When UN, TuFace, others took IDPs’ cause to Transcorp Hilton
From AIDOGHIE PAULINUS and OLIVIA KALU Abuja
The TuFace Foundation, in collaboration with the United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR), held a musical concert tagged “Eargasm: The Climax of Sonic Pleasure” in Abuja to raise funds for internally displaced persons (IDPs) in the country, particularly IDPs in the Boko Haram-ravaged North East.
The concert also had collaborations from OnoBello.com, Buckwyld Media, YNaija.com, NET, Boomerang, YANKEE Entertainment, et cetera. The event, which held at the Congress Hall of the Transcorp Hilton Hotel, Maitama, Abuja, witnessed musical performance from Nigerian hip-hop artiste, Innocent Idibia, popularly known as TuFace, who was as the organiser of the event. Other musicians who added glamour to the concert were AJ, Kiral, Pamela Braide, Kelly Hansome, Waje and Styplus.
Midway into the event, old memories were rekindled as the family of Bongos Ikwue, in company with former Benue State Deputy Governor, Mr Steve Lawani, and TuFace cut a cake to mark the 75th birthday of the Benue State-born ace musician. Though he was unavoidably absent, the matriarch of the family, Mrs Josephine Ifeyinwa Ikwue, expressed gratitude to the audience for the show of love.
Speaking with Daily Sun, Idibia said he was excited over the turnout, as it was something for a good cause.
“For me, I appreciate everybody that has come out. Somehow, they contributed to make life easier for some people,” he said.
The TuFace Foundation’s motto is “Service to humanity.”
He said, “Anything I can do to add value to peoples’ lives, no matter how little it is, that is what I will do.”
When he was queried about why he was passionate about the struggles of the less privileged, particularly IDPs, the Idoma, Benue State-born musician said, “You know I have always preached about one love. There is something that touches my heart every time that I see people not able to do stuff that, all things being equal, they can do.”
In the eyes of TuFace, “many things are just limiting them. These people were just in their homes peacefully and some people came and just scattered everything. So, for me, if I can reach out to one, two, three, 10, 15, 20, and if another person can reach out to 20, before you know it, it is 40. And if another person can reach out to 50,, it would be hundred-and-something.
“We should join hands because one man cannot do everything. I am passionate about it because I am somebody that wouldn’t want to see my people suffering,” Idibia said.
TuFace has no definite or particular line of assistance he is channelling his resources to. He is rather channelling them into the already thought-out plans of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees for the IDPs.
“Right now, I am working with the UNHCR and the UNHCR already have many things on ground. They have the educational aspect and they have shelter. In fact, if you go there, most of the shelter is being provided by UNHCR. I mean, feeding, clothing, mattresses, so many things. So, I am trying to support the UNHCR because they are a credible organisation. I know that, if I give them something, they will make good use of it.”
For award-winning singer, Aituaje Iruobe, also known as Waje, the initiative to assist the IDPs motivated her to grace the event.
“I live in Lagos, but I can’t be ignorant of what is going on in other parts of Nigeria.
“Sometimes, we feel like these things don’t affect us. The cost of living keeps going up because places where things could have been produced, they can’t produce. These are Nigerians and we are all one. We are supposed to be our brother’s and sister’s keeper. We may not be able to totally fight terrorism, but we must play our part to ensure that we give them, if not luxurious, a comfortable place,” she said.
UNHCR Country Representative, Jose Antonio Canhandula, said the initiative was a positive one in the sense that there are presently Nigerian voices talking about Nigerian problems. “And indeed, the problems in the Northeast Nigeria that created millions of displaced people have so far been taken up by a number of international organizations. And when we start seeing in the government and the public and even the musicians and artists come together like this to start talking about their population and mobilizing resources to solve our own problems, it is actually a major achievement.”