Home MUSIC NIGERIA – Ubuesque situation: Canada denies Yemi Aladé visa

NIGERIA – Ubuesque situation: Canada denies Yemi Aladé visa

Yémi Alade ©Page Facebook Yémi Alade

For this Sunday, July 24, 2022, the last day of the 36th edition of the Festival International Nuits d’Afrique which is held in the heart of the Quartier des spectacles de Montréal, Yemi Aladé will not go on stage as planned for the closing concert. The party will be without her. Much to the public’s chagrin. Canadian authorities have denied her the visa. We have to believe that Canadians are quite astonishing.

Until then, the success of the Festival International Nuits d’Afrique was due to a number of reasons. Only one would be enough: several free shows bringing together big names of African music outside the continent and, above all, easy access to visas for African artists. However, Canadian authorities appear to have tightened the conditions for entry into Canada. The reasons may be legitimate. However, what should have looked like a great unifying event quickly became a source of division. At the limit, a imbroglio can create a diplomatic incident.

The reasons for a senseless refusal
According to Suzanne Rousseau, director and co-founder of the festival, the reasons for the Nigerian star’s visa refusal by Canadian authorities are primarily financial. They said, “They feared that she would want to stay in Canada” and settle permanently. Come on! Canada is not the Garden of Eden, for God’s sake! A humiliation. An insult to the fans of the artist who feel as a whole that the pretext is far-fetched. We are not talking about a terrorist or a Russian double agent who, in their opinion, could be a threat to Canadian national security.

Yémi Alade ©Page Facebook Yémi Alade

The organizers had taken out the accordion and the speakers. Yemi Aladé had been announced with great publicity. He was expected, energetic, more than ever with his loud and catchy voice. This young lady! A real fireball on stage. The little guys, who were looking for clothes to surprise fashion, came to see her and hear her sing some songs from her new album “Empress”, released in 2020. Too bad. The decibel war won’t happen. Yemi Aladé, the Nigerian queen of Afro Pop, has been denied a visa by Canadian authorities: No visa! She will not be able to make the trip. Apparently the organizers found a musical ersatz…but Yémi is unique.

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When I say no, I fall for it. I am not the only one. People are furious. It is a legitimate anger. Why refuse the visa to an artist, the African pop star #1, for such crazy reasons? Which one? According to Canadian authorities, it could “take root” in this country, a vast expanse of snowy land. What do these Canadians believe? Darn. Yet, as far as we know, she is in no conflict with the law. Neither in Nigeria. Even less so internationally. She is a lady of good quality. The Festival International Nuits d’Afrique is not the first release of this talented artist who does not finish to fill the stadiums of the whole world, to sing sold out. We are talking about YEMI ALADÉ, the star who collaborated with Beyoncé, Mary J. Blidge and Angélique Kidjo. With 4 albums, many dance mixes and more than 100 million views on Youtube, this goodwill ambassador to the UN is not a starlet in lack of success or host country. Canadian authorities would benefit from getting up to date.


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