Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sports Olivia “Babsy” Grange last Thursday (April 27) celebrated her 77th birthday with well wishes from scores of entertainment players.
One of the most sentimental greetings came from her “nephew” Valiant who gave her a video call to express gratitude for her support to him and other entertainers.
“As a young artist, mi really appreciate how yuh support every young artist, an’ mi really just waan fi tell yuh thanks fi how yuh support every young artist…yuh always have some encouraging words fi tell mi. A nuff time mi have some other tings pon wi mind an’ yuh always a tell wi fi keep focus an’ mi love dat,” he said during the call.
“Mi couldn’t mek yuh birthday pass or mi tell yuh belated birthday or anything like dat because a yuh birthday an’ mi really love yuh an’ it’s coming from the whole team. Continue doing a great job an’ jus’ more blessings an’ younger an’ younger an’ younger…” added Valiant, who hailed Grange as his “aunty” in his released song Rasta.
Grange, who thanked him and blew a kiss, later shared the moment on her social media pages. “Thank you for the birthday greetings #Valiant. My nephew video call me 🤗😁,” she wrote in the caption.
Other wishes came from former Miss World Toni-Ann Singh who, of course, sang her happy birthday. That clip was posted to Minister Grange’s Instagram page.
Singh also left a comment saying, “Love you Aunty Babsy!!! Happy Birthday 🎂 ❤️✨”
Wayne Marshall and his wife Tami also had their hand in the festivities by paying her a surprise visit with a potted white orchid plant as a gift.
Veteran singer Leroy Sibbles, as well as Beenie Man were at the soiree. Their respective presence both had sentimental value to the Minister.
“Thank you Leroy Sibbles for the surprise and the gift on my special day. Did you know I once managed @leroysibbles?” she quizzed as she posted highlights of Sibbles giving her his gift.
“@kingbeenieman surprised me on my special day. Thank you beenie!”
Back in March, Grange was invested as a Dame Grand Cross of the Imperial Order of the Star of Honour of Ethiopia, one of the African country’s highest honors. The Minister, who also holds the title of the Order of Jamaica, is now entitled to be referred to as “Her Excellency Olivia Grange.”
She has had quite the journey throughout her career, which included acting as a former manager for Shabba Ranks, Patra, Bounty Killer, and Mad Cobra.
Grange, who has been in her Ministry since 2016, is also a founding member of the Jamaica Association of Composers, Authors and Publishers (JACAP).