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I Almost Dumped Music For Lecturing — Legendary Fuji Musician, Adewale Ayuba

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Popular Fuji musician, Adewale Ayuba, has said he chose Jesus Christ because he proclaimed, ‘I am the truth, the way, and the life.

He also revealed how he almost gave up his interest in music, relocated to America, and became a citizen of the United States.

Ayuba, in a chat with Teju Babyface on Tuesday, where he spoke about his career, religion, and marriage, disclosed that he and his band member travelled to America for their three-month summer show in 1995, but could not return to Nigeria due to threats from late military head of state, Sani Abacha.

The singer said he was threatened by the military government after he released an album advocating for the freedom of political detainees, particularly the late Moshood Abiola.

The Fuji star said while in the US, he enrolled in school and almost gave up interest in music to pursue a career in academics.

Ayuba said after Abacha’s demise, he returned to Nigeria to perform at the Benson and Hedges Concert in 1998.

“I left for America with my full band members in 1995 for a summer show and others. We came to America for about three months and then returned to Nigeria.

“I returned to Nigeria in 1998 when Abacha died. The three years I stayed in America were by the grace of God because he is a good planner.

“When I was in America, I realised that I could only perform shows on weekends. My Mondays to Fridays were free. So, I enrolled in school. That was where I met my wife.

“After that, I took part in a lot of activities. Doing so was like building another foundation in America. That was not easy. From there, I completed my documentation and became an American citizen.

“I don’t see myself continuing in Fuji music, I believe I have done well. This is America, there’s more to explore in life, trusting that God has a plan,” he said.

Speaking about his decision to convert from Islam to Christianity, Ayuba revealed that his decision was because he wanted “to be closer to God more than anything” but didn’t understand Arabic and was unable to pray in the language.

This, he said, prevented him from practising Islam, adding that he would always invite clerics to pray on his behalf.

He also said he was inspired by verses from the Bible quoting Jesus Christ as saying, “He is the way, truth, and life”.

Ayuba said the day he became a Christian was the happiest day of his life.

He explained that he prefers to worship where he “feels closest to God”, and that his choice of becoming a Christian “brings me happiness”.

“People claim Ayuba is a Muslim. Have they seen me in the mosque? If I were practising Islam, wouldn’t someone have noticed,” he said.

“Why is this an issue? Can they let me be? They say I should pray five times daily, but I’m not. My mother is an Alhaja, and although my father never went to Mecca, we practice Islam at home.

“So, my name is Ayub, which is Job in the Bible. It’s not that being a Muslim is good or bad. When I was practising Islam, I had to call some Chief Imams and Alfas to help me talk to God because I didn’t understand Arabic.

“I then asked myself, am I going to continue this, despite all that God has done for me, needing others to intercede on my behalf?

“There isn’t an album of mine where I haven’t referenced Muslim words. We all worship God. To me, religion is akin to education.

“I chose Jesus Christ because he proclaimed, ‘I am the truth, the way, and the life’. This is my personal choice, and it brings me happiness.

“Many of my band members are Muslims, and we pray together. I was unable to attend Arabic school due to my profession. I prefer to worship where I feel closest to my God.”

On his music career, Ayuba who said his parent were not favourably disposed to him going into music and entertainment, explained that he opted for Fuji music because the cost to acquire the instruments was invariably low compared to other kinds of music.

He said, “My parents didn’t want me to go close to entertainment talk less of singing because they believed once you’re doing this kind of thing, you would not be a good child anymore, you would be smoking, drinking and all atrocities. They come with that kind of business and I know that I have the talent.

“To acquire the instrument is just like peanuts, all you need is local drums, you don’t need a keyboard or guitar, so it’s easier to go into that kind of music. My parents were not ready to send me to music school. That was the reason I went into Fuji music.”

Asked if truly he almost lost interest in Fuji music, Ayuba confirmed, saying, “True, true true, particularly the kind of genre that I met myself singing Fuji. I’ve started developing a kind of interest in my education. From day one, if anybody asked me what would I wanted to become in life, I would love to become a lecturer or teacher. I can’t lie to you.

“I was thinking if I finished my bachelor’s degree, I would go for my master, and P.hD to be a lecturer. I don’t want the level of being a Fuji musician, I believe I’ve done well, and I’m OK, this is America, let me choose another line.”

Speaking of his dedication to marriage, Ayuba said he met his wife in America and remained committed to his union because he feared God and would live by His rule.

“Marriage is ordained by God and once you’ve decided to go into it, you obey the rules; the rules that come from God. They say, ‘The fear of God is the beginning of wisdom’, so if I do anything contrary to the rules of marriage, it will affect my career and everything. I’m not going to offend my wife, I’m not going to offend my God, that is it,” he said.

Ayuba released his first album, ‘Ibere (Beginning)’ in 1986, but said he began his music career as early as when he was seven years old.

The 59-year-old singer is famous for albums such as ‘Bubble’, ‘Turn Me On’, ‘Ijo Fuji’, and ‘Koloba Koloba’.

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Nigeria’s Foreign Reserves Now $37bn, Up By $2bn In 18 Days — CBN Governor Cardoso

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The country’s foreign exchange reserves have surged to $37.05 billion as of July 18 according to the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).

CBN Governor Yemi Cardoso announced this development during a press briefing on Tuesday, following the 296th Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) meeting in Abuja.

The reserves experienced a significant boost, rising by $2.35 billion from $34.70 billion at the end of June to $37.05 billion in just 18 days.

“As of July 18, 2024, external reserves stood at US$37.05 billion, compared with US$34.70 billion as of June 2024. This represents 11 months of import cover for goods and services,” Cardoso said.

However, according to data published by CBN and seen by TheCable, Nigeria’s foreign reserves stood between $35.93 billion as of July 18, and $36.23 billion as of July 22, less than what Cardoso presented.

On July 18, CBN approved the sale of foreign exchange (FX) to eligible bureau de change (BDC) operators at N1,450 per dollar to meet the demand for invisible transactions.

Days after, CBN said foreign currencies worth $106.5 million were sold to authorised dealers.

CBN said the aim is to improve supply in the FX market in tandem with its price stability mandate.

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President Tinubu Signs South-East, North-West Development Commission Bills Into Law

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President Bola Tinubu has officially signed into law the South-East and North-West Development Commission bills.

The South-East Development Commission bill was sponsored by Deputy Speaker Benjamin Kalu, who represents the Bende Federal Constituency of Abia State.

After passing through the Senate and House of Representatives, the bill was transmitted to the President in June for his assent.

With the signing of the bill into law, the Commission will now receive funding to execute various projects in the South-East geopolitical zone.

The allocated funds will be used to address environmental challenges such as erosion, as well as reconstruct and rehabilitate roads in Abia, Enugu, Ebonyi, Imo, and Anambra states.

This move is expected to bring significant development and infrastructure improvements to the region.

In a statement issued by Levinus Nwabughiogu, his chief press secretary, Kalu expressed appreciation to the president for signing the bill into law.

The deputy speaker said the commission will “rehabilitate Igbo land” and foster unity among the people.

Tinubu also signed the north-west development commission bill into law.

Jibrin Barau, deputy senate president and sponsor of the bill, said the signing of the proposed legislation is a “testament” to Tinubu’s “commitment to addressing the challenges facing the north-west geopolitical zone and indeed all parts of the country”.

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Wike Urges Nigerians To Be Patient With FG, Says Planned Protest Political

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Nyesom Wike, Minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), has dismissed the upcoming nationwide protest as a politically motivated move.

Speaking to journalists on Tuesday during an inspection of the Karshi to Apo Road construction project, Wike expressed his views on the planned protest.

The youth-led protest, scheduled to begin on August 1, aims to draw attention to the country’s economic hardship and soaring inflation.

However, Wike believes that the protest is driven by political interests rather than a genuine concern for the welfare of Nigerians.

According to Wike, the government is actively working to address the country’s challenges, implying that the protest is unnecessary and potentially disruptive.

His comments suggest that the government is making efforts to mitigate the economic difficulties faced by Nigerians, and that the protest may be an attempt to undermine these efforts.

“Let’s tell ourselves the simple truth. If we are playing politics let’s say we are playing politics; if we want to be sincere to ourselves, let’s be sincere to ourselves and help our country,” NAN quoted Wike as saying.

“The country is rotten. You know that the country is rotten, and a government has just come to see what it can do to at least, move it from where we are to a certain level, and you say that miracle must be performed within one year.

“You are here now, we are talking about a project that was awarded 13 good years ago, what has happened? Nothing.

“Now a government has come to see how it can fix all these things and we are in too much of a hurry demanding that it must be done now.

“It is not possible. The protest is a political protest.”

The minister acknowledged that people are unhappy due to hunger and unemployment.

“So, let’s not listen to political protesters and political jobbers who just want to be popular. You know there are some people who believe that if they don’t criticise, they will not be popular,” he said.

“We are going to elections very soon; these are political gimmicks.

“Just know that the government is a serious government and working to solve the problem.

“We believe that things will turn around, but we should be patient with the government.”

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