‘We won’t allow them soil our reputation’
POPULAR Islamic singer and President of Islamic Musicians Association of Nigeria (ISMAN), Alhaji Wasiu Kayode Sodiq has lampooned his female colleagues over indecent dressing, promising to address the issues with stringent measures. He said this and much more when we cornered him at an event in Ikeja, Lagos on Tuesday, January 27, 2015.
As a leader of Islamic gospel singers in Nigeria, what’s your candid comment on the indecent dressing among female members, their kind of music and all that?
We’re working on that very seriously. In the beginning, my perception of the situation was that if I had to be hard on them, they would accuse me of hindering their progress. They would say I don’t want them to be stars. After all, people have known me, they have known Ayeloyun, Damilola Esin Ogbamilaye, Labaeka and others. So, I had to overlook certain things. But now, I am ready to battle them so that they won’t turn the genre to something else. I can reason with you. We need to let them realise that this is Islamic music, it’s not supposed to be done in a secular way. Even some Islamic scholars frown at all these female singers because their voice alone is a kind of nakedness, which is supposed to be for their husbands alone, not for public consumption. To be honest, we’re putting our little effort as leaders to address the issue but they are not ready to listen to us.
There was a time one man called from Ilorin, Kwara State, his name is Seriki Nyaki, complaining bitterly about the same thing you just said. A lot of others have also called me on the same issue, especially on the provocative dresses some of our ladies wear. The man commented badly about indecent dresses they parade. The man called Seriki Nyaki of Ilorin said there was a Nikkah he attended in Ilorin and he saw a lot of Islamic gospel singers there, and he was shocked because of what he witnessed at the event concerning the conduct of these female singers. He even intended taking a bold step against them but I persuaded him not to do so that I will take care of the situation. Although, I don’t know the kind of step he said he was going to take, he only said he would take a bold step. So, I believe we’re trying to curb indecency among the female singers and I believe very soon, our efforts will materialize.
Don’t you have rules and regulations guiding the association?
We have rules and regulations. We have constitution guiding our conduct. And that will be implemented to the letter very soon without minding whose ox is gored. We had a meeting with them in December 2014, and they also pledged their cooperation in ensuring perfect implementation of the association’s constitution in respect of anything indecent among them. They said they are ready to abide by the rules and regulations of ISMAN. To enable us carry out necessary measures on that, we have set up a body called Task Force and Disciplinary Committee, to be headed by our great fathr, Alhaji Abdulwahab Falowo. The committee is going to work, in conjunction with our lawyer. I don’t want to let the cat out of the bag, but I assure you, all the ills will be corrected. And very soon, you also will see change. We can’t continue to tolerate anything capable of putting our association and Islam into disrepute. It’s either you comply or leave ISMAN. We will even invite you press men soon and make our stance public. We will definitely take the bull by the horn and we will wash the association clean of all the mess. But it’s going to be one step after the other.
What’s really happening from your end, career wise?
Everything is alright. I am okay, my career is booming. The only thing is that I travelled in 2012 to the United States of America where I spent about six months but before I came back, I personally can feel that my fans had missed me a lot. A s you’re also aware of the fact that it’s when people see you that they invite you to their occasions to perform. If you’re not available, they will definitely call others. And we have a lot of other Islamic musicians around now, doing well. But in all, when I came back, the game changed again.
That means you still remain your usual Baba n’ waka as you’re famously addressed?
Yes, Alhamdullilahi for that. I still remain my usual Kayode Al-Sideeq, Baba n waka. My fan base keeps expanding. Even very soon, my new album will be completed. It’s going to be a bang. I am in the studio right now working on it and a duet. My fans should be expecting something special from me this year.
Late Abdulwaheed Ariyo was the immediate past president of ISMAN, what are you doing to immortalize him?
Presently, there is nothing on ground concerning that. But maybe before the end of my tenure, something may be done.
– TADE ASIFAT