Tag Archives: Celebrity

Meet Muwado, the eight-year-old girl making Somalia laugh,she has now more than 235,000 followers and 3.2 million likes on TikTok

The eight-year-old girl is the star of short comedy videos that have taken Somalia by storm. Viewed millions of times on online platforms such as TikTok and YouTube, Muwado Abshir’s sketches touch on a wide range of topics, from unemployment and fashion to social media obsession and even relationships – and her jokes spare no one.

“I like to make people happy. I get happy when I see people laughing,” Muwado tells Al Jazeera, before breaking into laughter herself.

“People look better when they are happy and laughing.”

It all began in December of last year, when the eldest of Muwado’s seven older siblings, Abdikassim Abshir, was making a video for his TikTok channel.

“She wouldn’t leave me alone and kept on asking me to make a video of her,” the 19-year-old recalls.

But simply shooting the video was not enough for Muwado, who insisted that her brother share it online. Abdikassim reluctantly concurred – and within days, the clip had more than a quarter of a million views.

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Abdikassim (centre) writes the script while Muwado delivers the punchlines [Ali Adan Abdi/Al Jazeera]

The funny sketch starts with Abdikassim telling Muwado not to play with his phone because she is too young. He then asks her to go to the shops to buy him ice cream.

“Be patient,” Muwado retorts. When I grow up, I will get you ice cream. I will get lost if I go out to buy you ice cream now.

Thinking that the post’s popularity was accidental, Abdikassim then posted a video featuring just himself – and did this did not go down too well with his followers.

“People would not let me post anything that Muwado was not in. They were not asking but demanding. I had no choice. It was either I post Muwado videos or don’t post anything,” he said.

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The brother-sister duo started posting videos together, with Abdikassim coming up with the script and Muwado delivering the punchlines. No topic was left untouched, with special attention reserved for social media influencers, schoolteachers and politicians.

One post, making light of federal leaders cutting ties with the central government in Mogadishu, garnered more than 1.1 million views.

Because of her age, Muwado’s videos are posted on her brother’s channel.

The account now has more than 235,000 followers and 3.2 million likes on TikTok. Muwado’s YouTube channel has garnered close to seven million views in less than a year – and that excludes the figures from people downloading and resharing her videos.

‘Very smart, very funny’

Somalia is recovering from a brutal two-decade civil war that has damaged almost every sector including the entertainment industry.

With the guns falling silent, many youths have been increasingly taking to social media, mostly TikTok and Facebook, to find entertainment, express themselves and pass their time. But no one could have predicted that an eight-year-old girl would grab the attention of millions in the conservative country.

“We have never had someone her age doing what she is doing. She makes the country laugh. I hope she continues forever,” says Nafisa Abdile Abdi, a store owner in central Mogadishu.

“Whenever I’m down or had a tough day, I go to Muwado’s channels and watch her videos. She makes me happy. For someone so young, she is very smart and very funny.”

With Muwado’s star continuing to rise, one of the country’s most popular musicians, Sharma Boy, released a song dedicated to her.

“Muwado, the happy one. She is better than the rest. She has no arrogance, always joking. No one like her on TikTok,” Sharma Boy raps in the song.

And Muwado’s online fame has also translated offline, with people inviting her to birthday parties, graduations ceremonies and even weddings for an appearance fee –  a figure her family did not want to disclose. 

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Muwado says she wants to become a doctor when she grows up [Ali Adan Abdi/Al Jazeera]

But it was not always like that. Muwado’s mother, Siraad Muuse, did her best to stop her from becoming a public figure.

“She is very young. She needs to focus on other things like school, learning the Quran and just been a child,” says Siraad, who was not happy when she found out Abdikassim had posted videos of his sister online.

She warned him against doing so, but the two siblings continued.

“Every day I will get phone calls from people telling me your daughter is on the internet. I always thought it was the first video until I realised there were dozens of other videos. It was too late to stop them. Now they tell me before they post and they tell me what the video is about,” says Siraad, who is now supporting her daughter.

And because of Muwado’s rising profile, Siraad has also become a celebrity in her own right.

“I get stopped on the streets by people and they ask how Muwado is doing. People are very nice and care about her. They call me Muwado’s mum and have stopped using my name. They even take photos with me,” Siraad said.

Meanwhile, Abdikassim has big dreams and plans for Muwado.

“I want her to make her a big star in Africa then take her to Hollywood where she can become a bigger star. God has given her a gift and I want to share that with [the] world,” he said.

But his young sister might need some convincing.

“I enjoy making people laugh but that is not what I want to do when I grow up,” she said. “My dream is to become a doctor. I think it is better to treat people than to make them laugh.”

“People will find other things to make them laugh,” she added, again bursting into laughter.

Instagram star flaunted lavish lifestyle but was actually conspiring to launder hundreds of millions of dollars, US prosecutors say

Director of Dubai CID say from di raid, dem gbab’ document of one planned fraud wey dey worth $435 million.

Dubai police say dem also seize:

  • More dan $40.9 million cash moni
  • 13 expensive cars wey worth $6.8 million moni wey dem get from mago-mago activities
  • 21 computer device
  • 47 smartphones
  • 15 memory stick
  • Five hard disk wey contain 119,580 fraud files
  • Address of 1,926,400 victims.
Nigerian internet scammer Instagram star flaunted lavish lifestyle but was actually conspiring to launder hundreds of millions of dollars, US prosecutors say

Hushpupi was arrested Instagram star flaunted lavish lifestyle but was actually conspiring to launder hundreds of millions of dollars, US prosecutors say
Hushpupi and his expensive Lamborghini in Dubai

A Nigerian man nicknamed “Ray Hushpuppi” who flaunted his Rolls Royces, fancy watches and designer clothing on Instagram faces money laundering conspiracy charges in the United States, according to the Department of Justice.

Ramon Olorunwa Abbas appeared in a federal court in Chicago on Friday. He is accused of conspiring to launder hundreds of millions of dollars through cybercrime schemes.

According to a federal affidavit, one of the alleged victims was the client of a New York-based law firm that lost nearly a million dollars in 2019.https://tpc.googlesyndication.com/safeframe/1-0-37/html/container.html?n=0

Abbas was arrested last month by law enforcement officials in the United Arab Emirates and transferred to the US this week by the FBI.

Prosecutors allege Abbas is one of the leaders of a global network that uses computer intrusions, business email compromise (BEC) schemes and money laundering capers to steal hundreds of millions of dollars.US authorities say this man is Ramon Abbas and he conspired to launder millions of dollars.US authorities say this man is Ramon Abbas and he conspired to launder millions of dollars.

A BEC scheme often involves a hacker who redirects communications of a business email account to others in an attempt to lure them into making a wire transfer.

“This case targets a key player in a large, transnational conspiracy who was living an opulent lifestyle in another country while allegedly providing safe havens for stolen money around the world. As this case demonstrates, my office will continue to hold such criminals accountable, no matter where they live,” US Attorney Nick Hanna said in a statement.

It is unclear whether Abbas has an attorney.

The Department of Justice says the Hushpuppi Instagram account, which boasts 2.4 million followers, shows Abbas inside or in front of jets, shopping luxury brands, posing in front of Rolls Royces, a Ferrari and other expensive cars.

In the bio, Hushpuppi says he is a real estate developer.

According to the Dubai Police Facebook page, Abbas and 11 other people were arrested during raids in which authorities seized nearly $41 million, 13 luxury cars worth $6.8 million and phone and computer evidence containing more than 100,000 fraud files and the addresses of nearly 2 million possible victims

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Conspirators went after English soccer team, feds say

A criminal complaint filed last month alleges that Abbas and an unnamed person conspired to launder funds from a $14.7 million heist of a foreign financial institution in 2019.

Abbas also is accused of conspiring to be part of an attempt to steal $124 million from an English Premier League soccer club. The complaint does not say which team was targeted or if the attempt was successful.The man known as Hushpuppi told his 2.4 million Instagram followers that he is in real estate.The man known as Hushpuppi told his 2.4 million Instagram followers that he is in real estate.

Authorities said he was part of a BEC scheme that defrauded a client of a New York-based law firm out of about $922,857 in October 2019.https://tpc.googlesyndication.com/safeframe/1-0-37/html/container.html?n=0

The FBI says in the criminal complaint that Abbas and others tricked a paralegal at the law firm into wiring the money meant for a real estate refinance into an account that Abbas and his co-conspirators were using.

Abbas, 37, is being held at the Metropolitan Correctional Center, Chicago, the Federal Bureau of Prisons website says. He will be transferred to Los Angeles in the coming weeks, according the Justice Department.

If convicted of money laundering, he would face a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison.

Di Director of Dubai CID say from di raid, dem gbab document of one planned fraud wey dey worth $435 million.

Dubai police say dem also seize:

  • More dan $40.9 million cash moni
  • 13 expensive cars wey worth $6.8 million moni wey dem get from mago-mago activities
  • 21 computer device
  • 47 smartphones
  • 15 memory stick
  • Five hard disk wey contain 119,580 fraud files
  • Address of 1,926,400 victims.