Social activist and rapper, Ruggedman has disassociated himself from the arrest of upcoming hip hop artists, Afeez Fashola, more popularly known as Na
Social activist and rapper, Ruggedman has disassociated himself from the arrest of upcoming hip hop artists, Afeez Fashola, more popularly known as Naira Marley who is currently in the custody of the Economic Crimes and Financial Commission, EFCC, on advanced fee fraud and related charges, alongside his colleague, Omoniyi Temidayo Raphael, more popularly known as Zlatan Ibile.
Recall that on Friday, the duo of Naira Marley and Zlatan Ibile were arrested alongside three others; Tiamiu Abdulrahman Kayode, Adewunmi Adeyanju Moses and Abubakar Musa. Their arrest followed an early morning raid on Friday, May 10, 2019 at 9, Gbangbola Street, Ikate, Lekki, Lagos where a number of items, including laptops, were confiscated.
The EFCC Lagos Zonal office said the arrested individuals have volunteered what has been described as ‘useful information.’ about their involvement in the alleged criminal activities, even as investigations continue adding that they would eventually be charged to court.
Disassociating himself from their arrest, Ruggedman said, ‘I do not know Naira Marley personally, the same way I do not know the over 300 Nigerians I have gotten justice for against police brutality. I do it because it is who I am’.
In his post, he said, “My fellow Nigerians and the Distinguished members of the Press, I have read and heard all sorts of comments pertaining to the Naira Marley case and seen the misinformation making the rounds which is quite unfortunate to say the least. I do not know Naira Marley personally, the same way I do not know the over 300 Nigerians I have gotten justice for against police brutality. I do it because it is who I am.
“All I did was caution a young artist, who has influence, against making utterances about an issue that by global standard is considered a crime. I believe correcting this was the way to go as an elder, but got insulted for this even by those being misled. I never responded to Naira Marley’s invectives nor those of his fans, same way I have not responded to any of the negative comments from social media.
“I note that saying I was “happy in a way” about his arrest has evidently frayed some nerves and for that I apologise. It was in hope that it would serve as deterrent for persons who might consider the said ills or need to make a u-turn. It by no means was intended to wish for his downfall. It perhaps was not a good choice of word in hindsight. I do not look forward to anyone’s downfall but rather hope we all learn from the situation.
“I hereby state categorically that I had nothing to do with his arrest. We all must recall that he glorified fraud on a public platform where security agencies like the Police, NDLEA and EFCC are also on. I am sure they saw his posts and captions the same way we all did. I, however, was the one that cautioned him. I guess this was what led all the darts and arrows my way as a literal mortal retribution to my person.
“Despite the disrespect to my person, I got nothing against him and only longed for him to be discerning and utilise his position of influence appropriately. May God bless you all and yes that includes those wishing me evil and threatening me. Nothing will change who I am and I will keep you all in my prayers.
Just two days before his arrest, Naira Marley released a song titled ‘Am I a yahoo boy?’ and an accompanying video in which he featured Zlatan Ibile.