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Legendary Highlife Musician Uwaifo Laid To Rest

THE legendary highlife musician, Prof. Victor Uwaifo, fondly referred to as the Guitar Boy, was on Friday evening interred in his palatial residence at Victor Uwaifo Avenue off College/Ekenwan Road in Benin.

The interment took place after a funeral mass at Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium in the Edo State capital.

Edo Governor Godwin Obaseki said the newly-constructed Edo Creative Hub would be renamed after the iconic musician.

Obaseki said: “As a mark of honour to this legend (Uwaifo), the government of Edo State has decided that our newly-constructed Edo State Creative Hub will be named after him.

“The Creative Hub, which is going to be inaugurated during the second week of November this year, has a multi-million dollar sound stage for production for artistes. It will promote creative arts in Edo State. It has an editing suite to filter contents, including animation. It will incubate state-based groups and artistes.

“It will be used for live shows and stage plays. It has studio spaces for artistes from Nollywood to come and rent spaces for their productions and there will be space for developing skills in the creative arts.

“That is the least we can do for a man who changed the face of music in Nigeria, for a man who composed the song, Joromi, that was the first song from Nigeria and Africa to win a golden label at the time it did.

“We will always remember Sir Uwaifo for what he meant to us and what he represented. He represented the finest of Edo values, which include hard work, creativity, innovation and it is going to be very difficult for us to imagine our entertainment space, to imagine our music space in Edo State without Sir Uwaifo. May his soul rest in peace.”

The Catholic Archbishop of Benin Metropolitan See, Most Rev. Augustine Obiora Akubeze, in his homily, urged Nigerians to love their country and its progress.

The cleric said: “If we do the right things, Nigeria will survive. As individuals, we can change the image of Nigeria. Let us do good always and steer clear of sin, for Nigeria to witness the change we desire. Let us dream of Nigeria, where the green passport is not discriminated against.

“Let us work for Nigeria, where strike is not the only way to get attention of the government in power. Let us dream of Nigeria where the children of the rich and the poor can happily live together. Let us work for Nigeria where potentialities are converted to actualities. Every day of our lives is an opportunity to return to God with members of our families.”

The deceased, a First-Class graduate of Visual Arts at UNIBEN, was a Commissioner for Arts and Culture in the administration of Chief Lucky Igbinedion, while his undergraduate project of a king on a horse was a signature arts poster at the Ekenwan Campus of the higher institution.

Uwaifo was a master in playing guitars and stood out as the producer of two-headed guitars with excellent dancing steps that stood him out while he had a gallery/arts and culture/music centre at his mansion.

He died at 80 on August 28 at the Edo government-owned Stella Obasanjo Specialist Hospital, Sapele Road, Benin

The Oba of Benin, Omo N’ Oba N’ Edo Uku Akpolokpolo, Oba Ewuare II, held the iconic musician in high esteem.

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