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For 12 hours, Ondo stood still for Sunny Ade

It was King Sunny Ade’s 70th birthday. The venue was the Civic Centre in Ondo State and the dignitaries who thronged the venue to celebrate with the man many people refer to as King of juju music would not forget in a hurry the dance steps, music and excitement that the event represented.

The event had dominated public discourse for months and when the drums were finally rolled out in honour of KSA, the excitement that rent the air once again illustrated what makes KSA the man after the hearts of many people.

Just like the Oleku Concert which rocked the entertainment firmament four years ago when KSA and Evangelist Ebenezer Obey-Fabiyi performed together on stage for the first time, KSA’s 70th birthday brought back same memories but this time it was Obey who was singing while KSA joined with dancing steps that left dignitaries in awe.

Obey, who was the last artiste to perform at the event, stirred the joy of the celebrant who could not resist the vibes, lyrics and melodies of Obey’s music. It was only a matter time before KSA was joined on stage by dignitaries who danced with the celebrant.

The event, which was organised by the gospel music industry, witnessed a large turnout of music lovers, most of whom were youths, who chorused the songs with Obey as he dished them out.

Representative of the Ondo State governor, Dr Kola Ademujimi, led other top government functionaries to the event. Assistant General Overseer of the Redeemed Christian Church of God, Pastor Johnson Odesola,  represented the General Overseer, Pastor Enoch Adeboye; Obas and clerics were also in attendance.

The event was anchored by ace broadcaster, Ambrose Somide and Taiwo Akinsola and it featured performances  of legends and current artistes.

Pastor Joseph Adelakun, popularly known as Ayewa, Ojo Ade, Akin Adebayo, otherwise known as Imole Ayo; GOMAN president, Funmi Aragbaye, Yinka Ayefele, Dunni Olarewaju, popularly known as Opeleope Anointing, Tope Alabi, Esther Igbekele, Bukola Akinade, Bisi Alawiye-Aluko, Kehinde Ologoara and delegates of Ondo State Gospel Musician Association of Nigeria (GOMAN) led by the its governor, Reverend David Akinadewo, among others, also thrilled fans.

The RCCG mass choir ushered the celebrant into the presence of God with the popular Hallelujah Chorus, just as KSA knelt down thanking God after eating from his birthday cake. He would later receive an award of excellence from the executives of the Nigerian Society of Physiotherapy.

The side attraction

Another snippet at the event was the discovery of one of the children of KSA, Solomon Adegeye, who seems to be following in his father’s steps through the gift of dance. Young Solomon,  who also keeps same hair cut like that of his father, was cynosure of all eyes at the event.

The event attracted ‘area boys’ and local drummers who attempted to force their way into the venue but were resisted by the security agencies. Some of them managed to get to the VIP section where dignitaries and music stars were seated.

In his remarks, KSA thanked everyone, saying, “I am delighted and grateful for this honour. I thank everyone that celebrated me. On behalf of my family, band and fans worldwide, I say thank you all especially to my fathers and mothers in the Lord. This is an event that makes a great difference in the history of my life.”