Years back Ruggedman was accused by fellow artiste 9ice of having an affair with his then wife, Toni Payne, which happened to be one of the biggest Nigerian celebrity scandal of all time in the Nigerian Music Industry.
Few years later CEO RuggedRecords and veteran rapper Ruggedman revealed his own part of the story and why he leaked a phone call between him and 9ice to the internet. He told Punch Newspapers
“As for 9ice, I have not seen him in a long time but all I wanted to do was to clear my name from the whole issue that happened. To me, it was a bad thing. In Nigeria, it is bad to be branded as a home breaker and that was why I fought tooth and nail to clear my name. I never had any issue with 9ice and he never told me directly that he had any issue with me. Even in his song, Once Beaten, Twice Shy, he never mentioned my name; neither did he mention Toni Payne”
“I did not reply the song but I talked to him because it was his song that was causing the whole problem. I called him like a friend was supposed to do and told him that his song was causing some issues that I did not like. I asked if he was talking about me and he said no and I told him to tell his publicist to clear my name but he refused and I wondered why. I watch too many American movies, so I recorded the phone conversation because I felt that for you to have kept quiet for over six months and the whole story started from your song, then his silence meant a lot of things. I told them that I would give him a week to clear my name and when he did not do anything, I put out the conversation.
“When I called him at first, he said he was too busy to do anything but when I posted the conversation, he suddenly had time to talk and even had time to record a song to ‘diss’ me. Unfortunately ‘dissing’ me is like going into the bush with a stick to fight a hunter. I was sorting the whole thing out my way but when he put it into music, I had to respond because he mentioned my name in the song. I did not reply by insulting him, instead I reminded him of how he started, where he came from and where he is in life right now. I reminded him of what I did for him and for him to go against me was not right and I ended it with ‘God bless you.’
“What I learnt from the whole scenario is the need to be very careful and expect anything from anybody. Although that is how I have been living my life, I did not expect it from somebody that was close to me. But now, I expect it from everybody including my mother. Now I am careful about everybody and everything,”