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Nature and providence have away of bringing some exceptional people our way. In  the course of our life’s journey, with these people, you navigate the trajectory of purpose.
Gbenga Adeyinka, Grand Comedian of the Federal Republic, GCFR, a colossus, an incurable addict of success, a protagonist of dedication and hard work, a highly resourceful and dependable man, a humble jolly good fellow, a tireless visionary and an incredibly funny man.
Today, Monday, May 7, he joins the gracious league of the quinquagenrians, the golden 50!
Many up and coming entertainers hungry to cut their teeth in the entertainment industry have always quizzed the older generation with the question, ‘What is the way up the ladder of success in the industry”, or “what is the secret of consistency and staying relevant in the show-biz?”.
Dear friends, I present to you, ‘Gbenga, a breathing compendium of doggedness, astuteness, humility and of how staying original takes you up the cadre and keeps you up there’.
Gbenga and I have been friends for close to two decades.We met about a time I was putting up an event. He approached me and offered to host my show free of charge. That singular act of selflessness thrilled and warmed me to Gbenga.
The level of our closeness way back made some persons speculate that I was probably his manager. The bond I share with this man is beyond being friends, he has become lfraternal.
Writing about Adeyinka, this multi talented man at 50, may not exactly be very easy, but having known him from when his career was just taking off to now that he has become a brand to reckon with on the Nigerian entertainment scene, I should be qualified to assert that what stands this special man out is his strength of character and humility.
So many success stories in the entertainment industry, the comedy industry especially aren’t complete without a mention of his name in their journey at some points or the other. He is noteworthy for mentoring quite a number of next generation of comedians, and also pitch them for jobs he is not available to handle himself, ‘not too many established acts do that’s.
While Gbenga was leaving Unilag, popular comedian and compere Tee A had just gotten into Unilag at the time, even though Tee A was already a name to be reckoned with, Gbenga was instrumental to his joining the famous Theatre 15 group back then, and also assisted Tee A with publicity for his first show.
A thorough business man, Gbenga’s human relations skills are exceptional, he is great at engaging his clients and knows how to retain them. There are families here in Nigeria that Gbenga has been compere for the wedding of (almost) all their children.
He has a knack for keeping to time, Gbenga arrives events where he is billed to perform way ahead of time, and even joins the organizers in the last minutes arrangements for the event. These are rear qualities.
A fine gentle man, and committed family man with a sizzling marriage of over 25years, not many know that Gbenga already has two kids who are graduates of Covenant University, and a third who is prepping to leave the University too from Babcock.
While congratulating my good friend on this momentous occasion, I pray that the creator grants him good health, and the privilege to continue to be relevant in the scheme of things on the Nigerian Entertainment landscape and beyond.
Seun Oloketuyi A proud Igbemo man writes is COO at Best of Nollywood Awards

BIG STORY

Rape: IGP Orders Probe Of Policemen Who Arrested D’Banj’s Accuser

Gbemileke Ajayi

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The Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, has ordered the probe of the policemen who allegedly arrested Seyitan Babatayo, the lady that accused musician Oladapo Oyebanjo aka D’Banj of rape.

The IGP gave the order in a letter dated June 25, 2020, with reference number CZ:7050/IGP.SEC/ABJ/Vol. 132/978 signed on his behalf by his Principal Staff Officer, DCP Idowu Owohunwa.

The letter is titled, ‘Re: Petition Against Inspector Abraham, Supol Ugowe and the Entire Police Officers Team at Ikeja, Lagos Division of the Inspector General of Police’

The letter, which was addressed to the Deputy Inspector-General of Police, Force Criminal Investigation Department, Garki, read in part, “I forward forthwith a copy of a letter dated June 18, 2020, with its attachment received from Ojoge, Omileye and Partners on the above subject.

“I am to respectfully convey the directive of the Inspector-General of Police that you deal with.”

The PUNCH reports that the letter of the IG was the sequel to a petition written by Seyitan’s lawyer, Ojoge, Omileye and Partners, last week.

In the petition, it was alleged that policemen attached to the Intelligence Response Team arrested Seyitan on the directive of D’Banj and detained her for over 24 hours.

It was alleged that she was denied access to her lawyers, her phone was seized and she faced psychological torture in the hands of the policemen.

The petition read in part, “On Tuesday, June 16, 2020, our client was picked up alongside a friend, Favour, at her residence in Lagos by the officers of the Ikeja IGP IRT. The arrest was without any warrant and neither our client nor her friend, Favour, was informed of the reasons for their arrest.

“According to our client, she was told to write a statement denying ever meeting with Mr. Oyebanjo (D’Banj) and to also state that she lied against the person of Mr. Oyebanjo. In actual fact, our client was about to write the statement which she believed would be a basis for her release when the counsel came in and stopped her from writing such a statement.

“The counsel further informed the policemen that all actions to the alleged rape of our client in December 2018 by Mr. Oyebanjo have been transferred to the DIG FCID for a thorough investigation and that they need to stay the action.”

The counsel was said to have told the policemen to release his client and he would bring her back to the station whenever the need arose.

According to the petition, the policemen, however, argued that Seyitan had not yet spent 24 hours in custody and as such, they could continue to hold her.

After hours of pleading, the lawyer was said to have left the police station to return the next day.

The lawyer, Tommy Ojoge-Daniel, alleged that D’Banj’s Manager, Damien Okoroafor, was physically present at the police office the next day.

He said by Okoroafor’s instigation, the police refused to release Seyitan and threatened to approach a magistrate court to obtain a remand order to detain Seyitan for two weeks.

The petition read, “On Wednesday, June 17, 2020, the counsel went to the station as early as 7 am with a formal application for bail which was received at the admin section of the station and presented to the officers in charge of the IGP IRT.

“The process for the bail had started when one Damien Okoroafor who we latterly knew to be the manager of Mr. Oyebanjo came in and started ordering the officers of the Ikeja IGP IRT around and this made the officers retrace their steps and inform our client that they will not release her on bail.

“They said they were in the process of obtaining a warrant from a magistrate to detain our client for 14 days. The formal bail application was thereafter confiscated by the officers of the IGP IRT and the counsel was forced to release the acknowledged copy of the bail application to the officers of the IGP at the most unimagined duress.”

He said Seyitan was forced to delete all social media posts she had made about D’Banj and also make a public statement absolving D’Banj of rape which she did to gain her freedom.

Seyitan had accused D’Banj of raping her in Glee Hotel, Lagos in December 2018.

The kokomaster, however, denied the allegation and demanded an apology and N100m from his accuser.

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BIG STORY

JUST IN: Reality TV Show BBNaija Season 5 Premieres July 19

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DSTV has announced July 19 as the official date for season five of the much anticipated Big Brother Naija Season 5.

This was announced on the official twitter handle of the reality TV show. The most anticipated season is here!!! 📣📣📣 Season 5 of the popular TV reality show in Africa, Big Brother Naija, will premiere Sunday, 19 July 2020!

Ebuka Uchendu also tweeted:

Earlier in May, the management of the reality show announced the opening for video submissions for the upcoming season 5 of the show.

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ENTERTAINMENT

Lavolta Stars Releases New Single ‘Wetin Dey Occur’

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Popular Afrocentric band, Lavolta Stars, has a new single out titled Wetin Dey Occur, which dropped on Friday, June 26, 2020.

According to the band leader, Kayode Awokoya, the new single was inspired by the need to soothe the world’s pain as a result of the novel coronavirus.

“Just like everyone else, we were heavily jolted by what befell the world with the COVID-19 pandemic. People dying, countries closing their borders and shutting down, economies collapsing, hunger, poverty, people going into isolation, and social distancing; we were virtually living worse than animals.

“The stars including our management and record label decided we do something to bring relief, hope, and succour to the world through music and the idea of our hit single, Wetin Dey Occur was born.

“Our single is a fusion of Afrobeat and Highlife, delivered in a melodious vibe to help soothe the pains the world is going through due to this very highly destructive pandemic. Just like we echoed in our song, Edumare press reset o (Meaning that God should press reset button over the pandemic).

Wetin Dey Occur, which simply translated What’s Going On, is available on music stores worldwide and available through this link (https://lavoltastars.fanlink.to/WetinDeyOccur).

The band was excited for the new release, posting on their social media handle, “Enjoy a snippet of our new single titled Wetin Dey Occur. It’s our little way of bringing hope to a world ravaged by COVID-19. Edumare Press Reset.

“These are our guys, Lavolta Stars, on another level. It’s massive, a chart breaker, game changer!”

Awokoya, who was full of appreciation to the management and record label, stated that the support was massive to the success of the production.

“Our record label has been super supportive, caring, and committed to our career and success; we couldn’t have asked for any better.”

Aside from Awokoya, who is the Lavolta Stars’ bandleader, the group is made up of other six members, namely Sunday Okpo, Femi Omisakin, and Daniel Lombin Ogheneochuko.

Others are Tosin Adefeso, Dare Faduyi, and Gbadegun Samson Oluwaseyi.

Lavolta Stars is an assemblage of seasoned and dynamic musicians and instrumentalists with the passion and drive for quality music. The band was formed back in 2017 with the sole aim of providing good music.

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