….H ow long were you married to Kefee?
The marriage lasted for three years: from 2005 to 2008. I won?t count this year.
….How did you guys meet three years ago?
We didn’t meet three years ago; we met about 10 years ago. She was in the choir that I led in my father’s church in Sapele. I had this vision of a mobile choir, like that of Kirk Franklin. Kefee was a lead vocalist in my choir. My younger sister, Estee, was also a lead vocalist, and there were some other good singers. I raised a choir with this vision in mind. Then, I hadn?t even asked Kefee out. I just saw her as a chorister.
…..So, when did you ask her out?
Rumours were rife in church back then.
That was how it started. People started spreading rumours that I was sleeping with her.
How did the rumour come about? It actually started when they got to know that I wanted to travel abroad. One particular girl felt that our dream of going abroad to be like Kirk Frankiln was just going to fade like that. I didn’t tell anybody that I was travelling abroad, they heard from someone else.
As such, the girl threw the stone and the rumour started. It was a very serious issue. The church almost split, because some people felt it was not right to cover up for the pastor’s son. But thank God for the resident pastor then; he investigated the issue thoroughly and found that it was a mere rumour. The people that started the rumour were suspended from the church.
And then you decided to turn the rumour into reality…
Not really. It was after then that some other girls in the church started giving me ill report about Kefee. They told me she was circumcised because she was caught with some men. I felt all the things they were saying were too bad, because Kefee was very important to the choir. I had to get close to her to see the kind of person she was. I wasn?t going to let her go at all.
Was she as bad as people said?
No way! When I came close to her, I discovered that Kefee was a wonderful girl. She was very decent. She was from a responsible home and she was God fearing. I decided to get closer to her. If not for the rumour and all that, I don?’ think I would have got close to Kefee. I got closer to her and found out that she was the kind of girl any man would want for a wife.
….So you decided to marry her.
Oh yes. But she was scared. She wasn’t comfortable with the rumour. But I told the resident pastor my intention. And in fairness to the man, he warned me against the marriage. He told me that Kefee was not my wife. He advised me to move on with my life, travel abroad like I wanted to do, and get another girl to marry. He told me that my father would never agree to the marriage.
He even ended up telling me some sensitive things. He knew the family very well, because Kefee?s dad was his friend. But I insisted on marrying her. My mind was already made up to marry Kefee. I didn’t want to listen to the man because he broke away from my dad’s church. I felt that was the reason he didn’t want me to marry Kefee.
…But were both parents in support of the relationship?
Her dad had left my dad’s church and I told her that it was going to be difficult since I would need my dad’s blessing. I suggested we call it quits but she wouldn’t agree. She cried and cried. She threatened to kill herself and all that. Then my father told her that if her parents would not embarrass us if we asked for her hand in marriage, we would go. She went back to her father, who said he wasn’t going to embarrass anybody. He said if the reverend could stoop to come to his house and ask for his daughters hand, he would not embarrass him. That was how we did the introduction and everything went on fine. The pastors that broke away from the church all came back and made peace with my father.
And that was how you got married to Kefee?
Yes. And that was the beginning of the problem. On the wedding day, I noticed that her mum called her inside the room and told her some things. She was so sad on that day. Till date, she has not told me what her mother told her or why she was in that mood. I didn’t understand what happened. She remained very sad for three days and she never slept with me.
Don’t you think her mood then was because she was living the home she had known all her life to a new place? Most brides feel that way on their wedding day.
That is possible. But she didn?t tell me what her problem was. She finally decided to sleep with me two weeks later. The next time we slept together was two months later. I am not mincing words.
….Before marriage, were you sleeping with her?
Hmmmm… I can’t really tell you that. But all I can tell you is that I met Kefee a virgin. That was what made me loved her the more. I never saw her as an indecent girl. If I had seen her as a wayward girl, I don’t think I would have married her.
…..Was it because you got married that you changed your plans to go to the US?
Yes. I have never really admitted it. Yes, I had the vision of a mobile choir, even though the break up in the church destroyed the whole thing.
Kefee was all I had to push. I felt she was a dream I could actualise. The entire family travelled out of the country, I was supposed to join them, but I refused. I was scared that if I travelled, I might not get married to Kefee. In any case, I will not blame her. It was my decision to stay back in Nigeria. I won an American visa lottery, I tried to backdate the marriage certificate and they found out and denied me visa.
….When did this dream of creating Kefee’s Branama come up?.
Actually, when the mobile choir thing didn’t work and my travelling didn’t work too, I started pushing Kefee and my sister, Estee. They were a group. I wrote their songs for them and somehow, we came out with a video. But I found that people wanted more of audio. Along the line, Estee travelled out and Kefee was left alone. I had to start Alecs Music in Lagos. I suggested she should do more of traditional music, which was so natural with her. I actually wrote all the songs on her first album, including Branama. All she did was translate the song into her language. On that album, she said that was the only song written by her. I guess that was where I kind of spoilt her. In the new album, I wrote 14 of the songs, but I see on the album, all songs written by Kefee.
Branama 1 was a hit. We hadn’t got married. I met some politician friends and, somehow, I organised an album launch. Remember that all this while, there was no support from my family. By God’s grace, I come from a very well-to-do family. But my family didn’t see my vision with me, so they didn’t support me. They felt I was rebellious. After the launch, we got N2.5 million.
The money was paid into her father’s account. It took about a month for her father to remit the money into her account.
….When did you guys move to Lagos?
When the album got pirated, we had to come to Lagos in order to fight piracy. Since the money had been paid into her account, it was only natural to take money from there and open the Lagos office. I got the studio equipment later on and we paid gradually over time. I spent so much money to organise the album launch. We got N2.5 million and she said it was all hers. I never knew we had a problem then. But now, she is saying she paid for the office. I said that was wrong. It was just that we didn?t sign a contract. If we had signed a contact, I would have been making more money from the whole thing than her. When everything went back to normal, from the sales of the album and shows, I got her a car. And not long after, we got married. There wasn’t much money to play around with, so I didn?t buy my own car. But then, I noticed that over any little misunderstanding, she would say ?give me my car keys?. I noticed over time that there was no respect. I couldn?t take it any more. I had to call my parents, sent some money to them and they got me a car from the US. If I hadn’t given them any money, they still would have got me a car. But I still have my intergrity even before my parents. I had to pay them for the car.
….Did you fight over money?
We used to run one account. Ever since my parents got married, they have been running a joint account. I thought we could do that, but I found that it wasn?t working, so she had to open her own account. There was no way I would be ripping her off if she had her own account. But as the man of the house, I was still paying the bills and even taking care of her needs. If she had to assist for any reason, she got her money back.
….You said she denied you sex. What do you think was the problem?
She told me that the fact that she was circumcised made her not to enjoy sex. I believed her. She would cry each time we made love. She would just lie on the bed and tell me to do whatever I wanted. I couldn’t be an animal, so I didn’t do anything with her most of the time. It was terrible. I told her we should see the pastor or a psychologist, but she said we shouldn?t tell anybody about such things.
…..You then decided to get sexual satisfaction outside your home.
No. Believe me, I tolerated this thing for a long time.
But you have got to believe me, Kefee was even the one that suggested that I should indulge in extra marital affairs. I thought she was silly, but she would encourage me and tell me to go ahead and come back and give her the details.
….We learnt that you actually slept with some of her friends.
The Stella she is talking about was her PA. The first day we met the girl, she was the one that suggested that I should take the girl to bed. I didn’t reply her. But a few days later, she told me she wanted the girl to be her PA. So the girl started coming to the house. But I noticed that Kefee started feeling threatened by the girl’s presence. Each time the girl came into the house, that would be the time Kefee would suggest we make love. That was why I started inviting the girl to the house more often so as to be able to sleep with my wife.
….When did the real problem begin?
It all started on March 16, 2008, on a Sunday morning. There was a programme in Abuja and she was supposed to go and minister in church. She said there was no need for me to join her and that I should just drop her at the airport and come and pick her up when she came back. I agreed. But when she came back from Abuja, I started noticing some changes.
Kefee never liked staying at home alone. But since she came back, Kefee could afford to stay alone and she was always with her phone. It was strange. For the first time, Kefee would walk away while we are recording.
She would be away for at least an hour and nobody would know where she was. She was always telling me she was playing games on
her phone or that she was holding family meeting with her mom on the phone. I never really bought those excuses. After about two or three weeks, I had to investigate her phone. It was all about her phone. As she slept one night, I went through her inbox and the first message I saw was sent to her by a man called Uche. It reads, How can you continue to stay with a man you say you don’t love?? She replied with, I have to take this step by step. We can’t rush this. I promise I will get out. I love you I read a lot of things about babies in the text messages. It was obvious that she had told him we didn?t have a child. He kept telling her how he was going to give her twins from their first intercourse.
….What did you do?
I understood what was going on. I knew, from the text messages, that they hadn?t met again after the first time. I thought the fault was from me, that probably there were some things I wasn?t doing right. I had to buy her things, take her out and do all manner of things to rekindle my love. I didn’t even raise the texts I read. I pretended as if I didn’t know about it. I made her assure me of her love and she did. I checked her phone again the third day and the guy was telling her he was coming to Lagos and he would make her feel like a real woman. I knew that if I didn’t speak out, she might sneak out to meet him. I called her and told her I already knew what was going on. I thought she would apologise, but she never said anything. By the time she said something after a long silence, she said we had to forget about it. I was shocked. She told me that for her to feel something for the guy meant that it couldn’t have been love that we had. Honestly, I started begging her, but she said it was over. I told her to take her time before she took any decision. She was still communicating with the guy and there was nothing I could do about it. If I got really angry and shouted, she would tell me that if I wanted, she would leave the house immediately.
…Was that when you started beating her?
I have never laid my hands on Kefee. Probably she wanted me to, but I never did. The closest I got to doing so was on the day she turned me down with a lot of hurtful words like you are not a man. I came to the siting room and started playing a video game on my Play Station. She came into the sitting room, took the remote control and changed the channel, saying she wanted to watch something more serious. I took the remote control and changed the channel back. Then she too changed it and held unto the remote control. I had to get up to collect the remote control from her. In the process, I twisted her arm until she let go of the remote control. That was the closest I came to beating her.
….Apart from the Uche guy, was she seeing any other man?
No, I don’t think so. I never accused her of bringing men into the house, and she never did such. I never did so as well. I can?t accuse her of what she didn’t do.
Why did you refuse to talk about all this before now?
This is the first time I am actually speaking out. I am saying this now because I have been pushed to the wall. I am not bitter. Neither am I throwing arrows. But I am just saying the truth about how it all happened.
….But don’t you think you could have resolved this problem without allowing it to get this messy?
It could have been resolved if she had not gone as far as sleeping with this guy. If I never knew about it, it would have been a lot easier.
….Who told you she had sex with the guy?
There was a text the guy sent to her and he told her that they should forget about the relationship if she wasn’t ready to see him. She replied that she was going to come and see him first thing the next morning. I tried stopping her from going but somehow, she went.
When she came back, I noticed she was always scratching her private part and all that, and she would go to the pharmacy to buy drugs. I checked her phone again and read that she was accusing the guy of giving her STD and he was denying it.
I told her I knew what was going on and that she should stop taking drugs that she knew nothing about and go to the hospital and treat herself. I was the one that took her to the hospital.
Did she ever come back to beg you that she wanted to come back?
There was a time she came and told me that she wanted us to be friends. By then, she had moved out of the house. She was showing me the guy’s text messages and said she needed my advice. I told her that the guy was not serious. Then she started crying and asked me how we got to this point. I held her. Believe me, it was passionate. At that point, I knew she was going to say she wanted to come back, and she said so.
….Why didn’t you accept her?
It was too fresh to think about forgiving her. We had 10 years to make this thing work. It hadn’t been a fantastic marriage, but I didn?t want to get involved in a divorce. It is against what we believe in. But we had crossed the line and there was nothing we could do.
The next thing, she said I should get out of her house. I did.
….What is the next thing you want to do now?
I can’t wait to resettle. I didn’t plan my life to be single at this time. I am going to take my time though.
But I need badly to settle down. I don’t have a girlfriend yet. I have not found anybody yet. But I am going to take my time for the wound to heal before I get somebody to settle down with and move on with life. Then again, I don’t think I would get into all these artistes stuff again. Thank God, all my contracts with all my artistes have expired. I am going to stick to just my video production. I don?t want to expose myself anymore. No way!
Do you regret your marriage?
I can’t say I regret it. I believe it is just a lesson. It would only make me a better man.
….In those three years of your marriage, were there some good times?
Yes. There were times that are hard to forget. I used to see her as my dream project. We had gone through a lot of things that I thought would never make us break.
I never saw this coming. We were accused in church falsely and we went through the struggles of making things work. We went through hard times when my family neglected me. We were friends. I thought the best marriages were built on friendship. We were inseparable. I never knew this thing would end like this.
….What if she comes back?
She has tried to. Maybe it would have worked. But now, I don?t think I want to consider it. Never! What she did to me, I don?t think I would ever do it to her. It hurts so much. I never saw this coming.