The Unveiling of Eedris Abdulkareem Colloquium

Ladies and Gentlemen of the Press,

Thank you for honoring our invitation. On behalf of Unchained Vibes Africa (UVA) and our partners, I welcome you to this press conference.

We’re unveiling the plan to host a Colloquium in honour of Nigeria’s Hip-hop icon and Activist Eedris Abdulkareem.

UVA, in partnership with Lakreem Entertainment, uses this medium to invite the general public to the Eedris Abdulkareem Colloquium, a special edition of Freedom Vibes, the sixth in a series of events geared towards promoting artists’ freedom of expression, and the use of music and artistic expressions for civic engagements.

The objectives of the Colloquium are:

1. To reflect on the music of Nigeria’s hip hop veteran Eedris Abdulkareem and his contributions to nation building and

2. To sensitize the general public on the role of artists in a democracy and mobilize the artistic community to become more active in civic engagements.

The event will provide a platform to draw attention to Eedris’ selfless service to Nigeria through music and his current health challenge. The Colloquium will complement the efforts of various stakeholders in ramping up support for his recovery. As one of Nigeria’s most visible and consistent artists advocating for good governance through music, Eedris has worked with Unchained Vibes Africa and served as an Ambassador of Freedom Vibes since its official launch in October 2021.

Tagged Freedom Vibes 6.0 – Eedris Abdulkareem Colloquium, the event will sensitize the public on how music can effectively carry critical advocacy messages and raise awareness about social and political issues in a way that traditional advocacy cannot. Using an audiovisual presentation dissecting the music of Eedris Abdulkareem, the Colloquium will showcase the common presence of music in people’s lives and its power to condense feelings and ideas into small units of time which can easily be accessible to an average person. From health emergencies to insecurity, the Colloquium will reflect on the Eedris’ years of advocacy demanding respect for human life in Nigeria.

Over the years, his music has been a major influence on citizens’ yearnings for change and has triggered responses from authorities. Eedris never keeps quiet in the face of injustice or when the country is in disarray; he releases songs that speak truth to power.

Eedris was recently diagnosed of kidney failure which has slowed him down in his usual activism through his music. Today, in the face of unprecedented insecurity, health emergencies and multiple crises that have made life unbearable for ordinary citizens, the usual energies and vibes from the Hip-hop icon who has been the voice of the voiceless, are missing. This may appear like a trying period for the Hip-hop icon but in reality, it is a big trouble for the ordinary citizens and the poor masses whose voices are never heard. Eedris’ music represents these voices that have been silenced by poverty weaponized by bad governance and corruption.

The colloquium will be graced by music executives and industry key players, including Dr Kenny Ogunbe (Keke), the CEO of Kennis Music/Kennis 104.1 FM and Dede Mabiaku, Veteran Musician, Activist and protégé of Afrobeat legend Fela Anikulapo Kuti who are expected to reflect on Eedris Abdulkareem’s artistic journey and his activism respectively. Taking a critical look at the current dearth of fearless, patriotic and consistent conscious artists, what this portends for Nigeria’s future and the urgent need to safeguard that future, the Colloquium will provide a platform for ramping up support for Eedris Abdulkareem’s recovery from his current health emergency.

Goodwill messages are expected from colleagues, friends, associates and fans of Eedris in Nigeria and the diaspora. There will be a virtual live session with Eedris who has remained in high spirit despite the current health challenges.

The colloquium is scheduled for Saturday, 13th August 2022 at Freedom Park, Lagos Island from 11.30am to 4pm. The theme of the Colloquium is Towards 2023: The Role of Artists in Making Our Lives Matter. Participation is free and open to the general public through prior registration. It is a hybrid event which allows for a combination of in- person/physical attendance and virtual/online participation via Zoom webinar.

Signed
Ayodele Ganiu
Executive Producer

About the organization
Unchained Vibes Africa is a cultural organization and social enterprise committed to developing arts and culture projects geared towards social causes. Our mission is to leverage the power of the arts to promote civic education, human rights, cultural diversity and the spirit of solidarity in Africa.