The Sad Story Of Semah Weifur

Have you ever wondered why Nigerian singer, Flavor, traveled to Liberia to adopt a son? The highlife superstar took his fans by surprise when he adopted a visually impaired Liberian singer, Semah Weifur, in 2017. Because Flavor already had two daughters from different women, many people assumed that his craving for a son influenced his decision to adopt one. So, who is Semah Weifur?

Semah was born blind and into poverty. For years, he had been in the care of a Monrovia-based NGO, Christian Association of the Blind, also known as CAB. Although life was not kind to him, Semah did not allow that to kill his spirit. Despite his unfortunate circumstances, Semah's dream was to become a singer. Two thousand kilometers away from Lagos, he idolized Flavour and MasterKraft – the producer responsible for most of the singer's hits – and was dying to meet them someday. His dream came true through a veteran Liberian musician, Queen Juli Endee, who, in 2016, collaborated with Flavor on her single "Atulaylay."

Queen Endee met Semah during a peace crusade at CAB, where the 11-year-old performed one of her songs, "No Shaking," and left her in awe. During that meeting, Semah told Queen Endee of his life-long desire to meet her co-collaborators, Flavour and MasterKraft, and his wish to make music with them. While she made no promises, Queen Endee did pray that Semah's dream would one day come true.

As fate would have it, Flavour and his producer visited Monrovia for a concert, and it didn't take too long for the news of Semah's adoration to reach Flavor's camp. After watching several videos of the boy singing his songs, Flavour got touched by the conditions that mitigated against the aspiring singer's dreams, so he decided to give Semah the wings to fly.

Before jetting out of Monrovia, Flavor met with Semah. The first meeting happened on March 21st, 2017, at an event to honor the highlife icon. Flavour was conferred with the title of Chief Zanzan of Liberia to recognize his 'immense contribution' to Africa through music. While the service went on, Queen Endee introduced the visually impaired aspiring singer to everyone in attendance. With an angelic voice, he held the microphone and sang Flavour's 2016 ode to mothers, "MAMA." The crowd gathered around to capture the moment. Towards the end, the muscular figure of Flavour unexpectedly crept up behind Semah and cuddled him gently. It was a beautiful moment, and the duo became inseparable from then on.

Semah grabbed hold of Flavour's dreads, his face, his gold chain, and anything he could find, perhaps to confirm that it was indeed the Nigerian superstar. Flavour would later claim he made a new friend Semah G. Weifur who sang his songs better than him. He might have oversold the performance slightly; nonetheless, Flavour saw potential in Semah.

Fast-forward to June 2017, when the highlife superstar released his fifth studio album, Ijele – The Traveler. It included "Most High," a gospel duet featuring Semah, as the last track. Released as an official single off the album, "Most High" became an instant hit played in every corner of the country, ranking at number one in several charts. Similarly, the official video for the song drew the attention of millions of people into the world of Flavour N'Abania and his newly adopted son, Semah Weifur.

One song then became seven, and on March 12th, 2018, Flavour and Semah released a joint gospel EP produced by MasterKraft and titled Divine. For an artist who's made a career off of debauchery and sexual proclivity, releasing a gospel album in itself is a minor miracle. So, while Flavour might be changing Semah's life, it's also fair to say that Semah is affecting Flavour's life as well.

Since his rise to fame, Semah has performed alongside his idol at several events across Africa, North America, and many more. However, Semah still has a long way to go before he can be considered a precocious talent. It's far too early to declare him a Cobhams Asuquo in the making, but for a child who dealt with a challenging set of cards from the day he was born, surely things can only get better from here.

A version of this story first appeared on Guardian Nigeria.
Segun Alabi

Segun Alabi is a news reporter at HotNaija. He covers a wide range of topics including news and celebrity showbiz

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