Nigerian rap sensation, Ikechukwu real name ‘Ikechukwu Onunaku’ was at the weekend a guest judge in the on-going season five of the Nigerian Idol TV Reality Show for the second time ever, where he joined celebrity judges, Dede Mabiaku, Yinka Davies and Darey ‘Art’ Alade to oversee proceedings during the top 4 show.
The tall, dark-skinned rapper who is famous for the hit single, ‘My Name is Ikechukwu’, was an instant hit with the audience who had given him a rapturous welcome following his introduction by Show anchor, Illryhmz.
He later took a break from his judging assignment to entertain the audience with a performance of his latest work ‘Ololo’ featuring Olamide and which recently shot video is enjoying mass viewership.
Ikechukwu showed his understanding of music genre as he was seen time and again critiquing performances by each of the four contestants.
Meanwhile, the fight to stay and contend for the N7.5 million cash prize in the on-going season five of the Nigerian Idol TV Reality Show continued at the weekend with some rounds of musical performances by the four remaining contestants.
The contestants competing for the top prize include the quartet of K-Peace, Preye, Dolu and Nex2.
They had scaled through the last eviction hurdle which claimed Classic Tunez, who had a rather disenchanting and forgettable performance the previous week.
In what appeared like a repeat of last week’s template, the contestants were scheduled on a run of two solo performances from each, and also two duets centred around the themes Social change and Love.
And on a night that expectedly had promised much, only Dolu showed up with such an overwhelmingly convincing performance to the delight of the audience and judges.
The 25 years old from Ondo was a refreshing reminder of Whitney Houston in her prime as she performed the late diva’s hit song, I Will Always Love You.
She had raised the bar for herself in the first round of performances and subsequently salvaged a night filled with inconsistent performances from the other contestants when she rendered Sam Cooke’s A change is gonna Come.
Celebrity Guest Judge, Ikechukwu could not hide his admiration for her performances as he singled her out as the leading light on the night.
And speaking about this while commenting on her rendition of Sam Cooke’s A change is Gonna Come, the rapper confessed to being brought to tears.
“Before you started the song, I had whispered to the judges here that I would like to see if you would do enough with the song to bring out tears from my eyes. And girl, you did that. I can take off my glasses for anyone to see that it is true.
“The performances tonight were great, but someone stood out more than the others. Dolu was just above the others tonight. She is the complete Nigerian Idol we are looking for, this is how I feel. I hope she carries it across with votes,” said Ikechukwu.
Ikechukwu also offered some advice to the contestants, urging them to scale-up on their performances.
He said, “They have to up their game, and to buttress this a bit more, they should relax too because the only way they can up their game is to be able to naturally embody what they are trying to do. It is not just to come and sing.”
Nigerian Idol season 5 is sponsored by Etisalat Nigeria, Payporte, Cool Fm, Tantalizers, Cadbury Nigeria, Zaron, Dabur Toothpaste, So-Klin, ORS and Ellis Suites.
SERAP Kicks as NBC Slams Fines on Channels, AIT, Arise TV
Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP), leading Nigerian rights group, has given the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) 48 hours to cancel the fines imposed on three TV channels over their coverage of #EndSARS protests.
NBC had Monday slammed fines on Channels TV, African Independent Television, AIT, and Arise TV over alleged unprofessional reporting of the #EndSARS protests in the country.
In its reaction, SERAP “condemned the unconstitutional and illegal fines of N9m” and threatened to go to court.
In a statement by Kolawole Oluwadare, deputy director, SERAP said: “This action by the NBC is yet another example of Nigerian authorities’ push to silence independent media and voices.
“The NBC should drop the fines and uphold Nigerian constitution and international obligations to respect and protect freedom of expression and media freedom.
“We will sue the NBC if the unconstitutional fines are not rescinded within 48 hours.”
The organization said: “This is a new low in Nigeria’s protection of freedom of expression, and the ability of independent media to function in the country. The fines are detrimental to media freedom, and access to information, and the NBC must immediately withdraw the decision.
“Media freedom and media plurality are a central part of the effective exercise of freedom of expression and access to information.
“The ability to practice journalism free from undue interference, to cover peaceful protests, and critical views are crucial to the exercise of many other rights and freedoms.”
“The media has a vital role to play as ‘public watchdog’ in imparting information of serious public concern and should not be inhibited or intimidated from playing that role. The NBC should stop targeting and intimidating independent media and voices.”
“President Muhammadu Buhari should caution the NBC to stop intimidating and harassing independent media houses and to respect the Nigerian Constitution 1999 [as amended] and the country’s international human rights obligations, including under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights.”
NBC had earlier at a news conference in Abuja said the three stations did not exhibit professionalism in reporting the #EndSARS protest, especially the shooting at Lekki Tollgate in Lagos.
Prof. Armstrong Idachaba, director general, NBC, accused the stations of airing unverified videos of what transpired during the Lekki Tollgate protest after soldiers were said to have shot at protesters.
The stations were fined between N2 million and N3 million.
NAOSRE Condemns Shooting of Unarmed Protesters at Lekki, Calls for Dialogue
The National Association of Online Security Reporters, NAOSRE, has lent its voice to the global outcry over the unwarranted killings of innocent #End SARS protesters at the Lekki Tollgate in Lagos on Tuesday.
In a statement issued in Lagos by Favour Benson, acting president, the association decried the tensions that have escalated across Nigeria in recent days as violence flared across several cities in the country.
According to Benson, “After a careful analyses of the current security situation in Nigeria, NAOSRE’s empirical deduction is that aggrieved young Nigerians are protesting and agitating for a fundamental change of a clearly decadent political structure that serves only the warped political actors while the country sinks deeper into irretrievable decadence and development inertia.
“However, official comments and body language of government officials are not only a mockery of democratic ethics and ethos but an assault on democracy.
“Notably, NAOSRE abhors the infiltration of the patriotic protests by hoodlums who perpetrated heinous crimes under the cover of #End SARS.
“But the killing of innocent #End SARS protesters at the Lekki Tollgate in Lagos on Tuesday stands condemned. It is more offensive to open fire on Nigerians waving the Nigerian flag.
“We therefore call on President Muhammadu Buhari, the Commander-in-Chief of Nigerian Armed Forces to, immediately, take charge and address the situation before it becomes full blown war.
“We also call on protesting Nigerians to embrace dialogue in the course of the common struggle to arrive at recognizable interests that all Nigerians can identify with,” Benson said.
#EndSARS: NBC Reminds Broadcast Stations of Rules on Coverage of Crisis
National Broadcasting Commission (NBC), has reminded broadcast stations in the country of the rules on coverage of crisis.
This is coming as the #EndSARS protest continues in the country.
The management of the NBC, in a statement issued in Abuja, however said it monitored with keen interest, the coverage and reportage of the on-going protest on the #EndSARS campaign and noted that broadcasters have so far been conscious of their role as gatekeepers and the fourth estate of the realm.
“In specific terms, the commission enjoined broadcasters to take definite note of the following provisions of the Nigeria Broadcasting Code to further guide their broadcast during this challenging time:
“1.3.3 Broadcast technology enables the broadcaster to bring information on issues of concern to the audience with immediacy. In the event of a crisis, the advantages of broadcast technologies may be used, but not in a manner to aggravate the situation or adversely affect those emotionally involved;
“5.4.1 (b) At all times, ensure that the coverage of a disaster or crisis is aimed at the overall public interest, guidance and safety;
“5.4.3 In reporting conflict situations, the broadcaster shall perform the role of a peace agent by adhering to the principle of responsibility, accuracy and neutrality; and
“5.6.2 The broadcaster shall approach with restraints, the use of materials from user generated sources in order not to embarrass individuals, organisations, government or cause disaffection, incite to panic or rift in the society at large,” the NBC said.
The NBC further reiterated that broadcasters have a duty to promote the corporate existence of Nigeria, and the socio-economic well-being of the Nigerian State.
“The Commission urges all broadcasters to continue to provide efficient, professional and comprehensive service to the people based on national objectives and aspirations,” the NBC also said.
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