By BENJAMIN NJOKU
Returnee reggae legend and guitarist, Majek Fashek may have at the peak of his career been regarded as one of Nigerian music icons who would not only elicit a standing ovation anywhere, but also would be jostled by fans for his autograph.
But this was not the case on Easter Monday, when the Rain Maker was spotted along the highbrow Allen Avenue, Ikeja, Lagos. Looking shabby, frail and very unkempt, the passersby wondered out loudly whether this was the same Majek Fashek who waltzed his way into the hearts of music fans in the late 80s and early 90s, with his debut album “Prisoner of Conscience” containing the hit track ‘Send Down The Rain’ which he released in 1987.
While his disturbing outlook attracted pity from those of his fans that recognised him, very few onlookers who could not believe their eyes murmured as well as discussed in hush tones in respect of the failing state of health of one of Africa’s greatest reggae artistes.
Majek was more of a shadow of his old self as he walked down the street of Allen, accompanied by a guy suspected to be one of his managers.
With his unkempt dreadlocks and worn out boots, the once handsome and talented reggae icon was reduced to an object of mockery caused by his abuse of substance.
“I wouldn’t believe this is Majek Fashek, he’s looking sickly, shabby and unkempt.” muted one of the passersby. Another passersby added, “look at what he has done to himself, a great singer indeed.”
However, since his return from USA last year, the reggae artiste’s outlook presents a different picture of what his fans and lovers used to know of him.
Recently, it was rumoured that a group of fans were mobilizing to raise funds to facilitate the reggae artiste’s rehabilitation. Under the platform of Majek Fashek Help Drive, the group which is allegedly being coordinated by a staff of AIT wants to check the musician into a rehabilitation centre in the country all in the bid to set his career back on track.
The Rainmaker as he is fondly called has been a shadow of his old self after an alleged long battle with alcohol and drug addictions. Nigerians must not allow Majek Fashek to die.