The Nigerian afrobeat star has called on Beyoncé and other international brands to use their platforms to support the ongoing #EndSARS protest in Nigeria. In an emotional video shared by the multiple award-winning artist, Tiwa said the young Nigerians who contributed to the Lion King; The Gift are facing hard times in their country.
“I was involved in a project recently that I was so proud of, as an artist, I was proud to be called and to be amongst the few people that were involved in this project, it’s called ‘Black is King’, The gift album. So I’m going to say this, please don’t quote me out of context, I want to use my platform right now to call out Beyoncé and the whole team that reached out to a lot of Nigerians, Nigerian artists, Nigerian producers, Nigerian video directors, dancers, creatives. I’m calling on Beyoncé and her team, the same way they used their platform to elevate and to show the world that ‘Black Is King’, and how beautiful Afrobeat, Africa, and our culture is. I want them to please use their voice and their platform right now, because the same country that births the genre, is on fire right now. Where these creatives are from is on fire. So I’m calling on Beyoncé and her whole team, and I am telling you that you cannot ignore this, cannot keep quiet because we all celebrated the Black Is King. I personally was so proud of it but please you can not be quiet on this”.
After thanking brands like Amazon, Spotify, apple, SoundCloud amongst others, for supporting afrobeat music for years, Tiwa didn’t hesitate to ask for their support during these hard times. “I am saying please use your platform, use your voice because there might be someone out there who hasn’t heard of what’s going on in Nigeria, but they will through your platform. Please we need your help and support.”
The mother of one and afrobeat icon lamented on how Nigeria has been bad for the past years. Adding that “we are not on the streets protesting for light, water, health care, education, infrastructure because we are so used to not having that. Now, all we are asking for is to stay alive, and they still want to stop that”.
On October 3rd, 2020, a video went viral on social media showing a SARS police officer shot a Nigerian youth in Delta State, Nigeria. This led to the public outcry on social media especially on Twitter with the #ENDSARS hashtag. Weeks later, youths including actors, musicians, media personalities, filmmakers, actresses took the streets in Nigeria to protest against police brutality. It led to the immediate dissolve of SARS (Special Anti-Robbery squad). The protesters have five demands from the authorities.