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Sunday, 16 June 2013

Things Get Messy as Tarus Riley and Dermaco Disappears in Thin Air

The Remains

A planned reggae music concert turned chaotic in Nairobi after major Jamaican artists failed to turn up on stage to perform on Saturday night. 

At least 10 youths were arrested, several people robbed and property destroyed as angry fans turned chaotic fighting to get back their cash they had paid for the show.

Jamaica's top dancehall singers Tarrus Riley and Demarco and Ivorian Alpha Blondy were scheduled to perform at the Kenyatta International Conference Centre ( KICC) on Saturday night but did not turn up.

They were said to be holed up in their Eastlands Hotel in Hurlinghum area after the organisers of the show allegedly failed to honor their pledge to pay them.

They were to perform at KICC as part of ongoing celebrations of Kenya’s 50 years of independence. 

More than 3,000 fans had turned up for the show after paying a staggering Sh2,500 for ordinary ticket and Sh5,000 for VIP.

Despite heavy downpour that was earlier on Saturday night experienced, the show kicked off well with the DJs and local artists entertaining the reggae lovers.

Things turned chaotic at about 2.30 am when it was clear the main artists were nowhere to be seen. 

Pleas from the DJs to the crowd to be patient did not bear fruits as they started to throw bottles, stones and other objects to the stage.

Then chaos broke out as the fans overwhelmed the security and descended to the stage vandalizing the music system.

Meanwhile, another group was busy mugging and robbing the “weak” ones.
It took almost an hour and the arrival of more police officers to chase the angry crowd from the scene.

Central OCPD Patrick Oduma said they arrested eight youths who were robbing and mugging pedestrians and vandalizing property.

It was more of a war because the youths were angry that their money had been wasted. We managed the situation later on but we did not throw any teargas,” said Oduma. 

He added unknown number of people were robbed of their property by the marauding youths as they left the site.

Some of the music enthusiasts said they were angered by the organisers of the show who did not pay the artists.

The organizers need to be charged in court because this is more of a robbery. We need our money from them because they even taint the name of reggae music,” said Tom Oladu, a fan who had turned up for the show.

We could not get an explanation from Dohty Family, Big Tunes Festival Music, Fire House, Krushial and Ghetto Radio who were listed as the organisers of the show.
Dohty Family’s Kris Darling did not respond to our calls and texts. 

Demarco has been in Nairobi for the last two weeks after he held his first much anticipated performance at the Carnivore Grounds on June 8. 

His one-hour non-stop performance then kept revellers on their feet as he belted out his most famous tracks such as Steady Wine, I Love My Life, Fallen Soldiers, Gal Dem Want, True FriendandKings and Queens. 

Riley and Blondy arrived in Nairobi on June 13.
Riley was accompanied by his Black Soil Band and renowned saxophonist Dean Fraser.

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