The sad story of the late talented upcoming musician, Mohbad will definitely change the terrain in the Nigerian music industry. The social media and traditional news platform have been talking about his untimely death even as netizens are pointing accusing fingers at his record label management, Marlian music and its owner, Azeez Adeshina Fashola known as Naira Marley. The musician and his gang-like associates were allegedly accused of causing his eventual death by victimizing Mohbad after he made his intention known of leaving the Marlian music label last year.
Ilerioluwa Mohbad Aloba, who also calls himself Imole (meaning candle light in Yoruba) died on September 12, 2023 having passed through an unpleasant phase and experienced depression, on account of the things he must have been through, struggling to survive as an independent artiste, after leaving Marlian Music unceremoniously in 2022. His distraught family decided to bury the 27-year old within two days of his demise, even in a coffin that could hardly contain his corpse.
Not much is known on the reasons Mohbad dumped the Marlian music after three years of being signed to the label that gave him fame with attendant luxury- good life, cars, befitting accommodation, women, multiple fans and a platform to realize his dream of being a music star. The grapevine says that Mohbad was being coerced perhaps to deepen his loyalty to the controversial singer, Naira Marley and his music empire by being involved with unwholesome and unethical practices of taking oaths and joining a cult like group to belong among the who is who in the music industry. But if Mohbad had dishonoured the contract he signed with the Marlian music, shouldn’t he face the music and cope with losing his priviledges, rights and royalties within the arm bit of the laws that govern music business? If Mohbad was victimized physically and mentally, did he involve his lawyer as a former signee to a record label entity or report to the appropriate quarters (law enforcement agents) or his parents who should have sought amicable solution to the matter between him and the record label?
The public outrage and calls for #justiceforMohbad trended on social media platforms, accompanied by physical protests made by irate youths and colleagues in industry in different cities even as the Nigeria Police Force, led by the Lagos State Commissioner of Police, CP Abiodun Alabi and the Department of State Security (DSS) early last week as instructed by state government, opened a series of investigation into what led to death of the 27-year old music talent, with an autopsy carried out.
More Troubles For Naira Marley
As a result of the uproar and condemnation of maltreatment of the musician in the hands of Marlian music label and its henchmen, it was gathered that Naira Marley’s music videos were removed from the playlists of MTV Base, Soundcity and other popular music TV channels. Naira Marley who was said to have lost more than 500,000 Instagram followers as at the last count, also had his music banned by radio stations like Splash FM, Fresh FM, Island FM, Okin FM, Divine, Agidigbo.
According to Sahara Reporters, over 1800 persons had signed a petition, demanding Marlian Records to release recently accumulated revenues from Mohbad’s songs after his demise. But Naira Marley has absolved himself and his music label of having a hand in death of his former signee. The controversial musician who has had cases in the past of wire and credit card fraud while residing in the United Kingdom, is presently not in the country, noted that it was sad that a young talent such as Mohbad would die in such manner and he urged the police to investigate the matter and unravel the cause.
On Thursday, Naira Marley who had been summoned by men of the Nigeria Police Force gave conditions on what will make him turn in himself for investigation Over MohBad’s Death. The music label reiterated his innocence in Mohbad’s case, and stated he return to the country on request if his safety were guaranteed. Marley also clarified that Mohbad had left Marlian Music in 2022 and had been pursuing his music independently. He denied being involved in neither occult practices nor his label, stating that he had actively distanced himself from such groups.
The Lagos State Police Command on Thursday has arrested Lagos socialite, Balogun Eletu aka Sam Larry for his involvement in the threats, victimization meted to Mohbad. The Police Public Relations Officer in Lagos State, Benjamin Hundenyin stated, “Autopsy has been concluded and we wait the results in stages in the following weeks”. The nurse who reportedly injected Mohbad before his untimely death on Tuesday, September 12, 2023 was also arrested and questioned.
Early Beginning of IleriOluwa Aloba
Indeed the story of Promise IleriOluwa Aloba is an emotional-laden one, such that Nollywood can rake revenue from its story. Mohbad grew up in a popular Ikorodu suburb of Lagos and learnt carpentry from his father.
The higher institution he enrolled in after attending Abifab College in Ikorodu is not ascertained as at the time of filing this report. Our correspondent had contacted the Public Relation Officer of Lagos State University of Science And Technology (LASUSTECH) formerly of LASPOTECH, Mr Kuye on whether Mohbad was once a student of the institution but his response was that they do not have his record as one of their students. Though it was learnt, IleriOluwa dropped out of school for the love of pursuing a career in music just like other music greats and senior colleagues.
Born on June 8, 1996 to Mr & Mrs. Joseph Aloba, Ilerioluwa Oladimeji Aloba was a bundle of Joy as second child and showed signs of interest in music at infancy. His father who is a Pastor was reported to have personally drove MohBad to his recording session showing his strong commitment to his son’s musical career. According to Abifab college principal, Mr Abidemi Faboye, the young lad was reserved but intelligent and learnt carpentry from his father, Pastor Aloba.The principal noted in an interview with another newspaper that Mohbad who was known as Imole while in secondary school, had displayed maturity beyond his age. He excelled in his studies and cleared his National Examination Council (NECO) subjects in 2015 at one sitting.
His Music And Essence
Mohbad was a versatile Nigerian artiste as a rapper, singer, and songwriter. He rose to fame through his association with Naira Marley’s Marlian Records but left the label in 2022. MohBad’s career was marked by hit singles like “Ponmo” and “Feel Good,” but it was his collaboration with Rexxie on “KPK (Ko Por Ke)” that propelled him to stardom earning him three Headies Awards nominations in 2022.
Music, they say is the soul of life. But it has a spiritual layer containing sound (melody) and lyrics (words). Did Mohbad speak about his death? Rappers as well as musicians who are both soulish and spiritual beings often get inspirations to sing out a prophecy, a warning to people or a nation. Fela, Bob Marley, Majek Fashek who have all passed beyond this early veil all had songs that spoke about the future. Listening to some of Mobhad’s lyrically beautiful song like ‘SORRY’ talked about his struggles and how he felt disconnected from his mum, whom she needed most after his parent had separated. The lyrics of ‘Sorry’ in part Yoruba language reads: “This kind life e tire me Eshi biri biri ke bo mi o Iwaju loloko yi wa mi’lo eyin sa loloko yí wa mi’lo Mi o mo
Mummy just dey pray Daddy just dey pray for me
Make e better for me Me I no go school Only thing I fit do Music me I choose
Like Dagrin Like Mohbad
The Nigerian music industry has not been this emotional on the loss of a music sensation, Mohbad. Perhaps the last time, the music industry mourned this way was when Dagrin, another indigenous rapper died after a ghastly motor accident in 2010. According to music enthusiasts, Oladapo Olaitan Olaonipekun, (Dagrin’s name) was about to hit international fame when he passed on at the age of 26. Dagrin had sustained grave injuries, ramming his new car into a parked stationary truck at Mushin, Lagos. Like Dagrin, like Mohbad; the Nigerian music industry just like the CEO of Chocolate City Group, Abuchi Peter Ugwu said in an interview on LEADERSHIP TV Podcast, that the industry may have lost a potential music export, Mohbad who was set for stardom. The likes of Davido, Olamide, Samklef, Falz and other celebs, had eulogized him. Olamide, arguably the king of Yoruba rap genre has released a song in memory of Mohbad just as Portable also released ‘Alimi’ this week.