by Ayokunle Odekunle, with support from Mark Amaza and (yes) Hauwa Gambo
When Dino is not embroiled in controversies over ‘Child paternity’ with his alleged ‘baby mama’, he is busy defending himself over wife battering allegations.
There is no gainsaying the fact that Nigeria’s ‘Twittershpere’ is one of the most interesting in the World. There, you find the very best of people from all facets of life struggling to be heard. You can never have a dull moment on twitter as there is almost always something to keep you glued to your handset or computer; Twitting.
Who are those people who make Nigeria’s this zone thick?
This list, which is in no particular order, points to 100 of the most influential Nigerians ranging from Entertainment and Arts, Sports, Technology, the Political Analysts and the ubiquitous band of ‘Twitter Activists’ – in 2013.
POLITICS & NATIONAL ISSUES
‘Mwalimu’ as he is popular called has to be the ‘deepest’ Nigerian political analyst on Twitter. His ability to give very expert opinions on politics and contemporary issues makes him one of the most sought after tweeps. He seems to know something about everything.
Activist per excellence. Controversial and viewed by many as an ‘agent provocateur’.
Calm, brilliant writer, eloquent political analyst
One of the premium ‘Overlords’ on twitter. Has an opinion on everything – and it’s usually solid
Okay. We know Twitter is a place for ‘Men of Yesterday’ to go and show the world that they are born again and so should be taken as saints. But Oby Ezekwesili is different. Her handle is a thorn in the flesh of the Federal Government. She engages the government in constructive criticism and has a large and cult followership to show for her influence on twitter.
His ability to churn out controversy week in, week out explains his influence of Twitter.
A former Minister of the FCT under the Olusegun Obasanjo regime, El-rufai has been one of the leaders of the opposition and he has chosen twitter as his ‘platform’. He is the toast of every APC honcho on twitter and the thorn in the flesh of the anti-APC people.
Respected International author. Seldom comments on national issues but when he does, people listen.
Tweets politics and is never tired of professing his love for his beloved Arsenal football club. Verified on twitter.
The World renowned and respected economist and Super Minister is not an active tweep but when she tweets, she gets everybody’s attention.
Ebube has to be the biggest lover of President Jonathan on Twitter. Infact, many people are of the opinion that he performs better than Reuben Abati and Reno Omokri in preaching the ‘GEJ Gospel’. Once he starts twitting about why President Jonathan is the best President ever, the whole Twitter just stands still.
DoubleEph is an active commentator on Twitter where he holds his teeming followers spellbound with his indepth analysis of the nitty-gritty of politics and economic issues.
While there are those who see Kayode Ogundamisi as an alarmist who might hold sensation over fact, others see him as a voice for the ‘hoarse voiced’ – who must be listened to. His influence on Twitter cannot be overstated.
With a followers count of over 50,000, Tolu Ogunlesi ranks as one of the most influential political analysts vis-à-vis ‘twitter overlords’.
Jude is a very brilliant writer and is someone who is versed in politics analytics. He is influential on twitter because he is one of the very few people who remain balanced and unbiased in their political views.
When Dino is not embroiled in controversies over ‘Child paternity’ with his alleged Baby Mama, he is busy defending himself over wife battering allegations. In his spare time, he reminds us that he is born again democrat and a messiah. Some people take him seriously and he exerts influence over them.
Whenever he manages to come out of ‘hiding’ tweeting to defend his boss, the twitter renegade will go after him baying for blood. One of the best writers of this generation, Mr. Abati’s influence on Twitter; both over the PDP and APC honchos, and also aspiring writers cannot be over-emphasized.
Mr. Ohimai is one of the leaders of the PDP Youth circuit and also the Special Assistant to the Minister for Sports. At a pretty young age, he ran the Presidential campaign for Dele Momodu. He is respected by many on Twitter.
The strongman of Kwara politics is an active tweep who manages to engage his followers in in-depth conversation ranging from politics or contemporary issues
When he is not discussing politics with the general twitter populace, he is ranting about poor power supply to his ‘Bar’. Muyiwa runs Bar Enclave which is the meeting point for the ‘twitter people’. His Bar is where ‘Twitter friendships’ have turned into ‘Real friendships’.
Emeka is a controversial albeit influential tweep. A staunch and unrepentant PDP lover, he is always defending the PDP and the President. He is almost always involved in banters with the APC supporters. And believe me, these banters are cool for the neutrals.
Looked up to mainly by people who angrily see what needs to be changed in Nigeria and the Federal Government. He is good at stoking the embers of hatred for the president and the PDP.
This economist per excellence is one of the most respected and most influential Nigerians on Twitter. He rarely tweets politics but when he does, everyone stands in awe of his dexterity and brilliance.
Mercy is the brain behind NewswireNgr. She has a larger followership who yearn to hear her views on politics and general issues.
Olusegun Dada is an active partaker in the various political discourses on Twitter. He is known to have a very strong bias for the APC. The ‘Progressives’ on Twitter love him.
He is a market analysis and FDI specialist. He is a Business Commentator with the BBC. Once he starts analyzing on Twitter, people run to dust their economic textbooks.
Excellent writer, excellent political analyst. Everything about him oozes of excellence. Very influential on Twitter
President Jonathan’s Special Assistant on New Media. He always pays for his boss’ blunders as the ‘children of anger’ on Twitter never hesitate to call him out. He replies by quoting bible passages and African proverbs.
Collins Uma is a columnist with a number of reputable online media, YNaija.com inclusive. His political analyses are bulls eye and his views are well respected on Twitter as fair.
Pa Ikhide is a Nigerian who tweets from the diaspora. He writes on everything under the sun and his articles are critically acclaimed. He is highly regarded on Twitter.
Michael Collins needs little or no introduction. Apart from the fact that he is Africa’s best producer, he is arguably one of the most influential personalities on Twitter. When he is not sharing airtime among his followers, he is playing pranks. Very likeable.
Nigeria’s number one ‘gossip’ merchant’s influence cannot be over-emphasized.
There is no gainsaying the fact that Wizkid Ayo Balogun is one of the hottest musicians on the Nigerian music scene. His cute looks makes him a major attraction to the ladies. And how they love ‘Starboy’ on Twitter!
Omo Baba Olowo, with over 600,000 followers remains a huge influence on Twitter. He is adored by his followers who time without number beg him for retweets and shout outs.
This has been a particularly good year for Olamide. He has practically taken over the music industry…his unprecedented rise has also seen his influence on social media, most especially Twitter grow in leaps and bounds.
He is so popular and influential that there are so many parody accounts on twitter bearing his name. people look forward to his tweets as he makes them laugh away their sorrows.
The undisputed Nigeria’s King of comedy is a fans’ favourite on twitter.
Peter, who is one half of the high-flying duo, Psquare exchanges pleasantries with fans who are all over Africa on twitter.
He prides himself as the ‘rude boy’ of the musical group ‘Psquare’. He is also the more jovial of the two. His followers love him because he exchanges friendly banters with them.
The Helmsman of E.M.E has a lot of female fans on twitter and he shows them love by managing to remove his cap once a while *winks
Tosin Adeda is a popular blogger and he knows his opinions when it comes to music. He almost always stirs the hornet’s nest with his controversial opinions.
Seun Kuti is one of the best afro-beat musicians in Africa at the moment and his hugely followed on Twitter. He also does some kind of ‘activism’ on twitter
Mr. Ovie runs arguably the biggest and most popular music blog in Nigeria: NotJustok.com. That is his claim to fame. And upcoming artistes mob him on twitter to seek his favour.
Eldee might not have dished out a monster hit in recent times but that nonetheless, his popularity on twitter has refused to wane. He has almost 400,000 followers who practically worship him.
No one seems to know how Ejan la does it. No hit song in almost 2 years, yet, his popularity is on the increase. He rarely tweets but when he does, the ladies swoon and go into a frenzy. He’s the boss!
Arguably the best and most popular actress out of Africa, Genevieve Nnaji (MFR) also rules on Twitter. With a verified account and 507,864 followers, she remains one of the most influential Nigerian entertainers on Twitter.
‘Mr Incredible’ has an incredible followership on Twitter. Many still regard him as Nigeria’s best rapper…a fact they are never tired of haranguing people with on twitter
Sultry musician who manages to dance like Beyonce is another immensely popular and influential Nigerian on Twitter. Imagine, because she tried hard to dance like Beyonce, many of her female followers also try to dance like Beyonce. Now that’s influence!
Like a boss. 2baba does not tweet much. Yet he commands so much respect on Twitter… from his fellow musicians to non-musicians
Not everyone agrees that he can rap. Yet the ladies love his style of ‘rap’. He is followed by almost 500,000 (Population of some cities in Ghana). Lol
After punishing us by releasing any of her ill-fated tracks, ‘POKO’ would trend endlessly for days on Twitter. And guess what, her follower count would increase and she can also claim to be ‘influential’.
With 326,097 followers, we can at least say she is also influential. She sometimes ‘manages’ to find her voice to ‘rant’ about the state of the nation of Twitter and some people love her for that. She ‘try’.
With his sex appeal, it is no wonder he is a fan’s favourite on twitter. The ladies love him.
Audu Maikori is the ‘Oga at the top’ in Chocolate City music group. He speaks with authority on Twitter and people listen.
You are shocked? Well, at the thick of his problems with his ex-wife, 9ice deleted his Twitter account which had almost 600,000 followers (One of the highest back then). Now, that he has a new account, he has notched up over 100,000 followers already and his teeming fans waste no time in asking their idol for shout-outs. Which he sometimes obliges them wit
Seun is the brain behind Nigeria’s number one forum: Nairaland which has over 1 Million Members. That explains his influence on the whole of social media.
Jason is the man behind iROKOtv and he is one of the most influential ‘techies’ on Twitter.
Bankole is one of the leading voices on twitter when we talk technology. He is THE brain behind www.Techcabal.com
Mark Essien is a software developer based in Lagos and also runs Hotels.ng which is the biggest hotel booking portal in Nigeria. He holds his own when people talk ‘software engineering’.
He describes himself as a ‘Technopreneur’ and business architect. He runs www.buynownow.com which is the Nigerian equivalent for Ebay
This young man is the co-founder of Next2.us which is a company that provides advanced communication services to people and organization in emerging markets. Emeka is a leading semantic Mobile Application developer.
Seyi is quite vocal on Twitter and he holds no hostages when he gives his opinion. He is ‘on the Board’ of Techcabal.com
Sim Shagaya is one of the albeit quiet Tech gurus on Twitter. A few of the ‘majority’ however take notice of him whenever he tweets.
Bosun is another very influential techie who shuttles between Leicester and Lagos. He is the brain behind Truppr.com
Eghosa is the founder of EchoVC Partners which is into delivering IT sevices, ranging from SmartData to Ambient Awareness. Like a typical gold fish, he has no hiding place on Twitter as the ‘wannabes’ look up to him a lot. He is that influential.
His name is Nubi Kay and he is Nigerian based in Dublin, Ireland from where he holds the Nigerian Twitter community spellbound with his insightful article . He is an Internet entrepreneur.
Raphael Kofi Afaedor is the Co-Founder of Jumia. He rarely tweets but he deserves to be on this list as he is one the Tech Big Boys who are on Twitter.
Ahmed is the is the CTO and Founder of GigaLayer, a domain and web hosting company delivering ‘fire-blazing’ customer service on ‘rock-solid’ web servers in Nigeria.
Gbenga Sesan is one of the foremost IT people in Africa and arguably the most recognized Nigerian when it comes to ICT. He is also a fierce critic of the Nigerian government.
He has a teeming amount of followers who love him because he sells and delivers everything ‘Techy’. Name it! Iyanya once ‘mentioned’ him out to deliver a PS3 to him. He is that popular.
Formerly a co-founder of OnePage, his life’s goal is to inspire a new cadre of Nigerian Internet Entrepreneurs through education and mentoring.
Tayo is the Founder and CEO of Mypaga which has over 1 Million Users.
He is a blogger who describes himself as one who loves ‘African Technology’.
Techloy is one of the leading Tech News sites in Africa. It breaks Tech news as ‘e dey hot’.
He is a Geek as well as a poet. Effiong is the co-founder of ‘Techie District’.
Leke Alder is a ‘Brand Strategist’ and what have you. On Twitter however, he is more or less a Motivational tweep. Once he starts his #LetterToJill series on Saturdays, Twitter comes to a standstill. Very influential individual.
Fela is a a motivational ‘tweep’. And has a sizable amount of followers to boot.
Elnathan John is a lawyer, writer, blogger and what have you. He was a nominee at the Caine Prize for literature. He holds his followers spell bound with his witty tweets.
His book ‘Sorry Tales’ which was released recently has shot up to the Twitter ‘Hall of Fame’ (Naija Chapter) as everybody or almost everybody on Twitter wants to know who Ayo Sogunro is.
He does not particularly have much followers but he is respected on Twitter. In fact, one can decipher his influence from the caliber of people following him. He is the author of ‘Soldiers of fortune’.
Chika is the author of two books that have earned her praise from critics all around the world.
Chibundu is the author of ‘The Spider King’s daughter’. She also blogs. She has a wide readership.
Demola is the brain behind www.demolarewajudaily.com. He is without doubt one of the most respected writers on Twitter. He writes as well as he tweets.
There is no overstating the fact that Collins who is the most popular Sports Journalists from Africa, is also the most influential figure when it comes to Sports on Twitter. He tweets with authority.
The former Super Eagles Captain is another influential tweep when it comes to sports. His analytical skills and use of English earns him enormous respect from all and sundry.
When he is not ranting about being left out of the National team by Stephen Keshi, he is in one trouble or the other in England. All these traits have earned him some kind of notoriety of twitter…where he enjoys a cult followership
He is a popular sport analyst on TV. He also makes his view known on twitter where he is listened and respected.
He tweets as much politics as he does sports. But he is informed when the matches come alive, and – because who doesn’t prefer sports to politics – we have him on this special list.
Former Super Eagles and Orlando Pirates Goalkeeper. Now an analyst with SuperSports. Has a respectable following on Twitter.
Nigeria’s leading football blogger. 95.1 Today FM Sports chief.
He is the CEO of August 22 media and an award winning Broadcaster. He is an C Milan fan.
He is Chemical-Engineer at large who seems to have fallen in love with ‘Football Analyses’. He does it very well though and has a respectable followership on Twitter
Charles Anazodo is one of the most eloquent football sport analysts in Nigeria.
LIFE & LIVING
If follower-count is anything to go by, Pastor Chris is undoubtedly the most popular and most influential Nigerian on twitter. You don’t believe? His follower count which is above a million tells is there as a pointer
She is the most popular TV Talkshow host out of Nigeria at the moment. Hugely reverred on Twitter as well.
Almost everyone who stays in Lagos follow Gidi Traffic. Reason? You have to consult with him before going on. Or else, you go enter hold-up o!
Very funny tweep who has some out of this world, sarcastic tweets.
His job is to catch ‘Tweet-thieves’ and he does this very well too.
This also is one of the funniest Twitter accounts in Nigeria. The brain behind it also runs a blog. On Twitter, he has over 40,000 followers. Influential
This guy would crack you up. In his Bio, he describes himself as a “Fake Blogger, Jobless Lad”. Will, he is jobless indeed. He is more like the grammar police of Twitter. He has over 50,000 followers.
This is to more influential conversations – and the inevitable drama – in the coming year. Well done @jack!
*This post has been updated.