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‘He Was Not A Good Father’ -Yeni Kuti Gets Candid About Growing Up With Her Father, Fela Anikulapo Kuti

‘He Was Not A Good Father’ -Yeni Kuti Gets Candid About Growing Up With Her Father, Fela Anikulapo Kuti

Yeni Kuti, one of the daughters of Afro-beat legend, Fela Anikulapo Kuti has said her father was a bad father to them while they were growing up.

The mother of one stated this during an interview with popular media personality, Chude Jideonwo, but added that she never told him that when he was alive.

She recalled a day her dad came in and said they are useless children. The media personality further said that while Fela and his first son, Femi Kuti, were always at odds, she never confronted him about not being a good father.

Yeni added that her brother, Femi used to have running battles with him, saying that “Femi will give it to him straight. However, she said her father was an icon and a role model.

READ ALSO: ‘I Won’t Leave My Husband If He’s Cheating’ -Yeni Kuti States Her Reason

She said;

“He [Fela] was not quite a good father. No [I never told him that he isn’t a good father]. Maybe Femi, not me. Femi and Fela used to have battles. And Femi will give it to him straight.

Shola and I, we were like timid. You know, they said, ‘When two elephants are fighting, the grass will keep quiet.

I can remember one day, Fela just came and said, ‘three of you are useless children’. Femi just said, ‘for what?’ Femi just started facing him and then they started facing each other. Shola and I will say, ‘it’s okay’. Fela will say, ‘No’. And Femi just said, ‘let him go’.

I don’t think I have ever had that kind of confrontation with my father. Maybe because I was a woman.”

ALSO READ: Yeni Kuti Spills On The Circumstance That Led To Her Brother, Femi’s Wife Walking Out Of Their Marriage

Yeni went further to shed light on the cause of her father’s death. Fela passed away on August 2, 1997, and his brother, Olikoye Ransome-Kuti, publicly announced that Fela had died from complications related to AIDS.

Yeni revealed that initially, she and her siblings rejected the decision made by their uncle to disclose that their father had died of AIDS.

However, after numerous persuasions from family members, they eventually agreed to allow their uncle to make the announcement.

Yeni said she later discovered that her uncle’s decision was the best because it put speculations about the cause of the death of the legendary musician to rest permanently.

Her words,

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“Then, I didn’t think the decision by his brother [Dr. Olikoye Ransome Kuti] to announce that he [Fela] died of AIDS was the best.

“I remember we [Fela’s children] had a big fight with my uncle at a time. They had already diagnosed Fela with AIDS at the hospital.

“Uncle Koye wasn’t in town when the diagnosis came. And he came maybe about two days later…Then he called us, Femi, Shola and I, ‘you know what has happened, I’m going to announce to the press that he has AIDS.’

“We said, ‘No, way’. At that time, we still thought Fela would survive. We said, ‘look, it’s not your place to announce that Fela has AIDS, if Fela survives, let him.’ And he said, ‘Okay, you have a point.’

“But then, Fela now died. And he [Dr. Olikoye Ransome-Kuti] said he is going to announce that Fela had AIDS.

“We quarreled with him. The whole family started talking to us, ‘it’s not good to lie, people are still going to discover.’ So, reluctantly, we agreed.

“But I have to say it now, I think it was the best decision that my uncle made. If he had not announced it, till now they [journalists] will still be doing underground ‘what killed Fela?”


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