Ilerioluwa Oladimeji Aloba, known by his stage name MohBad, was a Nigerian rapper, singer, and songwriter whose career was marked by both remarkable achievements and challenging controversies. Born on June 8, 1996, in Lagos, Nigeria, MohBad’s journey in the music industry was characterized by talent, collaboration, and a determination to rise to stardom. His departure from Naira Marley’s Marlian Records in 2022, along with his allegations of blacklisting and abuse, shed light on the complexities and challenges faced by artists in the Nigerian music scene.
While details about MohBad’s early life are limited, it is known that he was born in Lagos, Nigeria. His humble beginnings in the city provided him with a backdrop against which he would later craft his music, reflecting the realities of life in Lagos.
MohBad’s music career took off after he signed with Marlian Records World in 2019, a record label headed by the controversial artist Naira Marley. He gained widespread recognition with his viral hit song “Ponmo,” featuring Naira Marley and Lil Kesh. This collaboration catapulted him into the mainstream music scene, and he quickly garnered a substantial following.
In 2020, MohBad released his debut EP titled “Light.” This eight-track project featured notable artists like Davido, Naira Marley, and Lil Kesh. The EP showcased MohBad’s versatility and ability to collaborate with established names in the industry. Naira Marley served as the executive producer for the EP, which was produced by a lineup of talented producers.
MohBad’s contributions to the music industry did not go unnoticed. He received multiple nominations, including five nominations at The Beatz Awards in 2021. Additionally, his presence was acknowledged by Audiomack, where he was listed among the top 21 Afrobeat artists of 2021.
MohBad’s journey in the music industry was not without its fair share of controversies, two of which garnered significant attention:
1. NDLEA Arrest
In February 2022, MohBad, along with fellow musician Zinoleesky and four others, made headlines when they were arrested by the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA). The arrests followed the discovery of illegal substances, including MDMA and cannabis, at their residence in Lekki, Lagos. The incident involved a dramatic raid by NDLEA operatives and allegations of mistreatment during the arrest. MohBad and the others were later released, but the incident brought the spotlight onto the complexities of fame and the challenges artists can face.
2. Domestic Violence Allegation
In October 2022, MohBad announced his departure from Marlian Records and made a shocking allegation against his former boss, Naira Marley. He accused Naira Marley of domestic violence and claimed that he had been assaulted on Marley’s orders after deciding to employ a different manager to handle his music and business affairs. This revelation shed light on the darker side of the music industry and highlighted the importance of addressing allegations of abuse and mistreatment within the industry.
MohBad’s complaints about being blacklisted after leaving a record label and his allegations of domestic violence within the industry should not be ignored by Nollywood industry giants and the entertainment community at large. Here’s why:
1. Awareness of Artist Rights: MohBad’s claims draw attention to the need for better protection of artists’ rights and well-being. His allegations of mistreatment and blacklisting serve as a reminder that artists should have the freedom to make career decisions without fear of repercussions.
2. Industry Accountability: Addressing allegations of abuse and unfair practices is essential for maintaining the integrity of the entertainment industry. Industry leaders, including Nollywood giants, should take a stand against such behaviors and work to create a safer and more supportive environment for artists.
3. Empowering the Next Generation: By addressing the issues raised by MohBad, the industry can send a message to aspiring artists that they can pursue their dreams without compromising their dignity or well-being. It sets a precedent for accountability and fairness.
MohBad’s life and career were marked by talent, collaboration, and a determination to succeed in the Nigerian music industry. His journey, including his departure from Marlian Records and allegations of abuse, shed light on the challenges faced by artists striving for success. Nollywood industry giants should take note of these issues and work towards creating a more equitable and supportive environment for artists, ensuring that their rights and well-being are protected as they pursue their creative endeavors. MohBad’s experiences serve as a reminder that the industry’s growth and success should not come at the expense of its artists’ dignity and welfare.