By Saheed Ojubanire
The event was the 7th annual Ayeloyun Day Celebration organised by veteran Islamic music star, Alhaji Qamardeen Odunlami popularly known as Ayeloyun. The date was Sunday, September 6, 2015, and the venue was the Combo Hall, LTV 8, Agidingbi, Ikeja, Lagos. Usually, the event provides a platform for up and coming Islamic music stars to showcase their talents to teeming music fans who always gather at the yearly fiesta to savour different styles of Islamic music from both raw and refined talents.
As expected, the tradition of creating avenue for emerging talents to exhibit themselves was maintained by the organisers at this year’s edition as so many artistes had their first taste of a big stage, but there was a surprise dimension to it before the event came to an end. One may describe what eventually unfolded as a ‘Surprise Package’ like the title of an Islamic music joint which sold like hot cakes sometime ago.
Good followers of recent development in the Islamic music industry cannot be unaware of the fact that the Islamic music association which used to be known strictly as Islamic Musicians’ Association of Nigeria (ISMAN) has been fictionalized with a splinter group that just came out of ISMAN now known as Professional Islamic Musicians’ Association of Nigeria (PISMAN).
Meanwhile, in the leadership of ISMAN are the likes of their outgoing president and veteran musician, Alhaji Wasiu As-Sideeq, as well as Alhaji Mumeen Damilola and Alhaja Ameenat Babalola aka Omotayebi. While the people in the vanguard of PISMAN include Alhaji Ahmad Alawiye, who is their President General, Alhaja Modinat Ashabi Barrytide, the Ameera and Alhaji Ibraheem Labaika, the Chief Missioner, who was not at the event.
It is important to state that since the fictionalization of the association, members of the two groups had avoided one another like the plague while the media has been awash with allegations and counter allegations of misdeeds emanating from the two camps to discredit each other. And some of the dirty linen they were bringing out to wash in the public should have rather been laundered in the secluded corners of their bathrooms.
Meanwhile, the recently held Ayeloyun Day Celebration strangely brought the two factions together in a tensed atmosphere which was not devoid of a mild drama for those who could decipher happenings at the celebration. It is important to add that the desire to lure Ayeloyun, who had been publicly neutral to the two factions into either of the opposing folds was what obviously attracted the leadership of the factions to the event.
But unfortunately, the two factions were met with a shocking disappointment when during his performance, Ayeloyun declared that he was not ready to join either of the two factions but would go on with his own group which had remained underground until that day. So, Ayeloyun used the opportunity to announce his own group called Muslim Entertainers and Performing Artistes’ Forum Of Nigeria (MEPAFON) within the Islamic music industry. And that has technically brought the number of factions in their industry to three.
However, Ayeloyun added to his declaration that the factionalization into the initial two became a thing of serious embarassment to him such that he came to the conclusion not to belong to either of the two factions. Hence, his decision to float his own group. He also hinted that if the two factions later fuse into one, he may reconsider joining them but would definitely remain friends with members from both camps.
After the two sides had absorbed the Ayeloyun shock, the event later continued with musical performance as Omotayebi was invited to the stage from ISMAN to give her performance which was not devoid of abusive innuendos against PISMAN. And immediately after her, Ahmad Alawiye was called to the stage to perform from PISMAN and his message was loaded with a punchy parable against the leadership of ISMAN, before he later soften it with the claim that he was still loyal to Alhaji Wasiu As-Sideeq.
However, before the event spiralled into the foregoing drama, popular cleric, Sheikh Alfulany had been the anchor who navigated the course activities which included presentation of Special Recognition awards to some individuals and the talent exhibition by new artiste, the high-point of which was a very exciting Islamic Apala rendered by an artiste known as Kayefi who sat on a chair like Haruna Ishola, as well as new Islamic hip hop sensation, High Bois 2.
There was so much for guests to eat and drink at the well organised event, and by the time people began to leave the venue later in the evening, one could tell from the looks on their faces that they were already looking forward to next year’s edition.
Journalist and writer
Different Stroke Media.
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