Timaya‘s video slamming Eedris Abdulkareem went viral. And why most supported the Dem Mama Soldiers frontman, few weren’t cool with it; like singer and show promoter Rafioso.
It all triggered when Eedris Abdulkareem had called Timaya an “ingrate,” saying that he helped Timaya become who he is today and he has refused to help other artists. Timaya, in his response, took to his Instagram and asked, “I was your backup artiste and you were not even appreciative. How many people have you helped? Where is them Rafioso, all those people wey dey with you?” He went as far as calling Eedris a “dirty igbo [marijuana] smoker.”
Rafioso, speaking to PUNCH, said Timaya is not telling the truth, as, according to him, Eedris Abdulkareem treated everyone under him with respect, recalling an incident where he (Eedris) saved Timaya’s life in Ogun state.
“There was a time we went for a show at Ogun State University. I was already asleep in my room during the show but I learnt that Timaya insisted that he wanted to perform last after Eedris was done with his performance. The show promoters were not comfortable with the arrangement because Eedris was his boss. Eedris agreed and when he went on stage, the tempo was very high but when it was Timaya’s turn to perform, they were not feeling him anymore. The people began to insult him and Timaya insulted them back. When he came down from the stage, the cult boys in the school followed him because they wanted to beat him up. The next thing I heard on my door was a loud bang, it was Eedris at my door shouting that I should wake up because the boys wanted to kill Timaya,” he recalled.
“We went to where Timaya was and brought him to my room where he slept that night. You can ask Timaya or the show promoter, Offshore, he would tell you the truth. Spydaman was at the show among other artistes. The cult boys began to look for Timaya for insulting them but we hid him in our room. Early in the morning, we had to move out,” Rafioso revealed. “So when I saw what Timaya posted about Eedris, I felt it was like an insult. I don’t know why he called my name and said that I am nowhere to be found. You don’t say that. He should speak for himself and not for me. I am doing very well. I am an artiste and a show promoter; I also have other businesses I am into. I have houses and tenants. I don’t understand why Timaya mentioned my name. I was with Eedris for more than 16 years and he helped me. He showed me love just like he did to everybody.”
He added that he was Eedris Abdulkareem’s backup singer before becoming his manager, adding that “Eedris can cut his arm and leg just to help someone.”
“Whenever they gave him money, there was a boutique where he normally bought clothes; he would call the owner of the shop to bring costumes. We would all pick costumes and Eedris would be the one to pay for them. After everything, he would still give us money,” Rafioso recalled, adding, “Timaya was not based in Lagos at the time, he was in Port Harcourt and he only came down to Lagos anytime he heard we had a show. Whenever we had a show, we had a stand-by bus that conveyed us to the venue and back home but since Timaya was coming from Port-Harcourt, we could not wait for him so he had to come and meet us at the venue of the event. Eedris treated all of us fine. The problem is that when Timaya came, he did not come to Eedris as a singer but as a dancer. He is a very good dancer. Eedris could be harsh when he wants to advise you so he advised us on how to explore our different talents. As for me, I was into acting before I got in contact with Eedris. I was in “Kiddies Vision 101” with Denrele [Edun]. When I met Eedris, he advised me that I could sing because I have a good voice. He put me through and he encouraged me.”
Timaya had said in his video that he was paying his own transport fare to attend Eedris Abdulkareem’s shows, adding that the singer did not even know his name at the time.
Continuing, Rafioso said, “When I watched Timaya’s video and saw that he said Eedris did not treat him right, I did not understand what he meant. When I first joined the crew, I did not get to see Eedris all the time. He was always inside so we had to relate with his manager. He was not someone you could walk up to like that because there was protocol. The compound was very big so whenever we got to his place, we would sit under a tree and we ate whatever we wanted to eat because they would bring food for us. Timaya was not the only one with Eedris, there were so many people with him. I remember Eedris told Timaya then that he should stop singing and try to sing a song about his dialect or where he is from. I sincerely apologise on behalf of Eedris to the likes of 2face Idibia, D’banj, Davido, Mr Eazi and every other person he insulted except Timaya.”
Reacting to Timaya’s statement calling Eedris Abdulkareem a “dirty-looking igbo (marijuana) smoker,” Rafioso said, “Ask Timaya if he smokes Indian hemp as well. That should answer your question.”