There is no denying the very fact that one among the highlights of the past week for several Nigerians was the Grammy Award won by afrobeat singers Burna Boy, and Wizkid.
The feats have won both singers commendation from within and out of doors the country.
In an interview with Sunday Scoop, 70-year old maverick entertainer, Charles Oputa, popularly referred to as Charly Boy, stated that he made a ‘prophecy’ 19 years ago that Nigerians would win the Grammy.
He said, “Nineteen years ago, there was no Burna Boy. But, I said people should be careful because Nigerians would begin to win Grammy Awards. I thank God my prediction has been fulfilled in my lifetime. I also predicted that Nigerian songs would go global and our artistes would become unstoppable. I had such a lot of faith in our artistes. I made those predictions once I was the president of the Performing Musicians Association of Nigeria. At that point, Nigerians hardly played Nigerian music. But, I kicked against it because talented artistes had begun to originate.
“I am so elated. it’s an honest thing for a 29-year-old Nigerian artiste to achieve this feat. to ascertain a young man doing great and getting global recognition is so exhilarating. Thankfully, it’s not just Burna Boy. Many artistes and other Nigerians in Diaspora also are breaking records altogether facets of life. What more could I invite, especially since we’ve been governed by scavengers of these years. we’ve also been living under unhealthy conditions.”
The singer-cum-activist also stated that his clamour for recognition for a far better welfare package for Nigerian musicians landed him in prison.
He added, “I was fighting for these artistes’ intellectual properties and their self-respect. it had been so bad that corporate bodies wont to pay heavily for international artistes to perform in Nigeri, to the detriment of our own artistes. As a matter of fact, the highest-earning artiste at that point was Daddy Showkey and he was paid N250, 000 for a show.
“I was so upset about this and directed that no a-list artiste should be paid a paltry sum of N250,000 henceforth. They were to be paid N1m or more. Those companies thought I used to be not in my right senses but I used to be determined. I also insisted that foreign artistes should pay a tax of N5m whenever they were billed to perform on Nigerian soil. My agitations landed me in prison but I used to be not bothered. I once spent Christmas in prison over those directives I gave as PMAN president.
“I fought numerous wars successfully for artists and today, I’m happy.”