Posted by News Express | 13 June 2013 | 4,843 times
The Nigerian Government has been asked to rename the National Theatre in Lagos after highlife veteran Fatai Rolling Dollar (real name Fatai Olayiwola Olagunju) who died yesterday in Lagos, aged 85.
The call was made by a development focused Non-Governmental Organisation, Human Rights Writers’ Association of Nigeria (HURIWA). The rights group said “the late music legend brought tremendous global honor to Nigeria and remained one of the best known ambassadors of the indigenous Nigerian music up until he breathed his last and therefore must be given the best national recognition by the Government of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.” The group said it believes that “President Goodluck Jonathan as a well known lover of African indigenous creative arts and music will not hesitate to take urgent measures to immortalise this great man of music.”
HURIWA in a statement released in Abuja and endorsed jointly by the National Coordinator, Comrade Emmanuel Onwubiko, and the National Media Affairs Director, Miss Zainab Yusuf, also called on the Nigerian Government “to bestow a posthumous national award on Fatai Rolling Dollar because of the good image the late musical icon brought to Nigeria and Africa and because his contributions significantly advance the promotion and protection of Nigeria’s indigenous music.”
It noted that the late music star’s Won Kere Si Number Wa has become a global hit in most social events attended by black people and even some Caucasians.
HURIWA averred thus: “As a human rights group with strong bias for the promotion and protection of our revered African tradition and culture, we agree with the considered assessment of most music critics around the world that the late music legend, Mr. Fatai The Rolling Dollar, had paid his dues since he began his illustrious music career in the 1950’s with Queen Mary Orchestra.”
HURIWA further described the late guitarist, co poser and singer as “a good national model of hard work, resilience and dedication to duty which are some of the rich virtues he displayed generously going by the universal fact that he worked actively as a performer up to his very old age without retiring like most people in his age would have easily done but he continued to remain productive and creative and to deliver entertainment and rich cultural songs to millions of admirers around the world.”
“Fatai The Rolling Dollar defied conventional science and logic of old age as he remained one of the most sought after dance hall performers and Musicians in Nigeria and across the world even in his very old age,” HURIWA asserted.
•Photos shows the late Fatai Rolling Dollar.
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