*Senator Abbo assures deceased’s mother of justice
*Youth Party wants industry’s culture of violence addressed
Segun James and Wale Igbintade
The police, yesterday, exhumed the body of 27-year-old Afrobeats star, Ilerioluwa Aloba otherwise known as MohBad, who died recently in an unclear circumstances, for autopsy.
This was as the Senate Committee Chairman on Creative Arts and Entertainment, Senator Ishaku Elisha Abbo, has assured MohBad’s mother that the federal government would ensure that justice was done over her son’s death. Abbo visited the family of the late singer, in Lekki, Lagos.
At the same time, the Youth Party, has called on the Federal Ministry of Culture and National Orientation, the States Ministry of youth and culture as well as Performing Musicians Association of Nigeria (PMAN) to address the prevalence culture of violence and intimidation in the music industry.
MohBad died on September 12 and was buried the following day, allegedly without a doctor’s certification, a move that incensed many of his fans and Nigerians alike.
However, the police spokesperson in Lagos, Benjamin Hundeyin, gave the update via his X handle, saying, “Exhumation completed. Autopsy to commences.”
The police on Monday set up a 19-member committee to carry out a discreet investigation, which included exhumation, autopsy, scene visit, medical report, records of suspects and witnesses’ statements.
The committee was given two weeks to wrap up its investigations.
In the same vein, the Lagos governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, had invited the Department of State Security (DSS) to join the police in unraveling the cause of death of the music star.
Sanwo-Olu, also via his X handle on Tuesday, said the move was to “boost the investigations” into the death of the artiste.
These, nonetheless, hundreds of his fans had taken to the streets to seek the prosecution of those who had hands in his untimely passage.
This had also followed hashtag #justiceformohbad, now trending on X, formerly known as Twitter..
Already fingered in his death were Naira Marley, and his associate Sam Larry, with whom he had a misunderstanding before leaving the Marlian Records label in 2022.
Marley in a post on his Instagram handle has called for a thorough investigation into his ex-signee’s death and pledged to assist with “uncovering any foul play or injustice”.
Larry, too, a music promoter, came under heavy fire on the internet after a video of him and his men disrupting Mohbad’s video shoot with Zlatan Ibile surfaced on social media.
It was alleged that the music promoter and his associates subjected Mohbad to constant bullying and threats, resulting in multiple bodily injuries after he left their label.
Meanwhile, Abbo, who represents Adamawa North Senatorial District, was accompanied by artistes Tonto Dikeh and Iyabo Ojo to MohBad’s residence at Royal Pine Estate, Lekki, Lagos.
The senator, who gave an undisclosed sum to the mother, urged her not to feel intimidated, saying government was ready to protect her and the entire family members.
Toto Dikeh also promised that her Foundation would provide scholarship to MohBad’s son and the family was entitled to N100,000 every month.
Senator Abbo said, “I’m here to condole the family. I’m chairman Senate Committee on Creative Economy and Vice chairman on Youths because I’m also a youth.
“Nobody will hurt you. I am here to console with the family. When we heard of your son’s death and the controversy or circumstances that appeared on social media, we feel it is important to come here and condole with your family and see you.
“The government will never abandoned her citizen. This current administration has created a ministry, that is the ministry of arts, culture and creative economy and Mohbad was a major player in the creative economy of this country. So, when his death come, the Senate, feels that the interest Nigerians have in this matter will must begin to listen, we can’t pay dead ears to what Nigerians are crying for.
“It has taken a different dimension now. It’s like the movement of black lives matter, because celebrities all over the world have started posting justice for Mohbad. And I want them to know that government is interested in the case, nobody is hiding anything, nobody is above the law. We have absolute confidence in the Police.
“The IG has ordered a thorough investigation in the matter and it would be investigated. We are here to let the family know that we are with them.
“The Senate will resume on the 26th of September that is a few days from now and we are going back to the chamber. And we are assuring you that the Senate which belongs to the Nigerian people will look into this without any sentiment. We will look into the matter and we will invite the police to come and brief us on what they have done so far on this matter,” he said.
Senator Abbo, however, cautioned the youth as they go on to protest across the country, noting that they should not take laws into their hands.
On their part, the Youth Party in a statement by its Acting National Publicity Secretary, Ayodele Adio, said members of the party received the untimely passing of the rising Afrobeat Star with heavy hearts.
The statement recalled that the music industry in the US lost some of its leading lights, Tupac Shakur and Christopher Wallace (B.I.G.) in 1996/97 due to violence in the industry.
The party also implored the police to conduct its investigations transparently, expeditiously and publish it due to the public interest nature of the matter.
“Most importantly, we call on The Performing Musicians Association of Nigeria (PMAN) and other association of musicians in Nigeria to consider self-regulation and discipline to save their profession, livelihood and image of the Nigerian Youths.”