Entertainment Mon, 6 Sep 2010

Glo Chases MTN Icon, Samini

By Hi Newspaper, September 7, 2010

Emmanuel Andrew Samini’s 2-year deal with MTN ended September 2, 2010, confirms our sources at MTN; but as the telecom giant prepares to renew the deal with its biggest music icon, Hi Newspaper has gathered that a business personality believed to be connected to telecom entrant, Globacom, has started moves to secure the King of African Dancehall should he re-thinks renewing his ‘yellow’ card.

Our source hints that reps of Globacom over the weekend contacted Samini’s camp for talks. A scheduled meeting between same rep (simply referred to as Richard or Rahim) and a Samini management member was supposed to come off at the Accra Mall.

Samini was not available at press time to confirm or deny the story as he was in the U.K for a concert (All White Party) over the weekend.

However, according to Samini’s Manager, Anthony Pun Danning, “We’ve had several calls from a number of persons claiming to represent various telecom networks but we have never had any secret meeting with them”.

“We are still in business with MTN and Samini has never considered moving from MTN, though it is true that our deal ends early this month”. Tony says

Samini, who Hi gathers, is currently planning two major concerts in Accra and Tamale (similar to last year’s 4-City Tour) plus series of activities in relation to the launch of his new album, CEO, scheduled for Golden Tulip Hotel in Accra later this month, vehemently denies the allegation.

“I don’t know where this is coming from. I’m still with MTN”, he told Hi Newspaper via mobile sms.

Asked whether he’s heard about the purported GHC155,000 per year offer from Glo, his Manager Tony says:

“Words do fly around every day. But I don’t want to think or even consider anything that will stain my smooth relationship with MTN. If Samini’s contract ends and MTN is not willing to re-new, that will be a different issue. In the meantime, we are still working with MTN.

Tony confirmed that Samini’s management had already started talks to continue business with MTN even before the contract expired hence “we see no reason why we should even be in a meeting with a brand we don’t see our artiste representing now”.

“Glo has signed a large number of icons but we need the Michael Essien of the pack, and Mr. Adenuga (owner of Glo) would be willing to pay anything to have you join the green family”, the said Rahim was said to have told a member of Samini camp.

When pushed to the wall to confirm or deny whether one Rahim (a.k.a Richard), a Lebanese based in Nigeria and linked to the ceo of Glo, had purportedly met with him at the Accra Mall last weekend for this discussion, he confirmed having received that call “but never met with him”.

Tony was not ready to confirm how much MTN paid Samini for the last 2 years but our source at MTN says it was below half the amount promised by this Rahim personality who seems to know a lot about what’s going on between Samini’s camp and MTN.

MTN office was not contacted for comment. Hi Newspaper will bring you follow up in the coming weeks.

Source: Hi Newspaper