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Tiwa Savage Why are we still talking about singer's dressing?

Can you guys just leave Mummy JamJam alone?

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Last weekend, Nigerian Pop Star, Wizkid ticked another box off his bucket list, by filling the O2 Arena in London, a 20,000 capacity venue in London, England for the Afrorepublik festival. He didn't do this alone; Wizkid had the best of Nigeria's talents for support.

play Winning, at London's O2 Arena for the Afrorepublik Festival (Bella Naija)
 

There was, of course, the "Amuludun of Odo-Aje" - if you don't know you better ask somebody - Skepta, Not3s, Tekno, Mr Eazi... and Tiwa Savage. For many reasons, fans were eager to see her; but not long after, Miss Savage performed, the conversation surround Afrorepublik changed from music to what a 38-year old mother of one wore during her performance.

For one of her biggest nights as a performing artiste, the singer chose a white "What We Wear" T-shirt and showed off large chunks of skin in distressed black shorts from urban fashion house, Coal N Terry Vintage.

ALSO READ: Tiwa Savage and Wizkid rumours take on a new life after their O2 Arena performance

What those distressed shorts showed was the actual subject of controversy.

 

Fans criticized Tiwa for "being indecent", "not being bright when it comes to dressing". One benevolent commentator asked her to "watch her dressing for the sake of her children". She only has one.

It's become a little too excessive. There's a sense that the criticism is about something more than Tiwa's dressing at AfroRepublik.

Two years ago, it would have seemed contestable but today, Tiwa Savage is the most news-worthy female musician on the African continent.

She has had a hell of a year, "Ma Lo" has 20-odd million YouTube views and counting. There's also her pyrrhic victory that is our ill-advised song of the summer, "Codeine Diet".

What has amplified her presence in the news and blogs is her supposed romantic relationship with another of her frequent collaborators, Wizkid, and its perceived manifestations, in clandestine lunch dates, in kisses and suggestive messages on festival stages.

"If no be Starboy, then who e be..."

That relationship has come with its own baggage. As I wrote earlier in this seemingly endless timeline, Tiwa has had to deal with a lot more of the criticism that has followed the rumoured relationship than her hedonistic (alleged) love interest.

 

The only reason why we're so concerned about Tiwa Savage's dressing is her relationship with Wiz.

ALSO READ: Tiwa Savage and Wizkid are the celebrity power couple we need

As the rumours pour in and the two make displays of affection in public, the age gap between the two - Tiwa is older by a decade and some - has become the major point of criticism for both.

In particular, Tiwa Savage is now being maligned for, fresh from a very eventful marriage, becoming romantically involved with an artist who is more known for the products of his relationships with the women he's been linked with, than his devotion to any of them.

The fact is that Tiwa and Wiz's relationship is a stubborn child with a point to make. It is an affront to so many Nigerian conventions about marriage, sexual relationships and age.

It is very uncomfortable, so much so that the vitriol towards Tiwa has now spread to many aspects of her personality and brand.

An unfair conclusion

Afrorepublik was not the first time Tiwa was dressing in a controversial manner, but the reactions this week had a sense of moral conviction about them.

play Wizkid had some very capable help at the Afrorepublik concert. (Smade Enterrtainment)

 

As hopeful as I have been about their rumoured relationship, this isn't exactly what Tiwa needs at this point.

They say all publicity is good publicity; until the artiste reeks of an image that they could have helped manage, at the least.

More importantly, though, the change in attitude towards Tiwa Savage reeks of a hostility that is more judgemental than anything else.

It says a lot that the artiste who is facing criticism is the woman. Wizkid is enjoying great PR at this point; like someone added another feather to the ladies' man cap he keeps at home because it's too heavy with feathers to carry around.

We're talking about Tiwa's dress because we've come to comfortable, judgemental conclusions about her standards.  Mummy JamJam deserves much more than that.

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