In an unprecedented display of talent, Timi Julius, a 22 year old indigene of Bayelsa State emerged the winner of the star prize of a N5million record deal at the 1st edition of the Rivers Music and Arts Project (RIVMAP) whose grand finale was held at the Silverbird Cinemas, Port Harcourt on 26 September 2012. The RIVMAP is the brainchild of Prince Tonye Princewill, Leader of the Princewill Political Associates (PPA) to serve as a platform for the emancipation of our youths from poverty and hopelessness by discovering, nurturing and grooming talent in the arts to stardom.
The RIVMAP which is split into Music, Comedy and Dancing segments saw champions emerging in the various segments in a highly competitive final that gave the Judges that includes Prince Tonye Princewill, Mr. Adonijah Owiriwa of the Adonis Production, Mr. Daniel D’ Humorous and Eldee of Rhythm 93.7FM and Ejike Okoroafor of the New Dawn Productions, a herculean task in determining the eventual winners.
According to Tamunoiminabo Wokoma of TamsRecords, a label based in Marseille, France who collaborated with the Riverdrill Group owned by Prince Tonye Princewill to stage the project, “the RIVMAP started as a project under the PTP Star Center aimed at searching for raw talents and grooming them to stardom in singing, dancing and standup comedy. This edition that has consumed over N20m commenced in May 2012 with over one thousand youths who after several months of audition and screening was pruned down to a reasonable size of 28 singers, 10 comedians and 4 dancing groups which was later trimmed down to four comedians, three dancing troupes and six musicians for the finals after intensive three weeks camping and training”. He further thanked the Prince for being so kind to the youths by embarking upon such gigantic venture and urged him not to relent as the people will always be there for him in his time of need.
Prince Tonye Princewill the sponsor of the event stated that the program will be an annual event designed to take youths residing in Rivers State that may not have the opportunity to be promoted to rub shoulders with the best in the entertainment world as he intends to promote the champions in each segment to USA and Europe to have the best exposure in their respective industry with hope that they will become some of the best performing in the world.
According to the Judges, Mr. Timi Julius carted away the N5M Record Deal in Music with the Dancing group of the Thrillers winning the N2M Prize in the Dancing Group and Mr. Jacob John a Welder/Fabricator based in Port Harcourt from Akwa Ibom winning the N1M meant for the Comedy group.
The lucky winners prayed and thanked God for giving the type of Prince Tonye Princewill to the society and urged other well placed Nigerians to emulate him and come to the aid of Nigerian youths by engaging them in meaningful and productive venture and arrest the high level of unemployment and crime amongst the youths in Nigeria.
Chief Eze Chukwuemeka Eze,
Media Consultant PPA