The story of Nigeria’s remarkable breakthrough in the world of Hip Hop and R&B in the last twenty five years or so cannot be complete without the contribution of this awesome, sensational singing duo. While many big-time artists were already making it and Nigerians thought they had seen the best, these prodigiously talented singers hit the scene with a bang to change the story.
In many African cultures, twins are regarded as special beings that have unique and peculiar origin as well as special divine and spiritual blessings which give them an edge over the ordinary folks in whatever they do. There is no better way to illustrate this in modern times than refer to the way and manner in which the Okoye twins – Paul and Peter – burst onto the music scene in the early 2000s.
They were a full package, great voices, wonderful songs, fantastic reflex and dance steps as one could be forgiven to mistake them for Michael Jackson. They were indeed the Nigerian version of the American-born King of Pop.
The greatest achievement of the Okoye brothers is that unlike many great talents we have seen in the past, they have refused to go down, their consistency and longevity on the big stage despite the influx of so many equally brilliant, younger singers in recent years, is worthy of commendation. They put in so much passion and hard work into their craft to the admiration of millions of music watchers all over the continent.
The Psquare brothers are among those Nigerian artistes who can hold their own and fly Nigeria’s flag in the international arena any day any time. They are ambassadors in their own right with one of the largest fan bases in the Nigeria and Africa. They are delight to watch on stage and a joy to listen to.
The recent in-fighting and petty, public squabbles among the three brothers – Jude, their elder brother and manager, Paul and Peter – have therefore come to many fans and entertainment watchers as huge surprise and a source of disappointment. Their fans were relieved to see them back together again recently with “Nobody ugly”, “Bank alert” and many other hit videos after the last disagreement which led to a temporary separation and thought the storm was over. They were wrong as the second part of the squabble has proven to be messier and more embarrassing than the first.
After another split rumour hit the media and some persons were yet to believe it, a video went viral recently showing Paul, Peter and Jude in hot exchange of words which almost led to exchange of fisticuffs. Even though their lawyer, Festus Keyamo, who witnessed the squabble in his office, has claimed that video was an old one, not many Nigerians believe him.
But it is public knowledge that the duo has had major disagreements in recent times with their business and nuclear families at the centre of the controversy.
Nigerians on social media have pointed to different persons and developments for the crisis in the group. An online poll conducted recently showed that Jude who serves as the CEO of square records and the wife of Peter okoye (Lola) have played huge roles in tearing the singing duo apart. The battle has-been said to pitch Peter and his wife on one side and Paul, his wife and their big brother, Jude on the other side.
According to the grapevine, Peter has complained that he has been branded by the group as a mere dancer with no spectacular singing talent. Peter, who believes Jude and Paul have been ganging up against him, has therefore suggested that the former quits as their manager to avoid more troubles.
Paul had however disagreed, saying if Jude quits, the group will have to split.
Other speculations have mentioned the tribe of Peter’s wife and his insistence on marrying her as an old wound which has failed to go away completely. Peter has however maintained that “family first” that his brothers must accept his wife fully or forget about peace in the group.
The clamour for independence and separate lifestyle of the twins has also been an issue. Operating a joint account and buying of properties together would be fine to the brothers but not the wives.
However, another source close to the group claimed that the crisis has nothing to do with their wives but that its strictly business related. They now have separate accounts and have shared their properties amongst themselves.
The source added that they are still family and a single Psquare brand but can both individually have separate projects, endorsement deals and can be featured separately in songs.
Observers of entertainment are waiting with bated breath to see if the partial separation will bring lasting peace to the family and business. Their fans can’t wait to see them back in the studio doing what they know how to do best.