Tanzanian artiste Ali Kiba found himself swimming in murky waters when he appeared late for his performance at the Mombasa Rocks Festival held at the Mombasa Golf Club last Saturday.
The event, which was headlined by American double platinum R&B sensation Chris Brown, saw Ali Kiba perform only two songs, Aje and Macmuga, before leaving the stage prematurely; visibly frustrated.
Ali Kiba performed after Nigeria’s Wizkid had taken to the stage, leaving many revelers confused on the protocol that was being used to call artistes to the dais.
Known to many, Wizkid was one of the two main acts of the event – deputising Chris Brown in terms of hierarchy – at least according to the event’s organizers. So when Kiba took to the stage after Wizkid, questions were raised.
It now emerges that Chris Brown’s security issued a threat to Kiba to vacate the stage so that the Loyal hit-maker could thrill fans – as the time allocated for Brown’s performance (minutes to 1am) had clocked.
“Go tell that man (Ali Kiba) to leave the stage in less than two minutes or else we will physically get him out of the podium,” Chris Brown’s security was heard, by our resident DJ, telling the floor manager.
The floor manager obliged. He went toward Kiba and whispered the order to him. However when the singer overstayed his welcome on stage, the microphone was switched off.
Ali Kiba in an October 10 interview with Radio Citizen’s Mambo Mseto host Willy Tuva claimed that someone played a dirty trick on him.
“Every artiste had a special agreement with the event organizers. Chris Brown’s contract stated he performs for 80 minutes and leave the stage right after,” Ali Kiba told Willy Tuva.
“I don’t know what transpired to an extent someone came and disconnected my microphone while I was on stage. I was not impressed. Many things happened, that left me confused,” said Ali Kiba.
“I saw Diamond Platnumz’s manager going to the backstage when I was performing. What was he going to do there? Of what relevance was he to the event? It did not paint a good picture, especially when people think that Diamond and I have differences, of which we do not have. However, what will people think when they see Diamond Platnumz’s manager at the backstage and almost immediately my microphone goes off?
“What even made him go to the backstage? There are many people who sat at the VIP reserve. If it is a must for someone of his caliber to attend the show, he should have remained rooted in the VIP section. What was he doing at the backstage?” posed Kiba.
Ali Kiba, however, claims he cannot directly link Diamond Platnumz’s manager to the crisis, though he was disappointed to see him at the backstage.
“I do not know if the microphone was switched off so that I make way for Chris Brown. I was taken aback. You know I have a huge fan base in Mombasa; and many fans, before I even took to the stage, wanted me to perform. And when I just took to the podium, even before performing a number of my hits, the microphone was disconnected. I think my fans understood me. It was not my fault,” said Ali Kiba.