Nigerian reggae star, Ras Kimono , has died .
Our correspondent gathered that the dreadlocked musician had slumped at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport , Lagos , while waiting to board a flight to the United States , on Saturday night.
According to sources close to him , Kimono was immediately rushed to an unnamed hospital in Ikeja and then taken to another hospital on Lagos Island where he later died on Sunday morning .
The death of the artiste , who was a native of Onicha Olona in the Aniocha North Local Government Area of Delta State and who recently clocked 60 , was confirmed by the President of the Performing Musicians Association of Nigeria , Pretty Okafor and the Chairman of the Copyright Society of Nigeria , Chief Tony Okoroji .
The event has since thrown members of the Nigerian music and culture community into deep mourning .
In his reaction, Okafor described Kimono ’ s death as very shocking . He said , “Ras Kimono was a very humble and excellent person. He was more like a father to me than a friend or colleague . He was one musician that never had any issue with anybody in the music industry . We are really going to miss him .”
Another reggae musician , African Chyna , said that Kimono ’s death had left a vacuum in the music industry that would be difficult to fill. Describing the deceased as a great musician who died before his time , he said , “ Nigeria has just lost a great icon. He was not supposed to die so soon . May his gentle soul rest in perfect peace .”
A former President PMAN , Tee Mac Iseli , also expressed shock at the sad event . “I am shocked . I took him to PMAN as a young man in the 80 s. We had since been very close , ” he said .
Also , reacting , Governor Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta State described the death of Kimono as a great loss to the people of the state and Nigeria ’s music industry .
Okowa , in a statement signed by his Chief Press Secretary , Charles Aniagwu , on Sunday , commiserated with the Nigeria music industry , family and friends of Kimono .
He said , “ I received with sadness the news of the passing away of Ras Kimono , a great reggae legend . He will be remembered for his hit song, ‘Rumbar Stylee ’ .
“I join lovers of reggae music to mourn this great loss . He belonged to an era of great reggae music exponents in Nigeria .”
The governor added that Kimono had spent all his life promoting good governance through reggae music , good entertainment and healthy community relations .
Still shocked by the sad event , a popular musician , Baba Fryo , said he spoke with the deceased three days before his passage . “ We spoke and, based on my observation , he wasn’t sick. I am worried at the news of his death. I am shocked ,” he said .
Reacting to a message posted on Facebook , a close friend of Kimono , Iwa Okosun , suggested that Kimono might have been ill . He said , “We were together on Wednesday afternoon . He said he was coming from the clinic . ”
Then , addressing the deceased , Okosun added , “Just last month , we were with you celebrating your 60 th birthday . I ’m in shock. God will strengthen your family to bear this huge pain . Rest in peace , Kimono .