ROBBERS ON RAMPAGE THEY ARE AFTER OUR JEEPS’-TUFACE, RUGGEDMAN
His popular slogan is Nothing dey happen but the multiple award winning hip-hop sensation, Tuface Idibia, knows too well that many things have happened to him. Only a few weeks ago, the artiste lost his new Range Rover Sports Utility Jeep to armed robbers in Anthony area of Lagos.
This happened exactly four months after surviving a robbery attack shortly after returning from the United Kingdom (UK) where he had gone to receive the 2007 MOBO award for the Best African Act of the year.
Indeed, the frequent robbery onslaught on the musician has now become a major issue in the music industry.
While many of his admirers have asked him to relocate from Nigeria, ostensibly to avoid his assailants, others have blamed the incessant attacks on Tuface and other music celebrities on the porous security system in Nigeria.
The latter was vindicated recently when another top entertainer in Nollywood, Uche Jombo, had her RAV 4 Jeep snatched by some ruthless bandits in front of her house at Yaba. The incident happened barely two weeks after Idibia's thus marking the beginning of a new year on a sour note for the artistes.
But while Jumbo was lucky to have retrieved her car, Idibia has not been that lucky.
And when confronted recently about the stolen Jeep, Tuface who regretted the incident simply declined comments.
Also Ruggedman, another hip-hop crooner could have lost his newly bought Touareg Jeep to armed robbers but for providence. The musician was said to have been the target of robbers a few weeks back in Lagos but that he managed to escape being attacked.
In the same vein, popular Nollywood actress, Jennifer Eliogu, was recently held hostage by armed bandits along the busy Lekki expressway. After rough-handling her and damaging her car, the robbers made away with money and other valuables.
But the frequent attacks on Idibia and his colleagues notwithstanding, the musician said he would not just stop doing what he knows best. Only recently in Lagos, MTN Xtracool and Dojoes Management announced their decision to partner with Tuface Idibia on a musical tour of six cities in Nigeria.
The artiste, however, chose the Sheraton Hotel, Ikeja, venue of the media briefing to explain his two sides. According to him, when people see him, they can only see the outside but when they move closer to him, they would see the inside.
After explaining his interest in the project, Tuface, fielding questions from journalists also exposed a bit of his “ inside.”
MTN Tour with Tuface
The tour is basically to celebrate music and to showcase some very talented young guys as well as spread the message of love. I have set up a foundation, 2face Foundation, with the support of my friends, and we have been looking for partners that will share our vision of creating opportunities for the poor but talented Nigerian youths. We met Femi of Dojoes Management and when they approached MTN, I was happy to learn that MTN agreed to sponsor the idea of a national tour. As we tour the cities, (Abuja, Kaduna, Benin, Enugu, Ibadan and Lagos) we will introduce new acts and expose them and by the grace of God, they would hit stardom and become another Tuface or something bigger, good for them.
Keke and D-One
Oh! they are in the US for the Grammy Awards. They are definitely going to be part of the show. As for my contract with Kennis Music, we are still working together. We signed a three-year contract in 2004. It expired last year but we are still doing some things together. It might not exactly be the same kind of contract but it's still something solid or strong.
I am not a Jack of all trade. Definitely, it's not that I will be in charge of the day-to-day running of Hyperteck. I have learnt some things and I think I have a little knowledge. The accounting and managing of artistes, no be me go do am. I have a couple of artistes on Hyperteck Entertainment who we are going to release very soon. We have Da Natives, we have Rocksteady, W4 and Mallam Spicy are fresh guys. They are going to come out very strong. I'm working on my new album as well.
Bob Marley's post-humous birthday concert
It's a good thing that they recognized me. And I think it is because my music is doing well in Jamaica right now. It also shows that the music industry in Nigeria is growing. Many musicians are doing well now; from the artistes to the managers, the dancers. It's growing bigger and better by the day, I hope everything gets organised.
Encouraging younger artistes
I don't even know many of them. But when you ask them, they'll tell you Tuface inspired them. Tuface gave me the courage and confidence; Tuface gave me the idea on how to play music like this. And there's quite a lot of people that I have collaborated with. Like I mentioned, the tour is a project I stand by and I pray it will help our youths to be more positive in everything they do.
Your jeep was stolen, true?
Yeah my car was snatched at Anthony, Ikeja.
Do you suspect anybody?
Na long story. I no fit gist you any story. But they snatch am for Anthony. I don't even want to talk about it. I'm not really feeling good about it.
Collaboration with R-Kelly
Yeah, I did a song with him. The song is being mixed and mastered right now. Nobody has heard it yet but it' going to come out in my next album.
Three women pregnant for Tuface
My own be say, I be human being; I dey live my life. That's what maters to me.
Are you denying or confirming the rumours?
I am not confirming or denying anything. Anyhow they think it. My own is I don't disturb anybody, so make nobody disturb me. I no talk anything; I just live am like that.
But on TV, we hear you preach about, don't you use it yourself?
If I say use am na good thing I talk now, protect yourself. How you take know say I no dey use am. You know whether whatever happen, may be na me want am to be like so.
When is Tuface getting married?
I never know yet o.