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Between Fashola Babatunde and Babatunde Fashola

When is Fashola Babatunde absolutely not Babatunde Fashola?  When, Hardball guesses, commerce goes awry!

That is the drama of the absurd oozing from the latest COVID-19 season howler, involving controversial musician and unfazed bohemian, Azeez Fashola aka Naira Marley.

The first trouble was the Funke Akindele early COVID-19 lockdown excitement, that fetched the beloved “Jennifer” of the comedy screens a court conviction.

Funke had decided to treat her beloved hubby to a birthday bash.  It was a lovey-dovey domestic stuff of enduring matrimonial tryst, at their highbrow Amen Estate, Ibeju Lekki, Lagos home.

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Well, things got frightfully awry when Naira Marley and “ECOMOG” reportedly stormed the party; and someone somewhere was reckless enough to upload the fun-making band — social distancing be damned! — on cyberspace, to the ire of cyber-denizens.

Funke and hubby got convicted.  So too was Naira Marley had a negotiated settlement.

Some three months later comes the next howler, but now in Abuja, not Lagos.  A private executive flight had booked one “Fashola Babatunde”, which the embattled airline claimed it thought was “the” Babatunde Fashola, former governor of Lagos and sitting Works and Housing minister.

Well, it turned out “Fashola Babatunde” was no more than the travel name for Naira Marley, whose surname is Fashola, but his first name is Azeez.

There are claims that the “Fashola Babatunde” was actually a Naira Marley sibling.  Now, why was that name used?  Was it to game the airl ine, to mistake the person for the minister, and therefore facilitate approval, since normal shuttle flights are suspended?

That’s what the airline claims.  But “the” Babatunde Fashola would have none of that crap — mixing up his name in such seedy deeds.

A release from his office has told everyone he had never stepped out of Abuja since March 22, when he returned there from official functions to inspect construction work on the Enugu-Port Harcourt expressway.

Of course, there was no doubt!  And the whole thing wouldn’t have been an issue had Naira Marley not danced himself into trouble, reportedly playing at a concert at the Jabi Lake Mall in Abuja, despite the COVID-19 social distancing protocols, to shield people from the spread of the virus.  Marley played at that concert, thus earning a threat of a second prosecution, foe breaching COVID-19 safety protocols.

The conduct of Marley, and every person at that concert is careless, reckless and utterly reprehensible.

It is scandalous that as the governments, federal and state, stretch themselves thin to contain COVID-19 and save lives, some citizens are not taking personal responsibility.  This is despite the ballooning number of cases and increasing deaths.

That is why the law must take its course on as many of that reckless band as the law can trace.  Those who put otrs’ lives at risk must taste the severe end of the law.

That is why the FCT authorities must make haste to prosecute and punish those involved.

Even at that, Naira Marley must earn especially severe censure.  To go perform at a concert at the height of COVID-19 storm is the height of irresponsibility.

To be caught twice, with such infringement, is very unfortunate indeed.  Even artistic licence is no free licence to absolute lack of common sense.

Source; The Nation NG


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