With emotions running high, MohBad’s fans – some seen here in Ibadan – want questions answered over his death
Hundreds of fans of Afrobeats star MohBad, who died last week, have taken to the streets of Ibadan and Asaba in Nigeria, calling for justice.
It follows similar protests and an outpouring of grief in other cities across southern Nigeria this week.
The 27-year-old singer, whose real name was Ilerioluwa Aloba, died in hospital in Lagos. The exact circumstances of his death have not been made public.
The Lagos state governor has promised a thorough investigation.
On Tuesday, Babajide Sanwo-Olu tweeted that he had invited the country’s secret police to help find out what had happened to MohBad, asking anyone with information to come forward – but urging his fans to refrain from making inflammatory statements.
A special investigative team has been set up and the body of the singer is to be exhumed for an autopsy.
The hashtag #justiceformohbad has been trending on X, formerly known as Twitter, since the musician’s death on Tuesday, September 12.
With emotions running high, some tributes have suggested the singer had been bullied within the music industry.
Outrage has particularly been directed at his former boss, Naira Marley, with whom he had feuded after he split from the Nigerian musician’s label – Marlian Records – last year.
Naira Marley himself has also called for a thorough investigation into MohBad’s death and pledged to assist with “uncovering any foul play or injustice”.
The singer, who also called himself “Imole” – the Yoruba word for light, was married and had a five-month-old son.
He began to make his name in 2019 thanks to his streetwise, sometimes lewd, relatable lyrics. Fans loved his distinctive baritone voice – he was best known for his hit singles KPK (Ko Por Ke) and Ponmo, which featured musicians Lil Kesh and Naira Marley.
He was with Marlian Records for about two years, helping it live up to its reputation of signing rebellious non-conformists when his Lagos home was raided by anti-drug enforcement agents in February 2022.
He and other musicians were found in possession of the drug MDA and cannabis but they were not charged.
After falling out with Marlian Records, he alleged that his tours were being deliberately sabotaged – sometimes cancelled at the last minute by organisers.
In June, he filed a petition with police in Lagos alleging that Samson Balogun, a music promoter known as Sam Larry, had led a group of armed men to interrupt a video shoot. MohBad alleged he had been assaulted and some of his equipment destroyed.
Mr Balogun denied the allegation and the police say MohBad never followed through with the case. The music promoter has since reiterated that he was not involved, saying he and the singer were on good terms.
Videos of MohBad’s complaints about his relationship with Marlian Records have resurfaced since his death, leading to the groundswell of sorrow and calls from his fans to know more about how he died.
As well as holding marches across southern Nigeria, they have been donating to a fund set up by MohBad’s colleagues for his son Imole.
His fans on social media say similar demonstrations are being planned in Kenya’s capital, Nairobi, and in London in the UK.
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