Nwaifo Peter, one of the deceased’s children, broke the sad news in a Facebook post on Saturday. “Daddy why did you leave us now? Prof sir Victor UWAIFO has gone to rest. Black Saturday for me now. One week now after collaborating with me,” he wrote.
Pretty Okafor, president of the Performing Musicians Association of Nigeria (PMAN), also confirmed the news to TheCable Lifestyle.
The music maestro breathed his last on Saturday after reportedly battling a yet-to-be-identified illness.
Nwaifo started his music career shortly after completing his secondary education and had brief stints with several legendary singers such as Stephen Osadebe, Fred Coker, and Ogbueshi Arinze.
He started pulling the strings in the music landscape thereafter and in 1965, he formed Melody Maestros, his band.
With the establishment of the band, Nwaifo came through with ‘Joromi’, a hit strong, which was widely received across Nigeria and several parts of West Africa.
He gained international prominence in 1996 when he snagged the first Golden record award in Africa for ‘Joromi’.
The late singer also inspired the Akwete rhythm sound between 1965 and 1968 as well as a new beat called Shadow in 1969.
Until his demise, Nwaifo was also a writer, sculptor, and instrumentalist.
The deceased graduated from the University of Benin (UNIBEN) where he bagged his bachelor’s and masters degrees as well as a doctor of philosophy (Ph.D.) respectively in agricultural sculpture.
He also trained several others as a lecturer at the department of fine and applied art in UNIBEN.
Nwaifo won numerous awards and recognition including the National Merit Honours of Member of the Order of the Niger (MON) in 1983.
The musician also has a total of 12 golden records — which have enjoyed positive reviews — to his name during his illustrious career as a singer.
In 2019, the highlife singer had appealed to the Nigerian government and corporate bodies to take over his private music museum to save it from total rot.