Ayeni Adekunle, Olamide Adedeji, Matse Uwatse & Others! See our list of the Top 10 most powerful young Nigerians in the media!

by Hauwa Gambo

Introducing The Power List

We present the most influential young Nigerians under 35 in Business,Fashion, Media, Entertainment, Technology and Politics! (You don’t want to miss this). We’re not talking influence or popularity; we’re talking to power to make things happen beyond their immediate space..

New Media is the rave these days, but anyone who actually wants to make things happen knows you still need to focus on television, radio, newspapers and magazines – ‘cause they still have a huge chunk of the power to take your message out.

Today, as part of our Annual YNaija Power List, we look at the young Nigerians under 35 who run the world when it comes to the traditional media in Nigeria. As always, we’re not talking about just popularity; we mean the power to make things happen.

For us, these are the Top 10 players.

Olamide Adedeji

Well, he recently got on the screen, but for more than half a decade now, Olamide has been the centre of the universe at Soundcity and its parent company, Consolidated Media Associates. Not only has he been group channel producer but he also has his hands on Soundcity’s special projects including its music video awards. And now, Adedeji is the man to talk to for ONTV which is set to give Silverbird a run for its money. That is world domination right there.

Ayeni Adekunle

He had spent quite a bit of time building a record as an entertainment journalist, and people began to pay attention from Encomium to the Punch. By the time Ayeni broke out on his own fully, he was just ready to go! With his position as published of the NET newspapers and its popular website as well as being chief executive of the Blackhouse Media Group which clients include MTV Base and Darey Art-Alade, Ayeni The Great as he is called is laying the foundations for an empire. 

Samuel Olatunji

He is what Nigerian journalists like to call “diminutive”, but there’s nothing small about the power of his vision. He has been with Tempo and he has been with the Daily Independent, before settling with the Sun. But Olatunji’s Big Sam Media controls the images of some of our most powerful celebrities – including Mercy Johnson, Omotola Jalade-Ekeinde and Funke Akindele. He has moved from the realms of reporting to the halls of business, and he is doing it big.

Mfonobong Nsehe

Just before Forbes Africa set up office in Nigeria, they did something very smart; they whet our appetites with a blog that focused on African business and power, especially in Nigeria. The man for the job was Nsehe. His pieces have the uncanny ability to drive the conversation – the one on powerful pastors got everyone from TB Joshua to Sam Adeyemi scrambling with official responses, and the one on powerful women got everyone giddy. And we forget – it’s only a blog! This man understands power.

Matse Uwatse

How una see am? She reigned supreme as the lead voice in the innovative Wazobia FM, and for many the impact she left there will last her a lifetime. Then the multiple awards winning broadcaster made a crucial pivot, joining the team that launched Nigeria Info – a 24 hour news and issue station. She is not just a presenter, but she is also working behind the scenes. Matse’s approval has turned songs into hits, and at Nigeria Info her voice continues to lead the conversation.

Deji Badmus

As head of the reportorial desk at Channels Television, Badmus has a lot of power in his hands – at least for as long as the station continues to be the leader for news across the nation. He cements this ability to control the conversation perched atop his seat as presenter of Politics Today. This power was on display during the #OccupyNigeria protests as well as the 2011 elections. Quietly but surely, Badmus has become a face and voice we cannot ignore.

Stephanie Busari

The CNN profile of Goodluck Jonathan that talked to his friends and colleagues? Check. The article on the Senate’s gay bill that got the nation talking? Check. The list of Nigeria’s technology authorities to follow on Twitter? Check. On and on, most of the definitive stories about Nigeria and Nigerians on CNN.com have behind them this young woman operating from her office in the United Kingdom. It’s an impressive power base – and Busari uses it so well.

Toyosi Ogunseye

A lot of people weren’t paying attention – that was until this young woman clinched the CNN/Multichoice Journalist of the Year. But many Nigerian institutions around the country already knew to fear. Ogunseye’s power comes straight from her pen – her uncanny ability to spotlight issues and a successful run as an investigative reporter. You don’t see her coming – and that’s the reason why her stories in the Punch continue to take centre stage.

Funke Osae-Brown

In an industry famously tough on women, it is truly remarkable how swiftly Osae-Brown (nee Adetutu) rose through the ranks to emerge as the first female editor on the stables of BusinessDay. In a country where the number of pages under your control can mean everyone and their fathers crouching at your doorsteps, her Friday Life & Style have certainly carved her a niche, along with her half-page column and her constant travels. Throw in the awards, and Osae-Brown is the woman to beat.

IK Osakioduwa

There’s no avoiding him – not as long as Big Brother Africa is still the continent’s biggest television production. The fact that IK has been presenter of this show for three years running is no child’s play. He has his A-game on. Added to that, he continues to rule the airwaves as On-Air Personality on Silverbird’s Rhythm 93.7, where he has also been head of programmes. As far as media power goes, IK has it going on. Big time.

Editor’s Note: Any one associated with the core editorial team of Y! or YNaija has been removed from any of the lists.

One comment

  1. Nice list. They all deserve to be on it.

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