By Eric Elezuo
Has it become a norm that each time popular singer, Azeez Fashola, aka Naira Marley, is mentioned in the news, it will definitely be for the wrong reasons. That may not be completely true however.
Just last weekend, the self styled president of Marlians, was again involved in a crisis with both the authorities of the Federal Capital Territory Administration and the management of Executive Jets, a privately owned airline operation services.
On Saturday, the singer in company of ten members of his traveling crew were ferried from Lagos to Abuja to perform at Jabi Lake. The performance was against federal government laid down rules of social distancing and public gathering. Consequently, the event place has been locked up by government while the license of Executive Jets was suspended.
In their bid to defend their actions, the management of the airline tendered an apology letter, signed by its chairman, Sam Iwuajoku, to the FCT government wherein they called Marley and his crew ‘bunch of useless people’. In retaliation, and justifiable so, Marley has vowed not to patronise the airline, which he also described as ‘useless’ again.
The worst of it all is that the government has threatened to arrest the singer, and if they make do their threat, it will become the umpteenth time he will be visiting the office of the law enforcement agency.
Recall that in March 2019, Naira Marley first made the headlines when he shared a particular post on his Instagram page to defend internet fraudsters. Not a few celebrities gave him the backlash.
Undeterred, he released the record ‘Am I A Yahoo Boy’ which though became a hit led to his arrest in the early hours of Friday, May 10 2019 by men of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for internet fraud.
His trial was talk of the town, and even promoted his brand as fans storm the court premises to catch a glimpse of him. He spent some days in prison, and was granted bail shortly after. He return to public made him an instant hit.
In December of the same year, Naira Marley was again accused of car theft. The singer and his brothers were accused of stealing a Toyota Camry and iPhone from one Mr Adelekan Ademola.
He was arraigned among others, but was later pardoned after an apology letter was tendered to the Lagos State Government.
Naira Marley is adored by his teeming fans for his effortless production of likeable rhythm, but has he at any time fallen on the right side of the law? He has remained as anti-government as he is anti-law with his group reputed as ‘lawless’ and group of people ‘wey no get respect’.
His misdemeanors notwithstanding, Marley can hold his head as one of the musicians, if not the only one so far, who has held a successful virtual concert for his fans. It is absolutely obvious that he has the interest of his fans and teeming supporters at heart.
Controversial may be the right name for Naira Marley as this time, but it is imperative to note that though Naira Marley may be popular, he is still far from being famous. Of course, fame, no doubt, is within his reach. He is not only highly talented but also highly educated to attain it.