Access Bank Under Fire For Lavishing $2m On Mariah Carey's Visit
Mariah Carey has come under fire after she was allegedly paid $1 million to perform for Angolan President Josè Eduardo Dos Santos a day after she performed at a Lagos gig for a Nigerian bank which recently laid off 200 workers.
The ‘All I Want for Christmas is You‘ singer gave a two-hour concert for authoritarian Angolan President Josè Eduardo Dos Santos on Sunday December 15, 2013, in return for the huge amount, angering human rights groups. She had earlier performed in Lagos, Nigeria, for Access Bank which also allegedly coughed out $1m for her appearance. Her Lagos visit sparked criticisms because the bank had only recently disengaged 200 workers.
Human Rights Foundation president Thor Halvorssen said: ‘It is the sad spectacle of an international artist purchased by a ruthless police state to entertain and whitewash the father-daughter kleptocracy that has amassed billions in ill-gotten wealth while the majority of Angola lives on less than $2 a day.’
Mariah’s Angola show was sponsored by Unitel, a mobile-phone company owned by Dos Santos’s daughter, who is also head of the Angolan Red Cross, which reportedly received $65,000 in benefit funds from the concert.
Carey’s Lagos appearance was at the ‘Access Bank End of the Year Bash‘, on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at the prestigious and luxurious Intercontinental Hotel, Victoria Island. The night was also dedicated the bank’s outgoing Managing Director Aigboje Aig-Imoukhuede.
Sources say Aig-Imoukhuede, a big fan of Mariah Carey was the one who wanted the US star to perform at the gig at all cost. Carey was paid and flown into the country along with her live band. A day after her trip to the country, she was accused by a US website of ‘performing for money men in Nigeria’.
Her visit and performance here upset more than a few, especially after it emerged the bank which has disengaged thousands of workers since 2012, had paid her generously. Since February 2013, Access Bank has been in court with about 1,500 former employees of the bank who instituted a case against the bank which they claim ‘illegally withheld, manipulated and mismanaged’ their gratuities and severance packages.
The party was described by those who attended as very extravagant and lavish as food and almost every kind of drinks were in abundance.