The story of Ilerioluwa Oladimeji Aloba, popularly known as Mohbad or Imole (Light), begins with a tale of talent discovered and ends with that talent tragically destroyed. Between the prologue and the epilogue lies a life filled with genius, glory, and pain. On September 12, 2023, the final chapter of Mohbad’s life came to a sorrowful close.
**The Man Mohbad:**
Ilerioluwa was born on June 8, 1996, in the quaint town of Oke Eletu, Ikorodu, Lagos State. Despite a childhood marked by humble beginnings, his spirit of hustling ignited at a young age.
In a past interview, Mohbad revealed that he diligently saved every penny earned from carpentry work to book studio time for recording his songs. This unwavering dedication eventually propelled him to fame and success in the music industry.
**Rising to Fame:**
Mohbad’s breakthrough moment came in December 2020 when he collaborated with renowned record producer Rexxie on the hit song ‘KPK (Ko Por Ke)’. His subsequent single, ‘Feel Good’, released the following year, became a street anthem not only in Nigeria but also across many African countries.
Before these successes, Mohbad had inked a recording deal with Marlian Music, owned by the controversial Nigerian rapper Naira Marley, in 2019. The terms and duration of this deal remained undisclosed to the public.
**Fallout with Marlian Music:**
Mohbad’s troubles began when he decided to part ways with Marlian Music in October 2022. He publicly accused Naira Marley, the label’s boss, of orchestrating an assault against him after he requested a new manager. Mohbad even shared video evidence of injuries sustained during the alleged attack.
In a letter dated October 25, 2022, signed by his lawyer O.M Falade, Mohbad formally severed ties with the label. He cited “violent physical attacks,” a “threat to life” from Naira Marley, and the label’s failure to fulfill the terms of their 2019 contract as reasons for his departure. He also claimed the label withheld his royalties from monetized content and advances as mutually agreed since 2019.
**Battle with Depression:**
Mohbad’s exit from Marlian Music marked the beginning of a harrowing period in his life. He faced relentless threats from both the label and hoodlums believed to be sponsored by the label. These constant threats took a toll on his mental health, with his friend and collaborator Bella Shmurda revealing that Mohbad had attempted suicide.
Despite his struggles, Mohbad continued to share his talent with fans, even as his career seemed to crumble around him.
**Wife’s Heartbreaking Revelation:**
Following Mohbad’s sudden demise, his wife, Omowunmi, expressed her grief on social media. She revealed that their son, Liam, had just turned five months old on the same day that Mohbad passed away. Omowunmi lamented her efforts to keep him alive and shared the pain of their son growing up without his father.
**Sam Larry’s Connection:**
Within 24 hours of Mohbad’s death, a video surfaced online showing Samson Balogun, known as Sam Larry, and others disrupting a video shoot involving Mohbad and Zlatan Ibile. Armed men invaded the location, threatening Mohbad and causing chaos.
In a subsequent letter to the Nigeria Police Force, Mohbad claimed he was attacked during a video shoot on June 25, 2023, by Sam Larry and 15 others. They destroyed equipment worth over N5 million and allegedly assaulted Mohbad, who narrowly escaped with injuries. The armed men claimed to work for the Lagos monarch, Elegushi of Ikate-Elegushi Kingdom, Oba Saheed Elegushi.
**Oba Elegushi’s Disavowal:**
In response to Mohbad’s allegations, the Elegushi Royal Family disassociated themselves from Sam Larry. They clarified that Sam Larry was not a member of the royal family and had no official role within the kingdom. The family called for a thorough investigation into Mohbad’s death.
**Father’s Haunting Dream:**
Mohbad’s father, James Aloba, shared a haunting dream he had just two days before his son’s death. In the dream, he saw someone with a gun, and although he thought he had escaped harm, he never anticipated the tragic events that would follow.
Despite social media allegations, Mohbad’s father refrained from pointing fingers at anyone directly, but expressed concerns about the auxiliary nurse who administered an injection before his son’s passing.
**Statements from Naira Marley and Sam Larry:**
Sam Larry denied any involvement in Mohbad’s death, stating that the viral videos were from a year ago when he was not in the country. He expressed love for Mohbad and stressed that he had no ill intentions towards him.
Naira Marley also issued a statement acknowledging past disagreements but denying any harm wished upon Mohbad.
The Nigeria Police Force launched an investigation into Mohbad’s death on September 14, 2023. They committed to conducting a comprehensive inquiry into the matter, with the Lagos State Commissioner of Police leading the effort. They called on family members and associates with valuable information to come forward and assist in the investigation.
Mohbad’s sudden burial in the Ikorodu area of Lagos raised eyebrows and questions regarding the absence of an autopsy to determine the cause of death. The Lagos State Police Command assured that the body could be exhumed if necessary to aid the investigation.
**Fame Beyond the Grave:**
In the wake of his tragic passing, Mohbad’s music surged in popularity on social media and streaming platforms. His songs topped charts on Apple Music and Spotify in Nigeria and the UK.
Through his music, Mohbad had hinted at his pain and struggles, but these messages often went unnoticed by fans. His untimely death at the age of 27 placed him among the infamous “27 Club,” adding another chapter to the enigmatic tale of Ilerioluwa Oladimeji Aloba, known as Mohbad or Imole.
**Legacy Beyond the Grave:**
The price of fame had taken a heavy toll on Mohbad, and his battles had extinguished the light that once shone brightly. Despite the controversies, conflicts, and sudden end, Mohbad leaves behind a legacy that continues to resonate through his music. His pain, struggles, and ultimately, his passing, have etched a poignant chapter in the annals of Nigerian music.