How Wizkid Settled ARISE TV/THISDAY End of the Year Squabble

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Yinka Olatunbosun

It was an unwitting attempt by the foremost Starboy, Wizkid to end the squabble between the staff of THISDAY Newspapers and Arise Television Networks who were battling for the party supremacy when he repeated “THISDAY” continuously during his performance at the Eko Hotels and Suites, Victoria Island, Lagos.

The end of the year party was a surprise package from the Chairman of the two media organisations, Nduka Obaigbena, to celebrate the staff’s collective commitment to great service delivery inspite of the challenges of practice.

It turned out to be a gathering of THISDAY’s leading advertisers as well as former editors and staff. With Reuben Abati, a seasoned journalist and the face of Arise Morning Show, Mercy Ajisafe as comperes, the stage was set for music to serenade the audience in the hall which was not full until late into the night.

Of course, there was an air of disbelief as many didn’t expect to see Wizkid at that incredibly busy time of the year. But a quick reminder from Abati made it believable: THISDAY was the first media organisation to bring Beyonce, Jay-Z, Buster Rhymes and Ciara and to the African continent for performance in 2006.

But the Arise TV staff were bent on dominating the argument that it was their party. Anyway, although the party was dominated by Arise TV staff, THISDAY staff were quietly watching.

The sexy frontline international model, Naomi Campbell gave some brief remarks during her goodwill message, eulogising Obaigbena for his great projects, one of which is Arise fashion show where she was the guest model.

While the Founder, Zenith Bank Jim Ovia’s playful plea to introduce Wizkid was denied by the comperes since a sound check was in full swing, Wizkid was gearing up to come on stage.

Wizkid was his own hype man. He didn’t have his music partner, Tiwa Savage with him. Just the man, the band and the crowd. He shook hands with some fans while some struggled to collect one of his “blings” . Wizkid savoured the solo show, not allowing photojournalists to share the spotlight.

“THISDAY, let me hear you …” was his hype phrase as he performed the anthem, “Ojuelegba”, “Soco”, “Holler at your Boy” and “Fever” e.t.c