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EndSARS protesters occupy Lagos State House of Assembly, Alausa, Ikeja, Lagos, Nigeria on Friday, October 9, 2020. The protesters are calling for the scrapping of police unit, known as Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) over the squads incessant harassment and brutality of innocent Nigerians.

#EndSARS: Nigerian Protests Against Police Brutality Strengthen

Nigerians continue to call upon President Muhammadu Buhari to end the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) in another wave of peaceful protests which first began as early back as 2017.

Nigerians continue to call upon President Muhammadu Buhari to end police brutality through ongoing countrywide protests. According to Aljazeera, this follows news of a civilian who reportedly died at the hands of the federal security agency Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) which subsequently sparked the #EndSARS demonstrations this past week. This is yet another wave of protests since 2017 calling for the complete dissolution of SARS.


READ: Nigerians React to VP Osinbanjo's 'Overhaul' of SARS After Public Outcry of Rampant Abuse

After a weekend of protests, the Nigerian government has responded with conflicting statements with regards to the state of SARS. According to BBC News, President Buhari committed to dissolving the alleged rogue unit while the Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Adamu,released a public statement on Sunday confirming the disbandment of SARS. While some Nigerians welcomed the news, a similar commitment was made in 2018 but SARS remained active. This appears to be the case once again as one social media user pointed out.

Anecdotal stories of alleged battery, extortion, murder and kidnapping by SARS have caused #EndSARS to trend across Africa and other parts of the world.

SARS was established in 1992 by the Nigerian government in order to combat armed robbery with the "element of surprise" as quoted by the founder Simeon Danladi Midenda. The security agency has been under public scrutiny since 2017 and has been alleged to be a rogue unit that targets Nigerians who come across as rich or "flashy". According to the Washington Post, Nigerian filmmaker Dare Olaitan was pulled over while driving by SARS officials who accused him of speeding. When he requested proof of his alleged speeding, the police officers reportedly slapped him, grabbed his car keys and forced him to withdraw money from an ATM. Similar stories have been trending on Twitter with some more grievous than the last.

Famous Nigerian artists Burna Boy, Davido, Tiwa Savage, Don Jazzy, Fall, Runtown and Wizkid have also joined the protests from their various locations across the world. Davido joined the protests in Nigeria this past Sunday while Burna Boy took to Twitter to share his sentiments on a relief fund he recently set up and to which Sean "Diddy" Combs has reportedly donated. Burna Boy has also funded #EndSARS billboards which have been erected all over the country.

Protest have resumed this morning with demonstrators blocking Lekki toll gate which has led to a lockdown in Lagos.

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Rising Star Khaid Shares New Single ‘Jolie’

Nigerian music newcomer Khaid comes through with a new love song.


Khaidshares "Jolie," an Afro-infused love song that marks his first music release for the year. The record is a rhythmic and melodic offering that is complete with an infectious hook and Khaid's captivating vocals. In the song, Khaid describes his admiration for a girl that he is pursuing, but equally expresses the challenge that he is having getting her attention.

At the age of 12, Khaid, who was born and raised in Ojo in Lagos, Nigeria, began to freestyle and shoot videos in the streets of Ojo, which is where he was eventually discovered and signed by Sydney Walker, the owner of Neville Records, and a prominent Nigerian comedian.

At the beginning of 2022, Neville Records announced Khaid as a new signee, and since then, he has continued to make waves in the Nigerian music industry. His debut single "With You," was released only eight days after the announcement, and went on to become a commercial success. The song became one of the country's top hits, which now has over 3.7 million views on YouTube and 5 million Spotify streams.

Khaid went on to a release a 6-track album called Diversity and continues to push the envelope at only 17-years-old. The young talent has an EP on the way in the near future, and was recently featured on Okay Africa's 12 Nigerian Artists To Watch In 2023.

Listen to Khaid's "Jolie" below

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Image via Khaid/Listen Up.

12 Nigerian Artists to Watch in 2023

We highlight Nigeria’s best emerging talents set to make their mark this year.

Nigeria is in many ways at the forefront of the global African music movement. The country has given birth to Africa’s biggest stars, and continues to do so year on end. However, this isn’t limited to the globally-known, such as international artists like Burna Boy and Wizkid. Every big artist starts from somewhere, and every established act once had their breakout moment.

Every year Nigeria churns out a handful of potential stars in the early phases of their journey to stardom, who make their mark with singles and projects that establish them as talents to watch. From greenhorns making their official debuts to budding talents attempting to establish their first hit single runs, we’ve highlighted a number of emerging Nigerian acts with amazing potential that wield a solid chance of breaking out this year.

Check out our list of 12 Nigerian artists to watch in 2023 below.

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Listen to Burna Boy Feature On Popcaan's New Song 'Aboboyaa'


Renowned dancehall artist Popcaan has released his album Great Is He, via OVO Sound, and it features none other than Burna Boy.


Jamaica's Popcaanhas shared his anticipated album Great Is He, and the body of work features Nigerian superstar Burna Boy on the track "Aboboyaa."

The album showcases the Jamaican musical giant's signature dancehall sound, while also exploring the depth of genre's versatility. In addition to featuring Burna Boy, Great Is He includes features from OVO Sound's boss Drake, Jamaica's Chronic Law, and Toni-Ann Singh, among others.

On "Aboboyaa," the two musical powerhouses merge their signature rhythmic melodies and intonations in a way that is both compelling to listen to on the first listen, and in turn inspires a second and third listen.

Ever since he released his debut album in 2014, Popcaan has become an international dancehall sensation, and his repertoire includes a list of impressive features.

His album Forever, which was released in 2018, debuted at number two on Billboard’s Top Reggae Albums. Commercially, Popcaan has made a mark on the music scene too. His last project FIXTAPE — which included “Twist & Turn,” the mesmerizing dancehall hit featuring Drake and PARTYNEXTDOOR — has garnered over 191 million streams and continues to receive accolades from outlets like Pitchfork, who described the body of work as “a testament to his place at the forefront of the genre.”

"Aboboyaa" is not Popcaan's first international collaboration. In the past, the Jamaican icon has worked with several international music acts including Davido, Jamie xx, Young Thug, Gorillaz, Kano, Jorja Smith and a host of others. He also founded Jamaica’s annual Unruly Festwhich brings stars across the globe to experience Jamaican culture.

Listen to "Aboboyaa" featuring Burna Boy below.

Listen to Popcaan and Burna Boy's "Aboboyaa"

Music
Photo: Nabil Elderkin.

The Songs You Need to Hear This Week

Featuring Popcaan x Burna Boy, Bongeziwe Mabandla, Mr Eazi, Baaba Maal, Pheelz and more.

Every Friday, we highlight the top releases through our best music of the week column, Songs You Need to Hear. Here's our round-up of the best tracks and music videos that came across our desks.

If you like these music lists, you can also check out our Best Songs of the Month columns following Nigerian, Ghanaian, East African and South African music. If you missed them, check out our music lists for the Best of 2022 here.

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