The golden moment finally came for African Pop king 2face Idibia and Annie Macaulay on March 8, 2013 when the first phase of their well-publicized grand wedding kicked off in the small town of Eket Community, Akwa Ibom.
The couple knew the highly anticipated wedding was going to suck millions and seemed to be ready to live it up right from the start
Let’s start with the wedding invitation cards – the IVs were specially designed and printed in gold coloured sleeve. Event planners say the production would averagely cost N1m.
Then there was the cost of transportation. Close to a hundred people made their way to Eket Community from different parts of the country (although most came from Lagos and Abuja). After wedding organizers failed to secure a deal with an airline company to fly in guests, everyone was billed standard rates – that price hangs around N4m (covering cost of air and land travels. The couple did not foot the entire bill for this as most guests financed their own trips)
Hotel accommodation and feeding at the Villa Marina and other guest houses also gulped a lot of money. Multiple hotels were used to accommodate the bride’s and groom’s friends for several nights (at least four days for close family and friends, and one night for those who came in the night before). We’ve been told about N8m went into this.
The Pre-nuptials party (or 2face’s Bachelor’s Eve party) was held at the De Javu night club on the night before the wedding. All sorts of drinks were brought out for the party – ranging from non-alcoholic, alcoholic spirits, wine and more. Those who attended say the gig which was sponsored by the state governor Godswill Akpabio could not have cost anything less than N2m. And that, we’re told, is a conservative estimate.
Getting to the wedding proper…
The wedding ceremony was organized by two different event planners – I-ma Planners headed by Imabong Ukpong and Imaginationz Events. Both companies made sure they left no stone unturned in delivering a successful traditional event beffiting of the couple’s superstar status.
The couple’s wedding attire was another highlight of the day – 2face’s customized cap, George wrapper, long sleeve top and beads, a stylist says would fall between N300k and N400k. And that also goes for the best man’s attire plus the all the friends of the groom. Annie’s attire including jewellery ‘would cost nearly two times as much as her groom’s one source told us. Other family members, friends and guests also donned purpose-made traditional attires. Those familiar with Eket fashion tell us the glamorous attires must have cost up to N2m
Students of the Apostolic High School, where the wedding was held wouldn’t have recognized the school on March 8 as it had been totally transformed into something else – breaths were taken away with the red-themed colourful designs, decorated with bamboo and cane chairs. An event planner tells us all that would cost close to N10m to put together, including the cost for music and other side attractions (And were there many!)
Food and refreshment at the ceremony: Trust, there was a lot to eat, drink and make merry with, we are talking three course meals, ‘small chops’, all sort of drinks ranging from soda to spirits. The groom had to also provide ‘special money’ for the bride’s family to cook 20 different delicacies. Hennessy Nigeria also flew in staff and at least one bar. It’s okay to put all these at N6m?
The bride price: Depending on the agreement reached by the families, it would vary from N50k – N500k – this, according to Eket indigenes who spoke with NET over the weekend.
Ceremonial gifts: This ranges from traditional attires for the parents, eldest son and daughter, two goats, tubers of yam, alcohol, rolls of cigarette, more crates of beer, bag of salt and monetary gifts to different youths groups and women in the community. Total cost – N3m
The Godswill Akpabio connection: The Akwa Ibom State’s Governor presented the couple with wedding gifts – two Toyota Prado Jeeps (N14.5m each). There was also multiple cash gifts to the couple and their friends, following a lavish dinner at the governor’s residence. We reliably gathered the total cash expenditure from the governor is over N50m.
The Governor has also promised to sponsor a 20 man delegation to represent the state at the March 22/23 Dubai white wedding, cost for flight tickets, feeding and accommodation could be up to N10m or more.
As you can see, the Idibias have tremendous goodwill and the bulk of the money and support came from friends and family, even though they also went all out to make their day successful.
And as we’ve been assured by insiders who know, the upcoming Dubai white wedding will gulp even more. To hold aboard a Yacht which has already been booked, we’re told the couple plan to treat guests (many of who will fly in from Lagos) to the most sophisticated and classy music industry wedding ever on March 22 and 23…Who’s doing what? Find out next week….
Traditional Marriage Items
1. Bride price varies between N50,000 to N500,000 depending on the agreement reached by the families.
2. Traditional attires for the parents (including singlets, underwears, shoes, headties, caps, staffs, etc).
3. Buy the same for eldest sister and eldest brother of the bride.
4. Attires for grandparents
5. One goat for the family.
6. If the girl is pregnant or has already given birth, the family will require what is called an ‘insult goat’.(Annie already has a baby for 2face and some speculate she may be pregnant with her second)
7. The mother will also be presented a goat, tubers of yam.
8. The father will require an agreed quantity of alcohol (gins, beers, palm wine, etc).
9. Youths in the village-N5,000, rolls of cigarettes, crates of beer, gins, palm wine.
10. Women in the village- N5,000, bag of salt, tubers of yam.
11. Young girls in the village- N5,000, crates of drinks.
12. Special money for food (Udia Ibene) – used for the cooking of various assorted local delicacies for the guests.
13. Money for traditional entertainment
Story Credits : Osagie Alonge