Do you really know what it means for someone to die? Have you ever experienced death in your family?
If you have, then you would understand what death is and what effects it can have on any person. It's for this reason I find it very difficult to understand why the issue of death is handled like a source of entertainment in our showbiz industry.
Of what benefit would it be to spread word that someone is dead when indeed that person is alive and probably feasting on Ashanti fufu. I`ts rather unfortunate this unruly phenomenon is rapidly creeping into our entertainment industry. On more than two occasions, there have been rumours which have sought to indicate that Super OD is dead. Super OD may be old but why should we claim he is dead when he is not. Quite recently, a website published a story and made a categorical confirmation of the death of Super OD. Within seconds, the false news of Super OD went viral on social media and other sources of information. I was quite disappointed to later find out that the website only pulled off the story but did not render any apology to Super OD and his family for that unprofessional act of journalism.
Some weeks back, when Shatta Wale traveled abroad for some shows, his manager Bulldog came out to debunk rumours that the artiste had died. Of much difficulty is the source of such false news about the death of our celebrities. I may not be able to recollect all the instances of celebrities who were falsely reported dead but it seems like within the past three months, there have been several false reportage in that respect.
On Saturday November 2, 2013 as usual, I listened to my award-winning entertainment show, Showbiz Xtra on Happy fm with Dr. Cann. On that programme, Daddy Lumba granted Dr. Cann an interview and debunked all the rumours spreading in town that he Daddy Lumba was dead. According to Daddy Lumba, in as much as he got very sick sometime back, he didn't understand why people would say he is dead when he is rather alive.
Immediately a day afterwards, news about the alleged death of Van Vicker went viral on social media. It was mentioned that Van Vicker got involved in a terrible motor accident on his way to church and a picture of Van Vicker soaked in blood was also making rounds from one website to the other. Later on in the day, Van Vicker took to Facebook to debunk all the news surrounding his supposed death. ''There is a post on an imposter's page that I had an accident this morning on my way to church and I might die from bleeding. It's a rumor and a stunt to drive traffic to that page. I am well and in great health. Jehovah dey by my side. Stay easy'' was Van's post on Facebook.
Surprisingly the false post concerning Van Vicker's death recorded tens of thousands comments as well as likes. Does this mean that apart from sex which many people are interested in, the next issue of interest to people is death? I would advise all websites, bloggers, newspaper owners and other owners of any other source of information to be circumspect in reporting about the death of our celebrities. It's totally insane to spread false information to the effect that a celebrity is dead. Any media house that is able to break the news of a celebrity is very likely to gain massive patronage but in the quest to do so, every media house should be sure of information before it is made public.
Of much disappointment to me is the fact that none of the celebrities who may have been said to have died, have never tried to take action against any media house for spreading false news about their death. If the laws of the land has any provisions for the celebrities to turn onto whenever they are said to be dead, when they indeed are alive, I would encourage any celebrity to take legal action against any media house that spreads falsehood about his/her death.
One important twist to this false death news is the fact that these same celebrities may in some instances be responsible for such actions. Some do this just to gain some amount of attention prior to a new song or movie to be released. Publicity stunts do work magic in the entertainment industry but I believe the subject of death should not be taken as a joke.
In as much as Super OD, Shatta Wale, Van Vicker, Daddy Lumba and a host of other celebrities are still alive even though some irresponsible so-called journalists reported that they were dead, I pray that these celebrities live longer and stronger to entertain us. I wouldn't be surprised if in the few weeks to come, an irresponsible writer or journalist spreads falsehood that another celebrity is dead. If that should happen, which celebrity do you think would be mentioned? Your guess. I rest my case!!!
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