Seun, a sister to the deceased broadcaster and entertainer, Gbenga Adeboye, talks about her brother’s life and death, career and other issues
You are a singer and radio broadcaster. How did your career start?
All my siblings have the talent of composing songs and singing. We were all choristers in the church. However, my career started with me helping my brother (Gbenga) but I did not have any interest in entertainment at the time. It was when I paid a visit to my parents in Ode Omu, Osun State, that my father wrote a letter and asked me to give Alhaji Gboyega Lawal (a broadcaster). When I got to the latter, he ‘tied’ me down in one way or the other. I always tell people that it was Lawal who wooed me into the entertainment industry.
From there, I started working with the Nigeria Television Authority Ibadan. That was where I started the programme called, ‘Feso Logba’. From there, I moved to Bond FM, Lagos where I started the programme called, ‘Jogbo’. I later proceeded to Radio Kwara, Harmony FM and many others.
As a sister to the late Gbenga Adeboye, what can you tell us about him?
He was a lovely and special child. Our parents and everybody else in the family are funny, but his own was extraordinary because he made a career out of it. He was both a disciplinarian and jovial person.
Does your family still get royalties for his work?
When it comes to his works, I don’t want to say anything that will affect anybody because I want peace to reign. If I go deeper, I will become emotional and say certain things I don’t want to say. I just pray that everyone that had a hand in messing up his career, will be rewarded accordingly by God. We don’t even know the people that are (still) releasing his works. When he died, we found out that everybody was just reproducing his records. They were not even using the master copy anymore. But, I know that his master tapes were given to Gbenga Adewusi (Bayowa), and he released some jokes that weren’t made for record. He was releasing a lot of things and that were between him and Gbenga’s wife (Omolara).
19 years after his demise, has there been any colloquium, lecture or foundation in his memory?
I have plans to do that in 2023 (which will mark the 20th anniversary of his death). I want to remember him. I don’t want to call it a celebration because in my family, we are still sad because we lost a lot of things by his demise. I want to inaugurate a non-governmental organisation that would conduct free surgical operations for people.
What is the relationship between Gbenga’s wife, Omolara, and your family? Do you communicate?
No (we don’t communicate). But, let me say this because I don’t want to lie to anyone. Some months ago, she called our first born, and that was the first time she tried to communicate (with the family).
Is it true that Gbenga had two wives?
He had divorced his first wife, Olawunmi, before getting married to Omolara. However, Olawunmi had two children for him—Segun and Sade.
Is Olawunmi still in touch with the Adeboyes?
We communicate all the time. If I want to talk to her now, I will call her; and vice versa.
It was said that Wednesdays were special to your brother. Why was that so?
Yes, it’s true. He was born on a Wednesday, started his broadcasting career on a Wednesday, he was baptised on a Wednesday, he died on Wednesday and he was buried on Wednesday. I was born on Wednesday too.
There have been a lot of rumours about how Gbenga died. What is the true picture?
I cannot talk about it because I don’t like lying. If I talk about it, it will affect a lot of people.
Do you think he did not die a natural death?
Of course, he did not, but I don’t want to talk about it. There was a particular Muslim cleric— I don’t know if he is dead— I went to confront. He was introduced to Gbenga by an enemy considered as a friend. The said friend connived with the cleric, who made a concoction for Gbenga and put the liver of a leopard in it. Meanwhile, a leopard’s liver is poisonous. My brother did not eat it but he showed it to Yinka Ayefele’s manager, Mr Adewuyi. The cleric confessed that it was that friend that asked him to put the leopard’s liver in the concoction.
Why do you refuse to speak on the grey areas of his death? Do you feel threatened by some people?
Threatened? When he died, I was initially ready to die with him. I had a lot of secrets with me and I was ready to die. I cannot be threatened because no one can kill anyone twice. Gbenga is dead and his enemies cannot kill him again. I am not threatened. I just don’t want his children to read anything negative about their father and be sad.
The Adeboye family seems not to be on good terms with Gbenga Adewusi. Why is that so?
It was because of the role he played during Gbenga’s burial. He was actually not invited for the burial. He just showed up and was going too far. He was uncontrollable. That was why we had an issue with him.
What is the greatest mistake you think your brother made?
The greatest mistake he made was trusting too much, and not harkening the call of God to work for Him.
What do you consider to be his greatest achievement?
His greatest achievement was helping people and making them laugh.
Talking about your music career, how many albums have you released?
I have released three albums.