Rema’s ‘Are You There?’ Demonstrates Growing Anger of Nigerian Youths

Image

By Adedapo Adesanya

There is a trope that isn’t true that many music listeners peddle: they say Nigerian new generation artists don’t make socially conscious music but the reality is that they don’t listen to these songs. New school leader, Rema, might change this narrative with his anger-laced street bop, Are You There? 

The track, which is one of the singles from his 2022 album, Raves and Roses, had Rema singing about youthful frustrations, inequality, hedonism, and corruption rife in the Nigerian state.

People dey talk say na only woman I sabi talk about so leave me make I talk about am,” he starts the three minutes 13 seconds long song drawing a parallel with how Nigeria’s youths are finding solace in hedonistic appeals to subsidise the frustrations of living in a place known for its multidimensional poverty, police brutality, and worrying developmental and social problems.

What compliments a song like this better than a video that breathes life into these messages. A masterclass from arguably Nigeria’s hottest video director, TG Omori; Rema represents a light hidden under a broken bushel.

The video opens with a baby crying in a cot with a motion toy dangling above — a clear answer to the country’s epileptic power supply which has been frustrating most Nigerians alive since their birth. Rema, we see is making himself the voice of change in a shanty town, a Rooster’s Coop that a considerable number of Nigerians are trapped in.

Are you there? Are you there there there? Are you there? Are you there there there? he quips in a frustrating manner into the void with a megaphone.

Rema makes it clear that Nigerian youths are industrious and reminiscent of the courageous protest that they carried out in October 2020, tired Nigerians are seen carrying placards with messages that read every single thing that Nigerians as early as the 1960s generations have clamoured for.

Orchestrating a demonstration, Rema infiltrates a gathering of political elites. We see him stand up to authorities who have made the nation’s wealth their own. He idolizes the passionate revolutionary that we are too cowardly to be. He is also not afraid to stand up to the resulting consequences of his actions.

What does one expect of a politician who turns off the news displaying another bomb blast in a moment of joy? What sympathy do we extend to such a person who gleefully celebrates while the nation is plunged into chaos? One must reflect on this because this is what many Nigerian youths feel if anybody cares to listen.

Wake up, wake up, are you there? are you there? he sings as a politician caught in the melee screaming for his life amid the ruckus. With that action, he emerges as a justified icon and this is how the state keeps creating dubious heroes due to their ineptitude.

There is no telling who the song might have inspired but that is soon quelled as the police — the fixer arm of the Nigerian government — is seen bulldozing the shanty town where our hero emerged from. In the process, innocent people have to bear the brunt but staying true to his beliefs, Rema stays and confronts these men in black but when a police officer promises to bring down his wrath, he flees the scene and probably the country. A story we’ve seen too many times.

Share
Related Stories
Image
02-March-2024

MTF Class of 2023 to Premiere Her Dark Past, Grown

By Modupe Gbadeyanka Two feature films will be premiered this weekend exclusively on the Africa Magic Showcase channel 151 and Africa Magic Urban channel 153 by the students of the MultiChoice Talent Factory (MTF). The two pieces of art titled Grown and Her Dark Past are the final projects of the MTF Class of 2023 students, a statement from the organisation said. The MTF is a leading film school in West Africa for young, talented and passionate filmmakers. It was established by the media platform to grow the region’s creative industry. Grown premieres on Africa Magic Showcase at 8.30 pm

Image
12-February-2024

Hotel Labamba to Premiere on Prime Video February 15

By Modupe Gbadeyanka Lovers of movies will from Thursday, February 15, 2024, have the opportunity to watch a new captivating film, Hotel Labamba, on Prime Video. The flick, produced by Laide Daramola, and directed by Biodun Stephen, features several notable faces like Lateef Adedimeji, Bimbo Ademoye, Lilian Afegbai, Bolaji Ogunmola, Blessing Jessica Obasi, and Femi Adebayo, among others. Business Post reports that Hotel Labamba, released last year, follows the murder of a popular Instagram influencer, Sexy Ella, played by Lilian Afegbai, in a secretive hotel known only to a select few. With everyone a suspect, the pressure is on the

Image
26-February-2024

Universal Music Group Buys Majority Stake in Mavin Records

By Adedapo Adesanya Universal Music Group (UMG) has acquired a majority stake in top Nigerian record label, Mavin Records, founded by artist, producer, music executive and entrepreneur, Mr Michael Collins Ajereh, popularly known as Don Jazzy. The acquisition comes four months after a potential sale of the label founded in 2012 was first reported. The top label, which houses music stars like Rema, Johnny Drille, Ayra Starr, Crayon, and LadiPoe, among others, saw bids come from the Universal Music Group, HYBE as well as from music asset investors in the financial sector. UMG is buying into the record following sales

Image
23-February-2024

How MultiChoice Empowers Nigerian Youth Through Creative Investment

As global populations age, Africa remains a bastion of youthful promise, with around 70% of the continent’s population below the age of 30. This youthful demographic can be an asset – but only if it is developed, by empowering young people through training, and by giving them a stake in the growth of their countries’ economies. Helping to develop young people’s abilities and expanding the pool of skills is also in the interests of industry and big business. Over the years, the Federal government of Nigeria embarked on youth empowerment initiatives to harness the skills and energy of Nigerian youths

More Stories
Image
16-December-2021

Time to Invest in Mobile Game Developers?

Nigeria, like the rest of the world, is showing dramatic growth in smartphone gaming. Playing games on an Apple or Android device is becoming the preferred modern-day entertainment option for all ages. The music and on-demand movie/television streaming services are popular alternatives, but the number of Nigerians shifting to play an assemblage of smartphone gaming releases is increasing rapidly. The huge collection of games and game genres to choose from means there is a game for everyone. Titles such as Clash of Kings and Idle Heroes are popular in Nigeria and when compared to PC or console games, they are

Image
19-April-2023

NERC to Distribute Additional Four Million Prepaid Meters

By Adedapo Adesanya The Nigeria Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) has pledged to provide additional four million prepaid meters to electricity consumers in the country in the next phase of its metering programme. This was disclosed by Mrs Aisha Mahmud, NERC Commissioner in charge of Consumers Affairs, at the Customers’ Complaints Resolution Meeting in Jos, Plateau State. Mrs Mahmud, who described the shortage of meters in the country as one of the biggest problems currently facing the commission, hinted that the challenge would soon be a thing of the past. She said that modalities had been put in place to provide

Image
23-October-2023

FG to Commence Student Loan Implementation January 2024

By Bliss Okperan The federal government has announced January 2024 as the commencement date for the student loan initiative. Speaking at the 29th National Economic Summit on Monday, President Bola Tinubu said the loan programme “must commence” in January 2024. Recall that the Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Education, Mr Andrew Adejoh, had earlier said the implementation of the scheme would be in September 2023, but this date was missed by the government, which was yet to get all things in place. Business Post reports that President Tinubu signed the Student Loan Bill into law a few months ago.

Image
23-May-2017

BREAKING: CBN Keeps Interest Rate at 14% as Predicted

By Modupe Gbadeyanka The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has announced leaving its benchmark interest rate at 14 percent as predicted by analysts. This was revealed on Tuesday by the apex bank’s chief, Mr Godwin Emefiele, while briefing newsmen on outcome of the CBN’s Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) meeting held on Monday and Tuesday in Abuja. Before the commencement of the meeting, which holds every quarter, many analysts had said that the banking industry watchdog will not tamper with the Monetary Policy Rate (MPR) despite signs that the economy was on the path to recovery after being down for over

Image
05-September-2017

Nigeria’s Exit from Recession Sweetens Presidency

By Modupe Gbadeyanka The announcement today by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) that Nigeria has officially exited recession has gladdened the Presidency. A statement issued today by Mr Laolu Akande, spokesperson to Vice President, Mr Yemi Osinbajo, said the Buhari administration welcomes news with cautious optimism. Mr Akande promised that the present administration will continue to drive Nigeria’s economic growth by vigorously implementing the Economic Recovery & Growth Plan (ERGP) launched earlier this year by President Muhammadu Buhari. He further said the overall economic plan and direction of the administration has resulted, among others, in sustained restoration of oil

Image
18-May-2023

Public Affairs Experts Task Tinubu on Policy Directions to Lift Economy

By Modupe Gbadeyanka Barring any last-minute change, Mr Bola Tinubu will be inaugurated as the President of Nigeria on May 29, 2023, taking over from Mr Muhammadu Buhari, after he was declared winner of the February 25, 2023, presidential election conducted by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC). He will inherit a battered economy and would be expected to get the ground running to endear himself to some Nigerians, who are not happy with his emergence. As Mr Tinubu prepares for his next job, some public affairs experts and economists have warned him about policy loopholes that can derail the

Image
07-August-2023

Vwaere Diaso Should not Die In Vain

By Osita Chidoka In 2014, a few weeks after joining the Federal Executive Council, I asked a question in the course of a debate about some buildings for renovation. My question was, who is in charge of elevator regulation in Nigeria? Who ensures that the elevators imported meet specifications and that periodic maintenance is enforced? I sensed the irritation of most members at my ‘irrelevant’ question, and nobody provided an answer as we moved to other topics. A few days ago, Vwaere Diaso, a medical intern, tragically died in an elevator accident at the doctors’ residence of the General Hospital

Image
22-January-2020

Ogun State Woo Investors with Development Plans

By Adedapo Adesanya The Governor of Ogun State, Mr Dapo Abiodun, has said potential investors willing to put their money in the state will enjoy several developments that have put been put in place by his administration to create a haven for thriving businesses. The Governor expressed this at the Executive Council Strategic Retreat (ECSR) held at Ogere, in Ikenne Local Government Area of the State as part of efforts put in place to ease doing business in the state. He said measures have been put in place to ensure that land title deeds are gotten within a month of

Ad
Ad
Recent Stories
Image
02-March-2024

JUST IN: Nollywood Star Mr Ibu Dies

By Modupe Gbadeyanka Information just reaching Business Post indicates that popular Nigerian actor, Mr John Okafor, otherwise known as Mr Ibu, is dead. It was gathered that the Nollywood star breathed his last on Saturday in a hospital in Lagos. His demise comes a day after the Nigeria film industry lost an actor, Mr Tolani Quadri Oyebamiji, well-known as Sisi Quadri. Mr Ibu underwent a surgery, which led to the amputation of one of his legs. He was later discharged from the hospital, but was reportedly taken back. Until his death, he acted in several movies. He was well known

Image
02-March-2024

African Bishops Seek Overhaul of Financial System as Debt Burden Worsens

African Catholic Bishops called for an overhaul of the financial system to address health, climate, food and other challenges the region faces. Ahead of a gathering of African Finance Ministers in Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe, the Justice, Peace and Development Commission of the Catholic Symposium of Episcopal Conferences of Africa and Madagascar (SECAM) outlined reforms for debt relief, development resources and governance. “In Sub-Saharan Africa the number of people facing food insecurity stress or crisis has more than doubled since 2019, reaching 420 million people last year,” noted the bishops in a statement. A delegation representing the African Bishops and religious

Image
02-March-2024

MTF Class of 2023 to Premiere Her Dark Past, Grown

By Modupe Gbadeyanka Two feature films will be premiered this weekend exclusively on the Africa Magic Showcase channel 151 and Africa Magic Urban channel 153 by the students of the MultiChoice Talent Factory (MTF). The two pieces of art titled Grown and Her Dark Past are the final projects of the MTF Class of 2023 students, a statement from the organisation said. The MTF is a leading film school in West Africa for young, talented and passionate filmmakers. It was established by the media platform to grow the region’s creative industry. Grown premieres on Africa Magic Showcase at 8.30 pm

Image
02-March-2024

Mandela’s Heirs Lose Power in South Africa

By Alexander Braterskiy South African authorities warn that if the opposition wins the parliamentary elections, the country may change course and leave the informal BRICS economic bloc, which includes Russia. The position of the African National Congress party, which has been in power since the collapse of apartheid, is indeed not the best, as shown by the municipal elections held earlier in the country. The opposition accuses the president of corruption and abuse of power, as well as an inability to cope with the country’s energy crisis. The ANC crisis occurred on the 30th anniversary of the first free elections

Image
02-March-2024

CAA Reaffirms Commitment to Climate Innovation for Sustainable Future

By Modupe Gbadeyanka A leading social enterprise focused on environmental sustainability, Climate Action Africa (CAA), has reaffirmed its commitment to being at the forefront of driving climate innovation for a sustainable future. The organization, which is a key participant at the four-day Omniverse Summit 2024 in Lagos, emphasised the need to integrate environmental sustainability models, technology, and community-driven innovation to address climate change challenges. It promised to foster an inclusive climate action ecosystem through innovation, which it said can be used to identify and scale solutions to address the imminent climate crisis in Nigeria and Africa as a whole, The

Image
02-March-2024

Endosurvivors Foundation Set For Another Endometriosis Awareness

By Adedapo Adesanya EndoSurvivors International Foundation (ESIF), an NGO championing endometriosis awareness in Nigeria, has announced its upcoming events in commemoration of the Global Endometriosis Advocacy Month in March, fondly tagged March4Endo by advocates all over the world.  Endometriosis is a chronic and inflammatory condition that affects approximately 1 in 10 girls and women in Nigeria and on a global scale. This sums up to about 190 million affected girls/women around the world, about the population of Nigeria in 2018.  The World Health Organisation (WHO) recognizes that endometriosis has significant social, public health, and economic implications leading to a decrease

Image
02-March-2024

CSCS, FrieslandCampina Lift NASD OTC Bourse by 0.31%

By Adedapo Adesanya The NASD Over-the-Counter (OTC) Securities Exchange returned to the positive territory after it gained 0.31 per cent on Friday, March 1, thanks to the duo of Central Securities Clearing System (CSCS) Plc and FrieslandCampina Wamco Nigeria Plc. CSCS Plc added 81 Kobo to its value to sell for N19.46 per unit compared with the preceding day’s N18.65 per unit, and FrieslandCampina improved by N1.15 to settle at N71.4o per share, in contrast to Thursday’s closing price of N70.25 per share. However, Aradel Holdings Plc continued its price depreciation yesterday as it shed N6.75 to sell at N2,395.00

Image
02-March-2024

Naira Now N1,548.25 at Official Market, N1,560/$1 at Black Market

By Adedapo Adesanya The Naira sustained its gradual recovery against the US Dollar in the Nigerian Autonomous Foreign Exchange Market (NAFEM) on Friday, March 1, appreciating by 2.94 per cent or N46.86 to sell at N1,548.25/$1, in contrast to the N1,595.11/$1 it was traded on Thursday. Also, in the spot market, the Nigerian currency improved its value against the Pound Sterling during the trading day by N90.13 to close at N1,956.06/£1 versus the previous day’s N2,046.19/£1 and against the Euro, it gained N76.39 to trade at N1,675.25/€1, in contrast to the N1,751.64/€1 it closed a day earlier. The supply of

Image
02-March-2024

Crude Oil Jumps 2% as Traders Sight Possible OPEC+ Cuts

By Adedapo Adesanya Crude oil appreciated by about 2 per cent on Friday as traders awaited a decision from the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and allies (OPEC+) on supply agreements for the second quarter. Yesterday, the price of Brent futures went up by $1.64 or 2 per cent to $83.55 per barrel and the US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) futures rose by $1.71 or 2.19 per cent to $79.97 a barrel. For the week, Brent added around 2.4 per cent while WTI gained more than 4.5 per cent. Analysts noted that the expectation that OPEC+ is going to

Image
02-March-2024

NGX Indices Nosedive by 1.23% as Traders Resume Profit-Taking

By Dipo Olowookere The bears made a quick return to the Nigerian Exchange (NGX) Limited after leaving the stage for the bulls for a day as investors reassessed the impact of the hike in the benchmark interest rate by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) on Tuesday on their investments. On Friday, the key performance indicators of the bourse closed lower by 1.23 per cent as a result of renewed selling pressure, especially in the energy and industrial goods sectors. Business Post reports that at the close of transactions on the first trading session of March 2024, the industrial goods