind me and whothey would lookedup to.
Infact I have been acting forhim in his Mbari Mbayo Theatre Group before we got married..I am happy to say God used him for me and it is vice versa”.
”The hairstyle on my head is called Moremi, it is differentfrom Oya style.
I acted Moremi Ajasoro who was the wife of an Ife King.. The story of Moremi is the story of how Moremi gave herself away to be captured by the Igbo King and as a spy got the secrets of the enemies ( the Igbo) and gained freedom for Ife , this is the story of a woman called Moremi Ajasoro who rescued Ife from the Igbo, she vowed to sacrifice her only son,
Oluorogbo to the Esinrinmi river in Ife if she succeeded in her plan to rescue the Ifes from the Igbos”
Dearth of plays
The woman said ”It’s rare to see such our plays again , it is what happened in the olden days that we used to act as plays.But today our artistes did not even bother to do research for most of their plays are parlour plays or arm chair plays”.she however added that it is not all our traditions that are bad
Among the plays we staged are ;Oba Ko so, Beyi O se , Moremi , Oba Wa ja, Oba Moro, etc
We traveled to villages/ towns asking questions doing research on what we were going to do , we didn’t just sit down and act or do guess work. We don’t sit at home doing ” Parlour theater ” or an armchair plays
But today things have changed , the present crop of artistes are not doing enough’, she said.
Do they observe sacrifices or performed rituals before they go on stage ?
”We don’t do sacrifice and dont offer any rituals but we put all things in God’s hands”,she said.
Asked whether her husband used supernatural powers to perform whenfire is coming out from his mouth, Sango? The woman laughed and said ” I don’t know, it is only Duro who could answer such question”, she added ” Duro has taken away his fire”
Can we compare Duro Ladipo’s Sango with today’s Sango
She said laughed and screamed ” May God help us . We have different types of Sango now. Many have seen what they are longing to see in Sango , some in the name of wanting to be Sango would pour ,,,into their mouths and Sango himself will come back and hit them and wipe their face”
Did the river Esinrinmi trulyt exist? , she was asked, she replied ”The river is stillthere in Ile Ife.It is there .It is still being worshiped .Yes”
On why she refused to marry despite being young when her husband died , but the woman screamed ”Who will marry Sango Olukoso’s wife? Nobody,
Yes , I wasn’t up to 40 years when Duro Ladipo died .People asked same question but how many men can behave as Duro behaved? .How many can perform the duties and roles Duro played ? Come . I don’t want to be remembering that …”
”Yes , I heard a lot of stories about his death, by then he was hospitalized at the UCH andthen I didn’t know where I was . But people speculated that there was thunder, some said it rained , and some also said series of things happened but above all the University College Hospital ( UCH), Ibadan knew they received visitors.”
Many sang his praises
‘Yes, many sang songs for him ,I released a record for him after his death too”
To be continued ..read about Duro -Ladipo’s beard, struggles, costumes,, etc
41years after his fatal accident , Bob Aladeniyi recounts his ugly stories .He spoke with taiwoabiodun.com
The Juju Lecturer
He is handsome, meticulous , humble, disciplined, sincere , hard -working , easy going, honest , cheerful -giver and a God – fearingman- these are the sterling qualities bestowed on this multi- talented musician, Bobade Aladeniyi .
In Owo, his country homehe is respected and honoured .He teaches the old and the younghow to sing and play guitar .He also advises the upcoming musicians to desist from drug sayingit will not take them anywhere .No wonder he is called Juju Lecturer .
After strumminghis guitar for some minutes , he gave a heavy sigh, adjusted his chair , chuckled and meticulously packed his guitar in its box in a corner of his living roomand started the interview” My real names are Bobade Aladeniyibut everybody calls me ‘Bob’. I don’t smoke and don’t even drink alcohol”, he told this reporter.
Aladeniyiwho has over 10 guitars of different brands, drumsof differenttypes and assorted loud speakers along with other instrumentssaid, pointing” these instruments are my tools and they are like your own tools like recorder, penand paper too”.
He continued” I was born inSeptember 15,1950 in Owo ,in the then Western State (now Ondo State) .I started playing guitarin1966 at the age of 16. It all started one day when Iwoke up and took my little savings to buy aBoxof guitarand notes from UTC in Lagos andI started building myself up, and that year 1966 was the beginning of my career as I started playing .I started practicing guitar at 14 , nobody taught me. I went to UTC ,bought a box of guitar , notebook and that was how I startedpracticing until I joined the late Fatai Rolling Dollars in 1967.The late Rolling Dollars was a guitar wizard , and when I got to himI had more experience and that was where KSA discovered me . I later left RollingDollars to join King Sunny Ade popularly known asKSA in 1969 where I learnt more aboutguitar.”
While with KSA I was the one who strummed theguitar when KSAsingsand asked eachinstrumentalist (and myself ) to play our instrument in that trackTani Pepe tani atagbe,ikanmudu tani atala,b’oyinba tani a roro oyin, be buwa loju wa …..e pe Bob Aladeniyi mi ko fi guitar da wa laraya o di regi….(and he strummed the guitar to show the evidence). Infact I was very popular and my boss, KSA loved me so much, and he used to call me ” O ni guitar Ara”(Guitarist Wizard)
I took drug and smoked hemp
Did he ever smoked Indian hemp to enhance his performance ?, this reporter asked , and he responded “Yes , I did drug, I smokedIndian hemp, took cocaineand that was then . It was oneguy who taught me how to use cocaine when I travelled to America .But I have stopped all those things. One does not need to take drug to enhance his performance at all. Infact I don’t drink alcohol at all now”.
“I have been tomany countries like London, France, Germany, USA, Darkar , Togo, Miami “, he said.
Aladeniyi was so popular in the music industry in the 70s because of his dexterity in playing guitar which was unrivaled , he said ” Anytime we went out to play in Clubs like Kakadu or Q Club or YoungSocial Clubin Ikorodu Road , there you will be hearingabout me, as fans would eagerly be waiting for me to turn up , and immediately I am sighted the whole environment would go into frenzy that Bob has come, KSA’s Master guitarist has arrived.It was always interesting.”
He added “There were so many functions and partieswhere they would be expecting me . If I wasnot physically present ordidn’t turn up our fans would not come to buy tickets , it is ‘no Bob , no ticket sales‘. There was another popular soloist with us then , he is Dele Akande whowas the former KSA soloist , he died few years ago , we also metat Rolling Dollars before he joined us in KSA band .
My first travel
“I played what we called ‘ juju guitar’ in an album we waxed in London , and in a track ‘ Seinde’ where we sang his praises ( Seinde was one of the most popular medical doctors in
Lagos then) we also waxed : Asiko Laiye Eda kan Ko mola, E kilo f’omode,A fai ba won Ja won nbinu, among others that were hit. When we staged our shows atSt Macras in London in 1971 and entertained our fans we were hailed to high heavens and that was our first time to travel out to play. It was an unforgettable period. My boss, KSAledboth in songs and guitar while we followed and others would go into frenzy. He was called the greatest musician from Africa, the greatest Master Guitarist and dancer for he was a great entertainer , composer, skilled dancer and he toured the world. He is great and humble , that is King Sunny Ade for you”.
Why I parted with KSA
Bob Aladeniyi in his hey days was popular and became famouswith his guitar .He has made name and with his age cum experience in musicand therefore believed he was maturedenough to beon his own, helater parted with KSA band and went ahead to form his own Band , he said ” When it was timeto establish my own band I told my boss KSA but he said no, I should not go , KSA said I should not leave the band since I was still valuable and useful .”
On whether the rumour is true that KSA sent eminent personalities to beg him to return to the Band , Aladeniyi shook his head and said ” It is true that KSA sent important dignitaries to Owo my home town to plead with me .Yes, the late Ooni of Ife Oba Sijuade Olubuse , the lateKabiyesi Olowo of Owo Oba Kolapo Ogunoye , the late Alonge the Tailor were all contacted by KSA to call me back but I said I had bought my own instruments and that was all. I explained to themthat there was no going back. That was how I left and formed my band ‘Bob Aladeniyi Band’ .
“Although many rumoured that we fought but it is not so , we didn’t quarrel.How can you fight with your boss who has been nice to you? .The fact is that when it was time to quit I quit”.
According to Aladeniyi he has many appellations ” I was called ‘ Juju Lecturer, Oga Guitar, Guitar Wizard and many more but the one that stuck to me till date is Juju Lecturer .I have taught many how to play the guitar instrument , Itaught Segun Awe ( who played for Commander EbenezerObey) , Monday John respected mein guitar playing .Shina Peters is like a son to me he respects me a lot .Many University and Polytechnic students who studiedmusic had passed through me. Oncein a while they invite me to these institutions to teach them practical
Bob Aladeniyi and Taiwo Abiodun
Obey and KSA , who is great?
Though Bob has played with the two great musicians ( KSA and Obey) but he found them to be great in their own ways as each possessed his own different talent .”Whenyou talk of entertainment KSA is unrivaled and if you again talk of a great composer Obey is great.They have different talents .I can’t say who is the boss between the two for Obey isa good composerwhile KSAis a goodentertainer.KSA is a great Master guitarist , he could play for hours , he could dance till tomorrow , he is a talent to the musical world. He has been playing guitar before I joined him .He is a multi-instrumentalist. In Nigeria and Africa no man can beat him with his ‘ rubber’ legs and in guitar. I repeat nobody can compete with him.He is just a gift to the world”.
Today’s musicin comparison
Aladeniyicondemned the types of music or songs being played today and said ‘ they are just playing Saje (gutter music) ,I can’t stand it .Imagine they are now blending our juju music with hip pop. because they have no music to play.Juju music is still relevant that is why all these boys are now playing them and remixing them into hip pop. What are they singing? , is it the music you cannot play into the hearing of our children that is called music? The present day musiccan corrupt our children. Pick one KSA album and listen to its lyrics, listen to its ballad, guitar or instrument then you know that is song. Pick Obey’s record it is still evergreen.Compare these with the rubbish they are playing they called music today.Mark you all these type of music will soon fade away , it’s just a matter of time”
My fatal accident
Each time Aladeniyiremembers the incidence that almost wiped out his family in an auto crash he feels somber but stillgives thanks to God. Narrating the episode he said he almost died in an auto accident in 1978 although he does not want to remember the sad story again .When pressed further hesaid ” In 1978I had an engagement for Egbe Omo Owo Social Club in Ikoroduand I had to leave Benin whereI went to play for Lagos, on getting to Sagamu the accident happened and I lost my wife , son and my band managerin the accident that was the most painful moment in my life “, he said almost in tears. I thank God my band is still on.I believe it was the work of enemies who attacked me on July 15 , 1978 when I was returning to Lagos from Benin where I went to play .I was in myPeugeot 504 Car with my late wife, Alaba and her babies ;Segun Aganga ( my Band manager) in the car and I had almost arrived Ikorodu before the accident happened”. He recalled with pains and emotions as he almost burst into tears again ,” I drove into a Bedford lorry carryinglogs of wood.My Boys had gone before me to Lagos and I was coming behind them , and I was already in Ikorodu when the fatal accident happened.I am the only one that survived with big scars, forI had a lot of stitches on my cheeks, mouth and body, the scars are there till today and I will carry these scars to my grave.The 504GL air conditioned car perished under the Bedford lorry. Theaccident was so fatal thatall Nigerian newspapers carried the news”.
Music runs in the family
According to Aladeniyi the music profession runs in the family , he said “My son who is still a student atthe University of Ilorin plays guitar and he teaches others too.My two female children also play music , it is a legacy in our family and we are known for this. Gone were the days when they say musicians are beggars , today lawyers , medical doctors and other professionals want to sing .It is in blood , it is talent and it will just burst out in you .Music is like spirit you don’t know when you will just start to sing”
I smoked marijuana
Like many musicians , Aladeniyisaid he was into drug when playing guitar on stage , he said ” I smoke a lot of marijuana , cigarette , and alcohol to make me feel high. It was interesting then.I had To behigh before going to the stage but KSA never smoked in his life.He was just a talent .Now as I am in my late 60sIdon’t smoke anymore and I don’t need to lie that I did not smoke Igbo whenI was young .But let me warn the upcoming musicians that one does notneed to feel high or smoke before onecan perform . I have stopped all these because it is a bad habit andwhile some escaped from itothers are not lucky as they are badly affected.This is a message I am passing to all including my own children that you don’t need to do drug before you become popular and make it in life .Drugs don’t pay, the reverse , the repercussion is always deadly”, he counseled .
The Guitar Wizardsays he is grateful to his former boss, KSA , “When things were roughforme , KSA bought musical instruments worthtwo million naira for me and I bounced back. We are still very close. When he clocked 70 years of age I wentthere to celebrate with him.He is really a nice boss. And I know how much he gave me towards my mother’s burial”.
Young coming musicians
For Aladeniyi doing drugs is not the way to achieve fameand success,he advise theupcoming musicians .The musician however confessed hesmokedmarijuana while performing on stage in order to feel high , he counseled “I implore everyone to always remain grateful to his or her benefactor and I thank God that six of my children are graduates .I have built a house and I thank God I am still alive.
How rich is Bob?
When asked how rich he is , the 68year- old -musician burst into laughter,
helooked up as if searching for answer from the ceilingand with total humility said “I am not a millionaire but I thank God for His mercy “.
He thencontinued singing and strumming his Gibson guitar: Ta ni pepe tani atagbe , ikamudu tani atala. B’oyin ba t’ani a roro oyin ,be bu wa lehin a o ko siteni begi loju igi a ruwekafi ti s’anakiyesoogun e pe Bob Aladeniyi mi o kofi guitar dawa l’araya , O di regi !
Unperturbed as he exhibited unusual confidence while strolling about the huge excavation site for the proverbial goldmine. The young man, a Kano indigene simply identified as Ahmed was ably accompanied by his able lieutenant and labourer, Abubakar from Bauchi, who obviously was wearing a frowned face. He took his spade and headed towards the dug tunnel.
The duo hinted this reporter that they came on a voyage in search of precious stones which are readily available in commercial quantity in Ijero.
After waiting for over one hour for Abubakar to appear at the other end the long wait at the lonely and unsightly enclave appears to this reporter an endless one.
A trip to Ijero Ekiti in search of gold made these two friends left their homes to search for greener pastures
One of the residents revealed that the town city Centre is besieged daily by indigenes of different nationalities, name it: Togolese , Lebanese , Sudanese, Liberian, Cotonou , Senegalese, as well as Europeans who stormed the ancient town for similar reason.
However, the ecological threat caused by illegal mining activities in IJERO and its environs cannot be over emphasized even as the spiral effect on the water sourced majorly from the wells is believed to be injurious to the health of thousands of hapless IJERO residents.
Unless urgent steps are taken by concerned authorities, the entire IJERO community, despite the huge deposits of rich mineral resources, may soon face the imminence of socio- economic degradation resulting in health hazards, no thanks to mining operations giving outsiders false impression that all is well with them.
There is no doubt that the ancient town is blessed with mineral deposits.
According to Mr. M. Yewande “Ijero is blessed with solid mineral resources that is next to Jos. What we have here can sustain this town if well tapped .We have chiefly among them : limestone, gold, bauxite, copper, turmaline, cushy, feldspar ,cataract, foundry sand, costa mica, tantalite, ruby, rubilite, sodonite, prodonite, tin, columbite, diamond , bauxite, iron and kaolin.We equally have gold which is yet untapped”.
How illegal miners work
There are a lot of illegal miners in the land , according to a source who begged for anonymity. One of the illegal miners explained how they get the precious stones , “when we sight a certain stone we would dig that place of over 200 feet deep and this leads us again to sight another stone ( which acts as a pointer to where we are going) then we continue digging until we again come across some specific stones which leads you ahead that you are getting there for they are like a compass locating where these precious stones are”.
Aside this , the illegal miner continued “there is a chemical used to blast these stones , we would fix it with wire and move away from the place , at least some feet away and connect it with the battery then blast it and within 20 minutes to one hour its all over, then some stones would be exposed while water would be oozing from the area and the next thing to do is to use pumping machine to drain the water and continue blasting the rock sighted”.
How we get the land
Another illegal miner said “We buy some portion of land for 400 naira per day and will be checking whether we would get these precious stones , if we get them it’s our luck and if we don’t get them we have lost our 400 Naira. However we have a group and the group is divided into seven while each group would divide themselves and part ways and whoever gets luck to get a place where mineral deposits are would call others and then the digging starts “, the man explained
Death on the prowl
These mining sites had recorded a lot of deaths .”In a year over 10 official deaths were reported not to talk of those secretly buried. Many died when the excavated sand caves – in. Many at times illegal miners would fall into the deep trenches dug or heaped sand would fall on many and buried them alive “, said an illegal miner.
A young man said ” when they die we would use long rope to bring the corpses out from the dug holes. A source said ” at least an average of 20 people die in this process. Last year, I know about six people who died in the process.They tied a rope and went into the hole and tied it on the body of the boy and brought it out.However , while they announced the few natives that died there but we record high number of deaths from the Hausas and foreigners whose history are not known”. A man said his cousin died in one of the dug holes last year, he said ” we were at home when his friends came to inform us that my cousin had died while scooping the earth.We cried and cried and cried for he was yet to get married.
“Another incidence happened when a boy after he had finished (in the dug well ) a rope used to bring him out cut in the process and he fell back into the pit , he broke his neck and his back that was all.He was eventually tied again and brought out dead!.
“But when a foreigner dies they would say it is the wish of Allah and no cries while some would be buried in the ground”.
No one can be trusted as some unscrupulous natives connive with outsiders to loot the town.The financial gains realized from these resources is either pocketed or go into private pocket or taken away by these foreigners .
Most of the high class people one looks up to as rich men are thieves who assist these foreigners and put them through on how and where to get these products. In the end these so called big men would collect money and get away.
Yewande is concerned about them , he said ” there is no development here.There is no impact that these precious stones are found here because they are carted away with the connivance of big men in our community. Many have become sick because of the blasts of these stones. The illegal blasting has created a lot of problems here.Many developed hearing problems , mental disturbance, fear of lead poisoning has led to deaths of many. Madam Mary Adefebi said she had no peace and her sleep was always disrupted when she was admitted at the Specialist Hospital where blasting was done behind the hospital .” In the night I would be hearing blasts and my eardrum was always affected.A woman collapsed and died one day as a result of the blast because she was hypertensive”.
Another complainant whose house is close to the fields said ”many houses are shaking for they had dredged most of these places.One day houses would be sinking .I pray the State government should assist us in this.
Yewande said what happened in Zamfara ( as people were drinking poisoned water) will soon happen here.
The royal father who is not impressed about the environment and with frowned look said ” what we have here is pure looting , people come from Sudan, Moronvia, Togo, Cotonou , Senegal, Europe .
Group Captain Ropo Aiyegbusi ( retired) one of the notable indigenes of the state decried the situation and said the fault comes from leaders of the community who did not cooperate with the vigilante group ,he asked ” How many have they arrested? .It is connivance , some of our people do plan with these unscrupulous elements to steal our resources. We have many foreigners who are staying here illegally and because of our precious stones stay behind here stealing and looting ..
“How many of these people have the license to use? Do they pay to the local government what they are supposed to pay ? What of the state and the federal government ? Don’t we have law that covers mining? . I know it is not yet time for God to intervene ,People are dying silently”, he added.
An Honourable who begs for anonymity also lamented on how some notable and influential people connive with the natives and loot their precious stones.
The Juju Rock Master – Micho Ade popularly called ‘Sunny Ibadan’ in the ’80s,he is called after King Sunny Ade for his style of his music , dressing and his stagecraft .He speaks about his travails and his next album taiwoabiodun.com met the musician at Ibadan
His appearance did not betray his status as he dressed simple and one can hardly recognize him. He with total humility beckoned on this reporter that he has been waiting for the interview
PHOTO BY TAIWO ABIODUN
”In the year 1991 some terrible things happened to me; my personal car, official car, Band’s vehicle all developed problems at the same time. My wife was operated on while a dead baby was brought out. My younger ones were hospitalized , and my children fell ill. In November that year I had accident six times ”
Can you introduce yourself?
My names are Michael Adedayo Alaba Omaside alias Micho Ade .
Why are they calling you Sunny Ibadan?
They said I play like King Sunny Ade , well I am happy for he is my father in music , a genius , a super guitarist .I am proud of him. He is baba ni baba!
When did you start music?
I started singing while in Primary school .I was a member of the school band at St.Silas Anglican Primary school ,Ikere – Ekiti, later I joined All Souls African School , Ikere Ekiti. After my Modern School education at Modern Three , I joined Jossy Ayorinde Band in Ikere Ekiti for seven years ( 1969-1976) .Later I started my own band in 1977 and I am still playing music.
When was your first album?
My first album was released in 1978 titled ” E sope” but the sales was poor may be because of the poor publicity but the second one was also ” Eyin Agba, Eyin Odo” .
Which album shot you to the limelight?
Oh! It is “Oju Ogun Laiye” ( Life is a battlefield ) which was released in 1991.
Where did you get the inspiration ?
Yes, the song is from my own personal experience and what I observed in my environment. In the year 1991 some terrible things happened to me; my personal car, official car, band’s vehicle all developed problems at the same time. My wife was delivered of a stillborn baby , my younger ones were hospitalized , and my children fell ill. In November that year I had accident six times, and my younger ones in the hospital and my wife was operated on while a dead baby was brought out. Many things happened to me and I thought it was a spiritual attack that was why I waxed the record.
Have you travelled out in the course of your music ?
Yes, I did .I went to the UK , Holland and some African countries .
How many albums have you waxed so far?
I have waxed about 21 albums while the next one will be released by April this year to make it 22 albums. And the tittle of the latest album is Desperation . In the album I sang about how our people are so desperate to be rich , to make money, for there is nothing they cannot do to make money.
The last album I waxed is ” Turning Point” I sang that we would leave everything behind therefore we should be good for people to speak well about us when we are gone .We should do what God want us to do according to the Lord’s Prayer ….as it is heaven… So it means that is how it is being done in heaven.
Do your rivals use juju against one another?
Yes , it is true that they used juju to fight one another in the olden days .I once went out to play one time when our co -musician used juju to stop our instruments from functioning .We were shocked .The rival musician attacked us because we were going to play for the same celebrant .
Another incident is that of a burial ceremony for two brothers of same parents who were burying their father. Each had his own musician and it was a thin -line in- between us , it was a surprise and also funny that the rain was heavily falling on us yet did not rain on our rival musician. We were shocked , and we couldn’t play.Yes, they attack one another with juju. It is real.
T fell us about your family
I have two wives and I don’t have children outside my matrimonial home .Yes!, women flock around us as musicians but one has to be careful too, you don’t need to send them away for we cannot do without them, we need them too.
How much did you make in your first outing?
The first money I made from my outing was 75 Naira ( seventy five Naira) and it was a big money then, that was in 1977.
Where do you get your instruments
I saved money gradually to buy my instruments before I started working .I had my full instruments and they are up -to -date.
How do you get Costumes
Depending on the cloth, if it’s Ankara , linen, or lace and its quality then we prefer it not minding the price.
Do you receive royalties?
You cannot compare civilized world with ours here in Nigeria, and painfully in some African countries they do give them royalties , we are begging the government to look into this .
Many musicians who had worked hard should be reaping their fruits at old age but they don’t enjoy at old age.
Where do go for Inspiration
When I’m in a quiet place it could be in the morning, afternoon even while driving inspiration could come and I would park and write it down but I get inspiration mostly in quiet places .
Do you sing abusive songs
I have never joined them in singing abusive songs .If anybody offends me I will quickly settle and make peace with him , even when I meet my detractor eating I would go and eat along with him .Music is like newspaper where we have many sections like Adverts Features, Politics , Crime , Sports among others .Some fans love abusive songs,
Do you do drug to make you high?
No, I don’t do drug to feel high .Any musician that smokes and drinks for inspiration is not a good one.
How do you feel when sighted on the street?
Yes, many will stop me on the street asking after my family .
How rich is Micho Ade?
Well, I’m not rich.Traveling out does not make you rich in those days but I was famous with good name which is better than silver and gold..it also gave me exposure.
I thank God I have a place to lay my head . I have children and have peace of mind.
Untold story of CIROMA roundabout
…..I’m always sad when Ojude Oba Day is approaching
……body found 10 days later at Okunowa
Exactly 14years ago when this ‘Yoppie’ motorcycle (Okada) was placed at this roundabout called CIROMA .It is named after an Okada rider ,Olumide Olatunji ( aka CIROMA) who was kidnapped at the Ojude Oba party and killed during Ileya festival in 2004. taiwoabiodun.com reports
At the State Hospital’s roundabout ,Ijebu- Ode , Ogun State, is a motorcycle placed on a high moulded brick and protected with barbed wires to guard it. The epitaph reads: CIROMA ROUNDABOUT 2004. IN MEMORY OF OTUNBA OLUMIDE OLATUNJI (aka CIROMA) FORMER GEN. FINANCIAL SECRETARY OF ACOMORAN , IJEBU ODE WHO DIED ON TUESDAY 3RD FEBRUARY 2004 COMMISSIONED TODAY FRIDAY 10th SEPTEMBER 2004 BY ALHAJI TUNJI SARAFA ISHOLA SECRETARY TO OGUN STATE GOVERNMENT. CONSTRUCTED DURING THE TENURE OF BASHORUN ( DR) TOYE ALATISHE , THE EXECUTIVE CHAIRMAN OF IJEBU ODE LOCAL GOVERNMENT
THE OKADA AT THE ROUNDABOUT IN MEMORY OF CIROMA
PHOTOS BY TAIWO ABIODUN
HOW HE WAS KILLED
As CIROMA was sighted by some suspected armed robbers who overheard him while calling his colleagues to come and protect the visitors and guests at the Ojude Oba party the men of the underworld seized him , bundled him into his own car boot and drove him away. His decomposing body was later found on the 10th day at Okunowa express way , Ijebu Ode.This is how an okada rider narrated the ugly story .
As Olabisi , wife of the fallen hero began to speak ,tears cascaded her cheeks and with voice laden with sorrow narrated her own story ” in 2004 September during the annual Ileya celebration of Ojude Oba festival when a popular Yoruba musician ( names withheld ) came to play . I learnt that my husband was intimated that some armed robbers were around to unleash terror at the party and he quickly alerted his Oodua Peoples’ Congress members who were also the security personnel in the community, unfortunately these men of the underworld overheard CIROMA while alerting his members on phone to come and save the situation and that was all. And he was not seen again until on the 10th day when his decomposing body was discovered in a bush at Okunowa, near express-way of Ijebu Ode”.
Corroborating Olabisi’s words , Comrade Wasiu Ibrahim one of the Okada riders said the late CIROMA was a gallant fighter , who fought for his people , he said ” it is true of what the wife said ,the late Olatunji was our leader in this community , he was the General Financial Secretary of Okada riders Association and was useful for us all. He was at the Ojude Oba festival and was intimated at the party that some touts were fighting , he was called to come and settle the rift , and that was all .He was never to be seen again. While some claimed it was some robbers at the party that bundled the deceased into his own car boot , killed him and dumped his body in the bush .They said the armed robbers overheard him calling the security men and informing them of the impending doom. We heard that was what happened”, Ibrahim continued ” he was not seen that night and the following day until his people and vcolleagues started searching for him .His decomposed body was later discovered in a bush 10 days later”.
Ismaila Abiodun, another Okada rider said the fallen hero was a peace- loving man who was ready to lay his life down for anybody , ” the news jolted us, we cried and cried but up till now nobody knows who did the wicked act”, Abiodun lamented MYSTERY OF THE OKADA
The monument which was erected since September 18,2004 has remained sacred..Despite its location nobody ever attempted to steal it. In fact, the monument is taken care by the Okada riders – his living colleagues who tidy the place always , which according to one of them is the only way to honour the fallen hero.
To a novice or a visitor to the environment , one would think that the displayed Okada motorcycle is to warn riders of its danger that had made many lost their limbs and therefore as a warning signal to desist from their reckless riding as this reporter was erroneously informed. But when taiwoabiodun.com demanded for the reason for placing it there, he was told that it is in honor to a fallen community hero – an Okada man, who they claimed disappeared mysteriously during the Ojude Oba party at an Ileya festival in the town 14years ago.
Thus , honoring the fallen hero corrected the impression that all Okada riders are roughnecks, not serious -minded and irresponsible .
Comrade Olugbenga Odugbesan described the day CIROMA was buried as a memorable day ,” Infact the then ruling governor , Otunba Gbenga Daniel was there to honour the fallen hero because of what he has contributed to the community . Odugbesan said “The Local Council chairman, and the present Oba of Ososa implored us to honour him by naming this roundabout after him for his contribution to the community. This was why a brand new motorcycle (Okada) called ‘Yoppie’ was put at the roundabout for his remembrance while the roundabout was renovated , designed, painted and named after him, but instead of his real name it was his nickname , CIROMA , that everybody knew him for was written there and till today , it is called CIROMA roundabout”.
An indigene of the town,Kehinde Olugbode described the monument as great and of high value, he said “since the Okada had been placed there about 10years ago nobody has made any attempt to steal it , nobody, and that shows how revered he is” , he said . THE MAN ,CIROMA
The late Olumide Olatunde (aka CIROMA) was a powerful young man with huge stature and was an Okada rider who rescued and assisted his people when needed. Infact he was a local freedom fighter and activist especially for his ‘constituency’ ,Okada riders’ Association where he was the General Financial Secretary.
According to Olusola Olabisi , the wife of the late CIROMA, her husband, the late Olatunji (CIROMA) was an Okada rider and also the General Financial Secretary of ACOMORAN, Ogun State Chapter, he was their strong man who used to champion their cause . She told taiwoabiodun.com of the great assistance he used to render the Okada riders when needed which made him popular , her words “there was a time when Okada was banned in Ijebu -Ode here but my late husband , CIROMA kicked against it and fought for its restoration , and the ban was lifted. He was always called whenever there was any problem which he always solved. Unfortunately, in the end he was mysteriously killed”. MEANING OF CIROMA
When his wife was asked why he was called CIROMA, she replied “that was his nickname , you know all these Okada riders have one nickname or the other , so they are called what they want or their friends gave them , it was his friends that used to call him CIROMA.”
Damilola , one of the daughters of CIROMA said his father was humble in all totality .When asked whether she would step into her father’s shoe , she replied “Oh, I wish I were a male child I could have continued unfortunately we are all girls , and we cannot do it , we are all women. If even I wanted to go into the business my husband will not allow me “, she said as she started crying again. UNFULFILLED PROMISES
Madam Olabisi , wife of the late CIROMA said she is always sad each time he remembers Ojude Oba Day and whenever she passed through the roundabout, her words. “I must confess to you that each time Ojude Oba festival is approaching I am always sad because I would remember my dead husband , how we discovered his decomposing body in the bush and his killers were never found”.
But she however confessed that she is grateful for the honour and respect given to her husband by Ogun State, and the local government especially his Okada Union workers,”though it was a bad day seeing my husband being lowered into the grave in his early 40s , but I thank all those who came to honour him and dedicated this roundabout for his memory ” .
She with her daughter , Damilola however chorused “nobody fulfill the pledges they all promised the family , we are hungry “. NO MARRIAGE AGAIN
Olabisi said she cannot remarry again when asked whether she would remarry and continue with her life , she said ” what type of man will I marry again when my children are giving birth? I am already a grandmother and I don’t need a partner again, what for?” , she asked , as her lips parted with a smile,the first time she would smile during the interview.
While the dates on the epitaph cannot be relied upon as the deceased’s family and friends claimed he was killed in September ( not February) The epitaph’s dates could have been wrong.