In the aftermath of the tragic passing of singer Ilerioluwa Oladimeji ‘Imole’ Aloba, popularly known as Mohbad, Nigeria is once again on the brink of a revolution, with youth-led protests gaining momentum.
Unlike the previous call to end police brutality (#EndSARS), this time, it’s a collective outcry over the loss of a rising music artist.
Social media has been inundated with anger, frustration, and demands for justice, drawing thousands of young Nigerians back to the streets in their pursuit of accountability and change.
Mohbad, who passed away on September 12, was laid to rest the following day, sparking both online and offline outrage.
A promising music artist known for his profound lyrics and relatable tracks, Mohbad’s untimely demise has sent shockwaves through the entertainment industry and the nation as a whole.
His unexpected death, without a clear cause, has left his fans, fellow Nigerians, and fellow artists in mourning and seeking answers.
Various influencers and celebrities have taken to their social media platforms to express their grief and concerns.
On September 20, Nollywood actress Iyabo Ojo led a sizable group of protesters to the Lagos House of Assembly, calling on lawmakers to address the mysterious death.
Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State has invited the Department of State Services (DSS) to participate in the investigation into Mohbad’s passing. He stated, “I would like to assure everyone that I am not oblivious to the sad passing of Ilerioluwa Oladimeji Imole Aloba (Mohbad).
We have been closely working behind the scenes with relevant authorities and keenly following the ongoing investigations.”
The Lagos State Police Command has also formed a 13-man special investigation team to delve into the mysterious death. Police Commissioner Idowu Owohunwa emphasized their commitment to identifying and bringing to justice anyone connected to Mohbad’s death.
Despite these actions, many youths remain skeptical and emphasize the need for concrete reforms, not just words.
Since Mohbad’s passing, videos and images have surfaced depicting how he was allegedly bullied, beaten, and humiliated, leading to claims that he lived in constant fear.
The primary individuals accused in these allegations are former label boss Azeez Fashola, known as Naira Marley, and Samson Erinfolami Balogun, known as Sam Larry. Both have since left the country.
Nigerians and celebrities fear that the case may be swept under the rug and have taken to their social media platforms to express disappointment in the country’s justice system.
Mohbad’s story embodies the saying, “Every day for the thief, one day for the owner.” While many individuals have faced similar fates, perhaps even more brutal ones, it only takes one incident to spark a revolution.
It’s worth noting that Mohbad filed a petition on June 27, 2023, alleging that Sam Larry and 15 others, armed, had disrupted a video shoot where he and another artist, Zlatan Ibile, were working.
As protests for justice continue following Mohbad’s tragic death, a troubling narrative emerges – “The bullied and the bully” within the music industry and Nigeria as a whole.
This revelation sheds light on the darker side of entertainment, where young artists often find themselves caught between pursuing their dreams and oppressive forces seeking to exploit their talents.
It underscores the urgent need for reforms that protect artists and individuals from exploitation and ensure that cases like this do not go unpunished.
Candlelight processions have been held in Mohbad’s honor, drawing support from famous Nigerian artists, celebrities, and youths. The gatherings demand justice for the deceased and an end to persecution and intimidation.
However, a demonstration at Lekki Tollgate led to police dispersing the crowd, sparking a renewed fire in the hearts of Nigerian youths reminiscent of the 2020 #EndSARS protests.
While protests gain momentum on social media, it remains to be seen whether this chapter will lead to meaningful reform.
Nevertheless, one thing is evident – the spirit of resilience and hope continues to burn brightly in the hearts of Nigerian youths.
Tributes continue to pour in for Mohbad, serving as a poignant reminder that the voices of Nigerian youths cannot be silenced.