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How Nigerian Stars Have Turned Celebrity Beggers- By Hamid Kowode





Entertainers are meant to be revered and celebrated, but when the theory is the other way round and it is not a case of Coporate Social Responsibility (CSR), then something is wrong.

A very dirty trend has taken over the entertainment industry, especially the movie industry and it is the way and manner at which actors and actresses grovel at top event organizers begging to help hype their events with their presence, while they are paid peanuts as honorarium. The development besides being disheartening is now carried out without any shame whatsoever.

If we decide to take a look at the situation from the aspect of comedians cum masters of ceremony (MC) it is the same end result, as they have turned praise singers who storm events, beg the organizers to make them co-anchors and eventually settle down to the job of telling notable dignitaries not to forget to send their transport fares to them.

Broadcasters like Ifankaleluyah and Ambrose Somide can confirm this as a fact. If you think this is bad then perhaps the fact that a comedian once said” rather than beg for money at event I would praise sing a guest by telling them we met in America months ago and I know what he will send to me today” will shock you more. According to him, this is a better manner of approach. However, like the popular saying “the Pot calling the Kettle black” the end result of these two approaches ends with both personalities involved being beggars and shameless ones too.

While this trend is not very popular in the music sect of the entertainment industry, one incident which readily comes to mind is the story of shame between Ruggedman and an Abuja-based promoter Ejiro Okhipwo who had invited the musician to his event in Abuja with the promise to pay him “One Hundred Thousand Naira”. So bad was the situation that the two dragged themselves to the social media with each sharing the negative story of their lives. While Ruggedman called the promoter a fraud, the man said he would sue him for libel. That is the experience that the once revered artiste went through because of a hundred thousand naira.

The movie industry too has been plagued by this epidemic, as it is now a norm to hear that someone is arranging actors and actresses to storm an event. The likes of Foluke Daramola, Bimbo Thomas etal are not new to this game, they visit Ekiti State almost once in two month either hoping to catch the attention of the Governor who more often than not would part with “some change” to be shared among the entourage of actresses and if unfortunately the first citizen of the state is not around they make do with whatever they can get from his commissioners and personal assistants, at they say, atleast they will refuel their cars back to Lagos.

It was one of these escapades that led Bisi Ibidapo-Obe into the unfortunate experience with Dino Melaye which landed into being a single parent. Other people in this game of petty begging include, but are not limited to Fathia Balogun, Segun Arinze, Capital Femi, Gbenga Adeyinka, Ike Ogbonna, Basorge Tariah Jnr, Iyabo Ojo and several others.

The afore mentioned names are part of a team that were recently disappointed by the Governor of Rivers State, Rotimi Amaechi, when he hosted a pre-Best Of Nollwood Award Dinner at the government house. The entertainers and the organizers of the award had stormed the event hoping to get some largess from the governor only to be disappointed at the end of the show. Like OBJ, and Donald Duke would say “consider yourself lucky to get a Presidential or Governor’s handshake.” That was all the team of actors and actresses got for their “celebrity appearance.”

Only recently Kate Henshaw and model Brian Okpara were also spotted at the Calabar Festival playing the same game that has pitched entertainers into the world of “alms begging”, leaving a lot of people wondering if this so called stars have totally lost their dignity or if it is a matter of survival at all cost.

Segun Arinze

Segun Arinze

-Kate Henshaw

-Kate Henshaw

Foluke Daramola

Foluke Daramola

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