Sir Victor Uwaifo: The Joromi Crooner and His Guitar - A Call For Immortalization

Nigeria's music history and the art of merry-making is summed up in the classic old renditions of the Masters of the Guitar, the Piano, the saxophone and the combination of instruments to form melodious, unhurried vibes. Today's musicians have about 4 minutes to drop their singles. Sir Victor Uwaifo is just starting to roll at this stage.

However, on August 28, 2021, the 'Guitar Boy' and'Joromi' crooner dropped his Guitar, perhaps to pick it up again in the great beyond. The Mami Wata exponent and extraordinary Edo folklorist, Philosopher and Cultural Ambassador Plenipotentiary left for 'Erinmwin' without carrying his famed Guitar.

For his teeming fans across the globe, he has left an indelible mark. Late Victor Uwaifo died at the age of 80, even that was still shocking for a man who possessed so much life and youthfulness in him.

Prof. Sir Victor Efosa Uwaifo MON, JP, was, without doubt, an inventor, philosopher, legend, sculptor, architect, engineer, sportsman, and humanist. He mastered the art of music, a blend of highlife and jazz that speaks to the soul.

He's left the skills, creativity and talent for the coming generation to explore. Such talents grace our world not very often within a generation. He had a legendary appeal, was a vocal lyricist and music architect and unapologetically Nigeria's Balon D'Or of music.

His active role in national development cannot be overemphasized. As such, he was the first Commissioner for Arts, Culture and Tourism (Edo State), and first musician and instrumentalist honoured with the National Honours Merit,
Member of The Order of the Niger (MON) in 1983.”

In recognition of the exceptional role of Prof Sir Victor Uwaifo JP MON in the promotion of Edo language and Edo music, Benin folklores especially, he was honoured with Distinguished National Service Award 2008 called 'the Benin National Merit Award, an intellectual & reward system advancement initiatives of Benin National Congress Worldwide.

His exploits were visible internationally too. In 1995, Uwaifo was invited by the United Nations Staff Day International Committee to perform during the UN Golden Jubilee celebration. He was cited in the Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians,1983 edition; documented in the "Who's Who in Nigeria", "Who's Who in Africa", "Who's Who in the Commonwealth", and "Men and Women of Distinction in the Commonwealth".

He was an Honorary Member of the Biographical Advisory Council, Cambridge, England; a member of both the Performing Right Society and of the Advisory Board of American Heritage University, California, US. He was also the first Nigerian to win a gold disc in Africa for his Joromi album released in 1965 at the age of 24 years.

In lieu of this great achievement of an Edo illustrious son, the members and trustees of Benin National Congress worldwide request the Governor of Edo State, His Excellency Godwin Obaseki and President Muhammadu Buhari, GCFR to immortalize Prof Sir Victor Efosa Uwaifo, MON, JP.

In a statement made available to The Standard Gazette, the forum stated, "The honours will further encourage our youths to strive to achieve excellence in their endeavours and to bring international honours to our Land through arts and culture—the shaping and promotion of which Sir Victor Uwaifo epitomized."

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