Was Barry Jhay A Victim Of Circumstances?
BY EMMANUEL DARALOYE
Barry Jhay, a scion of Alhaji Ayinde Barrister, late Nigerian music legend, was arrested recently in Ghana over the death of his label boss, Babatunde Oyerinde Abiodun better known as Kashy.
The music star was alleged to have been in Ghana to record songs and also for a business talk with his late label boss.
Few days before the death of Kashy, he gifted Barry Jhay a Hublot wristwatch worth 9 million naira which the ‘Aiye’ crooner shared in a video on his Instagram page.
In the footage, Barry Jhay could be heard saying “that’s how I joined the gang”, with Kashy commending him and added “I love bro.”
Barry Jhay and Kashy relationship began after the artist ill-fated deal with Kizz Daniel’s Flyboy inc in 2017 as revealed during an interview with Dotun of Cool FM in 2019. Ever since then, Kashy has been the financial backbone of his music career starting with his top charting 2018 hit “Aiye”.
A peruse through Barry Jhay and Kashy’s Instagram posts, one would observe the camaraderie between both of them.
Kashy might not be a social media freak, but he always shows Barry Jhay love on his handles. The last of such was on February 13, 2021, which was the artiste’s birthday.
The record label boss had posted Jhay’s image with a terse post which read “happy birthday king @therealbarryjhay. More life, more hits on hits champ.”
Last week, the artiste struck a pose with his Bentley on his Instagram page which showed that he has been living large courtesy of Kashy.
Hours before Kashy’s death, Barry Jhay posted a short video where he was bleeding from the mouth, saying
“See the way this guy beat me. I no do anything; I dey record. Na him this guy beat me like this.” He thereafter called the unnamed person “Jew.”
“Jew” is a word used by fraternity members for one who is not a member. In another context, calling someone a jew might be termed a baby, coward among others.
Nigerian artistes are bold with their membership of fraternities. They flaunt it in music videos and pictures. This has given credence to the narrative that Kashy might have been a victim of an attack from a cult group in Ghana.
In the Nigerian music industry, artistes and labels are always mired in controversy over finances, and most times, the relationship between artistes and labels gets severed in the process. A source had alleged that Barry Jhay and Kashy fought over some business transactions.
The narrative of Kashy jumping from the 5th floor of a service apartment in Beefront lodge might have been quashed by his friends and family.
It would be recalled that in June 2020, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) arrested Kashy over alleged internet fraud. Sources close to him alleged that he suffered from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) after his ordeal with the anti-graft agency which forced him into using drugs. In a country where mental health issues are shrouded in secrecy, the substance abuse narrative might have some element of truth.
The questions on the lips of the public are, was Barry Jhay responsible for the death of his label boss? Did he organise a cult group to deal with Kashy? Did depression lead to Kashy committing suicide?
These and many more are questions the Ghanaian police hopes to unravel in the course of the ongoing investigation into the matter.
Emmanuel Daraloye is a music journalist and pop culture curator.