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Story & photos by Niyi Tabiti
Chief Reporter
American born popular soul singer, Anita Baker disappointed scores of Nigerian high profile personalities and members of the international community,who converged in Lagos on Saturday 30 August 2008 to watch her live performance. watched most of the guests lamenting about the show of shame and excuses put up by the American singer.She made good her threat not to perform that night after telling the organisers point blank that she only performs for theatre setting as against the banquet arrangement at the Expo Centre of Oceanview Restaurant, Victoria Island, Lagos. Efforts to get the 50 year old singer to change her mind were futile.
High society personalities who witnessed the disappointment at Oceanview on Saturday included Tunde Okoya, Lanre Nzeribe, Stella Okoli of Emzor Phamaceuticals,DejareAdegbenro and wife, Jumoke (nee TOS Benson), Ruth Osime, the editor of This day Style, Mina Okoloko. Others included wife of multimillionaire pool merchant, Rosemary Kessington Adebutu and daughter, Tope,Toyin Subair of HITV, Mrs. Nike Ogunlesi and several others.
We gathered that the guests between N50, 000 and N100, 000 for the show. A table comprising ten people in the hall cost as much as N500, 000 to occupy. Though the hall was not filled, it contains movers and shakers who wanted to have a feel of what the grammy and multi-plantinum award winning 'mummy Baker' still has to offer.
Popularly comedian known as Bright Ikpocha, as usual, was on hand to make the event lively with her rib cracking jokes. In the element of a comedian drunk with ‘serious’ humour, Basket mouth took a swipe at Anita Baker for not coming that night. “You wey your career don finish, we just say make we help you and you still dey do shakara.God punish you!” He said. Nigerian born up and coming singer known as Nikki performed to the delight of the well seated audience.
That all was not well with the Anita show became obvious on Thursday afternoon when the soul diva shunned the press conference that was organized in her honour.The media parley was part of effort to leverage the show and an opportunity to chat with the press. Obviously thinking of the unpalatable action of the artiste and the dire consequence on future events, the organisers offered an excuse that Anita was actually traveled long distance and need sometime to rest. Inside sources, however, told that the woman had been acting funny since she stepped into the country. “She was given the best form of hospitality that befits her status. Her bill was also settled before she came into the country. That she refuses to attend the press briefing on the excuse that she was tired was a frivolous excuse.Afterall, she arrived the country on Wednesday night, while the briefing was the following day in the afternoon”
Information available to us show that the event was put together by Chapelhill Denham and Kilimanjaro, a company led by Lagos businessman and socialite, Femi Akande.We further gathered was packaged to coincide with the 40th birthday of Kemi Bolaji Balogun, the Managing Director of Chapelhill Denham in Nigeria.
Efforts to get official reaction from the organisers met with a brickwall.However, an insider who does not his name mentioned disclosed that most guests did not complain because of the track record of the company in past events. “
"Kilimanjaro has brought international artistes such as Kanye West and Jay-Z to Nigeria in the past and it didn’t encounter any unpalatable situation like this” the source defended.
Note: Anita Baker or Anita Baker, we have got lovely photos from the event for you, stay tunned.
Photo 1- Big boy, Dejare Adegbenro and wife, Jumoke Adegbenro (nee T.O.S Benson) stepping into the venue on Saturday night.
Photo 2-Stella Okoli, MD EMZOR phamaceuticals (on red) and friend.
Photo 3-The expo centre.
Photo 4- Tosyn Bucknor and siter, Mrs. Funke Bucknor-Obruthe.


  1. I laff!!!! They keey going abroad to bring in foreign acts now this one don show them banquet koo banquet nii. And to all those who go about spending money like there is no tomorrow . SERVES YOU RIGHT!!!All this notice me has to stop. Put your money to good use. (E.g look at the school walls and the state of the classrooms where Mutiu Leshi and friends sent Niyi to donate items). I believe she won't bat an eyelid to payback. It's now down to the organisers to refund people's money.

  2. The very truth is that she thinks too much of herself.She should`ve known that the youths wouldn`t find her contemporery yet the banquet show is the best for her by this time.

    C`mon, Anita Baker.Life is worth more than pride and love is worth more than feelings.Atleast, you could have done it for the motherland.

    But,above all, I still love you.

  3. hello that is goood its better she left..she was not told the truth from the start..

    and from a 7 dollars a 500 manage....

  4. visit my for more .

  5. If she told them in advance that she does not perform at banquets, why should she be forced to sing at one? I think she did the best thing-Well done Anota. And for that comedian disrespecting the Queen of Soul he should shut his mouth because nobody knows him outside Nigeria-Anita is international.

  6. Anita Baker was the thing then..i suppose our effort to prove she"s still got it..has failed so i can now call her a turkey... a faded one at that!

  7. Anita is the best thing that has ever happen to music!!!!

    she is waaaaay to classy to perform at a school like function

  8. How can they expect a woman with such a huge international stature to perform to a small group of well known guests while eating their eba and drinking their large stout. Sorry but she don pass that stage long time. I would never have performed. If you've ever been to her concerts you would understand. She is not a kanye west or Jay-z. Please!

  9. well i believe that Anita is a respectable figure in the industry and she has proven her worth. She is well celebrated internationally so that should count alot. she must have good reasons for her actions. no so called commedian should openly disrespect others like that because you have not been able to build your career up to half her standard. so watch out.from Evelyn.


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